The second Mobile User Objective System satellite is shown in its payload fairing before it was launched in July. (Lockheed Martin)
The Navy has taken over operations of the second Mobile User Objective System (MUOS) communications satellite, after manufacturer Lockheed Martin completed four months of on-orbit testing. The handover also includes three MUOS ground stations.
The MUOS-2 satellite will be relocated to its operational slot by the Naval Satellite Operations Center and will undergo further testing before being commissioned in 2014. The satellite was launched July 19 by a United Launch Alliance Atlas V. MUOS satellites offer a 10-fold increase in transmission throughput over the current ultra-high frequency satellites.
“We completed our baseline on-orbit testing in half the time compared to MUOS-1,” said Iris Bombelyn, vice president of narrowband communications at Lockheed Martin, in a company news release. “We look forward to supporting the Navy’s test and evaluation phase to demonstrate the total capability of the Mobile User Objective System. When commissioned, the full digital data and flexible network management capabilities will be available to users for both MUOS-1 and MUOS-2.”