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The GPS — a space-based satellite system that provides positioning, navigation, and timing data to users worldwide — has become an essential U.S. national security asset and component in daily life. The GPS program is being modernized to enhance its performance, accuracy and integrity. In 2013, the House Armed Services Committee directed the Air Force to report on lower-cost GPS solutions. The committee also mandated that the GAO review the Air Force report. The GAO (1) assessed the extent to which the Air Force GPS report met Committee requirements; and, (2) identified additional information that is important in guiding future GPS investments.
The GAO recommends the Air Force: (1) affirm the future size of the GPS constellation it plans to support; (2) ensure future assessments are comprehensive and include cost risk and the impact of options on all three GPS segments; and (3) engage the broader stakeholder community in future assessments of options.