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Successful Annual GPS Enterprise Review

LOS ANGELES AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- The Global Positioning Systems Directorate achieved major milestones in developing and deploying modernized GPS capabilities, Dec. 17. Col. Bernard Gruber, GPS program director at the Space and Missile Systems Center in Los Angeles, led his team through the second Annual GPS Enterprise Review, a Defense Acquisition Board review chaired by deputy Undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics, and attended by other senior Department of Defense officials.

The purpose of the AGER is to eliminate individual DAB reviews for the various GPS satellite, ground station and user equipment programs, thus streamlining the acquisition decision process. This year, the AGER focused on major acquisition milestones for each of the GPS Enterprise's three segments - Milestone C for the GPS Block IIIA space vehicle program, Milestone B for the Next-Generation Operational Control Segment program and Milestone A for the Modernized GPS User Equipment program.

Thanks to the hard work and dedication of the GPS Directorate team and staff agencies, GPS IIIA received Milestone C approval, as well as authorization to initiate long-lead parts procurement for the first two production satellites. A total of eight GPS IIIA satellites will be built, with first delivery scheduled for mid-2014. The GPS III program is built on a "back-to-basics" foundation which emphasizes stable requirements, stable funding and rigorous systems engineering. The Department of Defense and Department of Transportation play key roles in advancing GPS capabilities and their steady leadership has contributed immensely to the success of GPS III in terms of requirements and funding.

OCX is on target for a successful Milestone B following the program's Preliminary Design Review scheduled for late spring 2011. Additionally, the program received approval for a plan to develop and build and deliver a Launch & Checkout System to launch and fly the first GPS IIIA satellite before the full OCX capability is fielded.

MGUE is primed for a Milestone A decision following a detailed OSD review of the Technology Development Strategy in the next 45 days. The TDS and wide resurgence to support warfighter needs and requirements was applauded by offices throughout the coordination cycle.

"We have made great progress while keeping the right focus on mission success," said Colonel Gruber. "I am extremely pleased with the outcome of the AGER, the support of the senior decision makers and most of all my team of dedicated professionals. The modernized capabilities coming on board will support the warfighter and the world for years to come."

GPS has never been stronger than it is today, with 31 operational satellites on-orbit broadcasting positioning, navigation and timing signals to users worldwide.