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GPS IIF-1 Team Wins AF Chief of Staff Award

LOS ANGELES AIR FORCE BASE , Calif. -- A Total Force team comprised of members from the 19th and 2nd Space Operations squadrons, Space and Missile Systems Center's Global Positioning Systems Directorate and the Aerospace Corporation received the Air Force Chief of Staff Team Excellence Award. The team was recognized at the 2011 Air Force Association's Air and Space Conference for their work in executing the successful launch and on-orbit checkout of the first GPS IIF satellite launched on May 27, 2010.

The competition required the teams to prepare and present a 15-minute briefing and a 10-minute question-and-answer session on the manpower and process efficiencies gained, money saved and sustainment of savings before a panel of general officers. The GPS IIF team was one of five award winners selected from a field of 23 nominees across the Air Force. The team was recognized for efficiencies achieved during the GPS IIF launch and on-orbit activities to include a 50 percent reduction in the number of launch rehearsal events, a 22 percent reduction in launch and early orbit crew manning, a new Air Force Satellite Control Network resource-sharing process and an accelerated vehicle check-out process. GPS IIF provides improved accuracy through advanced atomic clocks, a longer design life, a new third civil signal (L5) that benefits commercial aviation and safety-of-life applications, and a more robust military signal.

"This is a tremendous achievement that demonstrates remarkable teamwork across acquisition and operations. It highlights the Air Force commitment to ensuring GPS remains the preeminent navigation system in the world," said Lt. Col. Dave Learned, GPS IIF program manager.

"This achievement epitomizes our Air Force Value -- excellence in all we do -- and this was made possible by the hard work and dedication of our GPS professionals," said Col. Bernie Gruber, director, GPS Directorate. "Thanks to our unwavering commitment to mission assurance, users around the globe will continue to benefit from improved GPS performance, while we continue acquiring, operating, and sustaining GPS as the 'Gold Standard' for positioning, navigation and timing."