Fall is the time to launch satellites, it would seem. The Air Force and United Launch Alliance have scheduled a launch of their eighth GPS IIF satellite from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station this Wednesday. The launch window is around 18 minutes and will begin at just after 1 p.m. EDT. You can view the live webcast here on Wednesday starting at 1:01 p.m..
The GPS IIF satellite is one of the newer next-generation GPS satellites intended to improve accuracy and enhance performance of the U.S. GPS satellite constellation. The satellite that will be replaced with the next-generation GPS IIF was launched in 1997 and has been operating for 17 years—more than 9 years past it’s expected functional service life.
GPS World states that this will be the 89th mission for the ULA since they were founded in 2006. Updates for the launch can be viewed on the ULA facebook page, on Twitter with the #GPSIIF8 hashtag or by calling the ULA launch hotline at 1-877-852-4321.
For more technical information about the satellite and launch, click here.