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GPS Wing At LA Air Force Base Changes Command

by LaTonya Lofton-Collins
for Global Positioning Systems Wing
Los Angeles AFB (AFNS) Jun 22, 2007
Lt. Gen. Michael Hamel, commander, Space and Missile Systems Center, officiated the Global Positioning Systems Wing Change of Command ceremony here June 18. Col. David Madden, who served as vice commander of the GPS Wing since July 2006, assumed command of the wing from Col. Wesley Ballenger Jr.

Colonel Madden has more than 26 years of experience in the acquisition, engineering and operations arena. He has evaluated foreign aerospace technology capabilities, chaired a National Level Intelligence Community committee, developed space-related advanced C3I systems, was a director of engineering, defined and documented operational requirements for the future transformational space systems, and commanded both a space operations squadron and a material acquisition group.

Some of his major awards and decorations include: the Defense Meritorious Service Medal with two oak leaf clusters, Meritorious Service Medal with three oak leaf clusters, Air Force Commendation Medal with one oak leaf cluster, Joint Service Achievement Medal, and the National Intelligence Medal of Achievement.

Colonel Madden is poised for change and emphasized teamwork with the GPS Wing. "I look forward to the challenges ahead; we will celebrate achievements, work through issues, and face new challenges, and we will do it as a team," said the colonel.

"I plan to develop new processes and procedures to effectively and efficiently manage GPS. I am committed to GPS, and together we will continue to provide the world's premier position, navigation and timing standard to our military and civil users around the globe."

Colonel Ballenger served as the GPS system program director and commander for the GPS Wing for more than four years. He was responsible for the multiservice, multinational systems wing which conducts development, acquisition, fielding and sustainment of all GPS space segment, satellite command and control (ground) segment, and GPS military user equipment.

Under his command, the GPS Wing fielded the first, next-generation military handheld GPS receiver with now more than 100,000 Defense Advanced GPS Receivers in the hands of the warfighter. He fielded over 3,000 Combat Survivor Evader Locator radios, a handheld survival radio with an embedded GPS receiver to support rescue missions and special operations, and launched nine successful GPS Block IIR/IIR-M missions, to include the first modernized satellite providing improved capabilities to military and civilian users around the globe.

Also, under his leadership, the GPS Wing attained the first satellite navigation agreement; completed the development of the Legacy Accuracy Improvement Initiative with National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, providing warfighting forces and civilian users worldwide with increased accuracy; retired the Transportable Ground Antenna, which marked a major milestone in GPS history; and planned and developed acquisition strategies for space, ground and user equipment.

Colonel Ballenger thanked the men and women of the GPS Wing for their continued support and expressed his gratitude for the achievements the GPS Wing accomplished under his leadership.

"It has been an honor and a privilege to serve as the commander of the GPS Wing," he said. We've led the charge to improve our military and civil navigation capabilities to ensure GPS remains the gold standard for precision navigation and timing."

"GPS has achieved new heights of success, and the achievements we've accomplished are due to the hard work by this team of dedicated professionals," Colonel Ballenger said." Your tireless efforts and dedication have ensured GPS remains the world's premier space-based navigation system well into the 21st Century."

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Northrop Grumman Delivers First Production Stellar Navigation System To US Air Force
Woodland Hills CA (SPX) Jun 20, 2007
Northrop Grumman has delivered to the U.S. Air Force the first of 31 production LN-120G stellar-inertial navigation systems for the RC-135 aircraft. Aided by the LN-120G, the Air Force can accurately pinpoint hostile targets detected by the RC-135 and transmit the information to the Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System (Joint STARS) aircraft and, ultimately, to fighter aircraft.

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