Air Force and industry officials have completed the critical design review of the Global Positioning System Block III satellite. That means that the next-generation satellite system is ready to enter the production phase, according to a release from prime contractor Lockheed Martin. Officials scrutinized the Block III design for four days at Lockheed’s new facility in Newtown, Pa., to see if the satellite would meet the warfighters’ needs. “Having completed the milestone ahead of schedule, with excellent results, the program is on firm footing, and I’m confident the team will successfully deliver this critical next-generation system,” said Col. Bernard Gruber, GPS Wing commander at Los Angeles AFB, Calif. Lockheed says Block IIIA satellites “guarantee signals three times more accurate than current GPS spacecraft and provide three times more power for military users.” More advanced Block IIIB and IIIC spacecraft will follow.
The Pentagon awarded a contract worth over $2 billion for the next batch of F-35 engines to Pratt & Whitney on June 5. The deal for Lot 17 F135 engines, totaling $2.02 billion, is expected to be completed by December 2025.