GPS IIR-19M Launched Successfully
Date: Monday, March 17 @ 18:12:32 UTC
Saturday saw the successful launch from Cape Canaveral of GPS IIR-19M. This satellite is the sixth of the modernised Block II R-M vehicles and the third successful launch in 5 months of a Block IIR-M. It is currently in the test and evaluation phases before being committed to operational duties.
Block IIR-M's are modifications of existing Block IIR satellites built by Lockheed Martin. Of the 21 Block-IIR satellites, 8 have been upgraded to IIR-M specification with the last of these scheduled for launch in June containing a payload that will provide a temporary demonstration of a the new L5 civilian signal.
Block IIR-M upgrades and technology improvements include:
Improved antenna panels which have improved gain, a second L2 civilian signal which will improve interference handling and reduce errors caused by atmospheric conditions and 2 new signals for military usage with improvements to accuracy, enhanced encryption and anti-jamming capability.