Cape Canaveral Air Force Station FL - Nov. 6, 2004 - A Delta II launch vehicle carried a Global Positioning System satellite nearly 11,000 miles above Earth from here today.

The satellite replaces one of 24 in the constellation that experts call the most accurate navigation aid ever for U.S. war fighters.

The constellation provides continuous, precise three-dimensional location information (latitude, longitude and altitude), velocity and exact time to worldwide users. The satellite is expected to be fully operational in December.

“America’s defense relies heavily on space and missile forces,” said Col. Mark Owen, 45th Space Wing commander here. “With one GPS-guided bomb Military leaders can destroy a target that in World War II would have required an average of 648 bombs to destroy.”

“This satellite joins a constellation that is playing a stellar role in ensuring U.S. war fighters have the tools needed to continue to fight and win today and in the years ahead,” he said.