United Launch Alliance launched a Delta IV rocket to send a GPS satellite into space from Cape Canaveral Thursday morning.
The last launch for this particular Delta IV rocket took off at 9:06 a.m.
ULA space captain integrator Glenn Davis said the satellite aboard the rocket is three times more accurate than others.
"It has enhanced capabilities compared to past GPS satellites,” Davis said.
Nicknamed Magellan, Davis said its primary use will be for the U.S. Air Force’s space and missile system. He said the satellite will have an anti-jam feature to make sure there will never be a breakdown in communications.
"It will be providing critical positioning data for our war fighters on the ground," Davis said.
He said Magellan is the next step in modernizing the worldwide navigation network.
“It provides critical and accurate data for aviation, maritime and railroad. It is key to our global economy,” he said.
But he said the GPS satellite will also improve some very practical uses most people use daily. The next time you ask your smartphone for directions, he said, they'll be more accurate, because the signal will be stronger.
Cox Media Group