Subscribe free to our newsletters via your
. 24/7 Space News .

Two SOPS calls on reliable spare for active service
by Scott Prate for Schriever Sentinel
Schreiver AFB CO (SPX) Aug 18, 2011

File image.

Demonstrating the strength of the Global Positioning System constellation of satellites, the 2nd Space Operations Squadron is set to swap out an underperforming satellite with a handy spare this week.

During late May, 2 SOPS analysts began noticing signs that SVN-30, a GPS IIA vehicle, was no longer maintaining the gold standard of performance. Engineers in 2 SOPS, along with their civilian partners from Boeing and the Aerospace Corporation began developing a plan to recall SVN-35 back into service to replace the ailing SVN-30.

"The vehicle we're replacing has a clock that's malfunctioning," said Capt. Frankie Reddick, 2 SOPS assistant director of operations and previously an analysis flight commander within the squadron. "When its clock started to show signs of going out, our engineers knew we needed to do something because it wasn't suitable for our global users."

SVN-35, also a Block IIA satellite, was decommissioned from active service back in 2009 to make room in the constellation for the launch and eventual deployment of the latest new GPS Block IIR vehicle.

Meanwhile, SVN-35's timing and navigation signal kept ringing true, so when the need arose for a spare, 2 SOPS analysts knew just where to go.

"We keep on-orbit spares for exactly this purpose," said Lt. Col. Jennifer Grant, 2 SOPS commander. "The robustness of our current constellation and the recent completion of the Expandable 24 architecture provide us with the flexibility to perform replacements like this with minimal impact to global users. Expandable 24 increases global GPS coverage by optimizing the location of GPS satellites in space. SVN-35 will replace a satellite residing in an expanded slot of the constellation."

This event marks the second time in the more than 25-year history of the GPS program that operators will transition a decommissioned vehicle back to active status.

"We've started moving SVN-35 from its decommissioned location to an active slot," Reddick said. "During the next week, we'll test the vehicle and if it's still performing like it was when we turned it on back during June, we'll set it healthy to users as it is moving."

Reddick noted that all of the extra work is being performed by engineers, analysts and operators here, who have really put some elbow grease into making the transition seamless for worldwide military and commercial application users.

Lt. Col. Dean Holthaus, 2 SOPS director of operations, said that SVN-35 has surpassed its designed lifespan by 11 years. Not bad for a spacecraft that was constructed during an era when people were still using typewriters and analog telephones.

"SVN-35 was launched in 1993, with a design life of 7.5 years," Holthaus said. "My hat goes off to our operators, analysts, and contractor support personnel - their superior care and feeding of our constellation is the reason SVN-35 is still viable for operations 18 years after launch."


Related Links
GPS Applications, Technology and Suppliers

Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News

S. Koreans file class action suit against Apple
Seoul (AFP) Aug 17, 2011
More than 20,000 South Korean iPhone users filed a class action lawsuit Wednesday against US technology giant Apple for alleged privacy violations over the collection of location data, a law firm said. The suit came after lawyer Kim Hyung-Suk was awarded one million won ($933) in compensation in June, the first such payout by Apple's Korean unit, following an interim order by a court in the ... read more

Moon younger than previously thought

GRAIL Launch Less Than One Month Away

The Lunar Farside And The Ancient Big Splat

"Big Splat" May Explain The Moon's Mountainous Far Side

Arrival in the Arctic

Opportunity Reaches Endeavour Crater

Lava, not water, said cause of Mars beds

No Convenience Stores Between Earth and Mars... Yet

NASA Selects XCOR to Participate in Suborbital Flight Contract

NASA Selects Seven Firms To Provide Near-Space Flight Services

NASA moves forward in manned spaceflight

Russia space chief regrets focus on manned missions

No Toilet for Tiangong

Toys for Tiangong

Why Tiangong is not a Station Hub

China to launch experimental satellite in coming days

Robotic Refueling Module, Soon To Be Relocated to Permanent Space Station Position

SpaceX plans November test flight to space station

Crew Stows Spacesuits, Completes Robotics Checkout

The Orbital Perspective of Astronaut Ron Garan

Russia loses contact with new satellite

China successfully launches maritime satellite

NASA selects Virgin Galactic for Suborbital Flights

Arabsat-5C is welcomed in French Guiana for Arianespace's next Ariane 5 launch

Stellar eclipse gives glimpse of exoplanet

Alien World is Blacker than Coal

Strange planet is blacker than coal

Exoplanet Aurora Makes For An Out-of-this-World Sight

Tests find thyroid radiation in Japanese children

First quantitative measure of radiation leaked from Fukushima reactor

India's Bharti unveils $220 tablet challenger to iPad

Space first: Live 3-D images from orbit

The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement