by 2nd Lt. Darren Domingo
50th Space Wing Public Affairs
7/27/2015 - SCHRIEVER AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- The
50th Space Wing's 2nd and 19th Space Operations Squadrons accepted
command and control of the tenth Global Positioning System Block IIF
satellite here July 24.
The Space and Missile Systems Center's GPS Directorate, located at Los
Angeles Air Force Base, California, remained in control of the satellite
during an on-orbit checkout period before the hand-off to 2 and 19
"We're extremely honored to accept command and control of the tenth GPS
IIF satellite," said Lt. Col. Todd Benson, 2 SOPS commander. "The
phenomenal team from the Space and Missiles Systems Center, 45th Space
Wing and 19 SOPS were pivotal to this successful launch."
Lt. Col. Sam Baxter, 19 SOPS commander, explained the importance of his team's role in transfer operations.
"Satellite Control Authority transfers are proud moments for Team Black
Jack," said Baxter. "Nineteen SOPS has lead responsibilities for launch
and checkout operations of new satellites. Our civilians and Airmen
leverage their years of experience and expertise to configure the
satellite for its final operating configuration."
Upon completion of the transfer, the majority of 19 SOPS' operations are concluded, while 2 SOPS continues satellite operations.
Beyond its essential capabilities for the military, GPS is a worldwide
utility that provides highly accurate positioning, navigation and timing
services for people all around the world.
Additionally, the U.S. and global economy rely on space and cyberspace
to enable such vital activities as banking, weather forecasting,
transportation, global commerce and farming/agriculture.
"Today's GPS constellation is the largest and most robust it has ever
been," said Capt. Aaron Blain, GPS analyst flight commander. "With a
constellation composed of 40 satellites and four different models, it is
both a challenge and a privilege to operate and maintain."
The members of 2 and 19 SOPS operate the largest Department of Defense
satellite constellation via the Master Control Station and a worldwide
network of monitoring stations and ground antennas.
"2 SOPS' continuing objective is to ensure GPS remains the gold standard
for global space-based navigation and timing by providing highly
reliable and accurate GPS signals to users around the world," said
Benson. "We look forward to continuing to provide our mission partners
and global users with the most accurate position, navigation and timing
signal available in the history of GPS."