Template:Infobox spaceflight USA-242, also known as GPS IIF-4, GPS IIF SV-5 and Vega,[1] is an American navigation satellite which was launched on 15 May 2013 and became operational on 21 June 2013.[2] The fourth Block IIF GPS satellite, it forms part of the Global Positioning System.

USA-242 is a 1,630-kilogram (Template:Convert/LoffAonSon) spacecraft, built by Boeing with a design life of 15 years.[3] It operates from a semi-synchronous medium Earth orbit, at an altitude of 20,459 kilometers (Template:Convert/round mi) an inclination of 55 degrees,[4] in slot 5 of plane C of the GPS constellation.[5] The new satellite was originally intended to replace the seventeen-year-old USA-117 satellite,[6] but currently both USA-117 (SVN-33) and USA-242 (SVN-66) are in active use.[7] USA-242 broadcasts its navigation signals using the PRN-27 signal modulation.

United Launch Alliance conducted the launch of GPS IIF-4, using an Atlas V 401 carrier rocket. Launch took place from Space Launch Complex 41 at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, with liftoff occurring at 21:38 UTC on 15 May 2013, the beginning of an 18-minute launch window. The launch marked the first time since 1985 that a GPS satellite had launched on an Atlas rocket, or indeed any rocket other than a Delta.[6]


  1. McDowell, Jonathan. "Issue 679 (draft)". Jonathan's Space Report. Retrieved 16 May 2013. 
  2. "NANU 2013035". United States Coast Guard. Retrieved 25 June 2013. 
  3. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named GSP
  4. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named MOB
  5. Ray, Justin. "Mission Status Center". Spaceflight Now. Retrieved 15 May 2013. 
  6. 6.0 6.1 Graham, William (15 May 2013). "ULA Atlas V successfully Template:Sic deploys new GPS satellite". Retrieved 16 May 2013. 
  7. "GPS Constellation Status". United States Coast Guard. Retrieved 25 June 2013. 
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