Lockheed, Air Force launch infrared sensing satellite

A newly produced space satellite was launched this month at Canaveral in hopes of offering more intel on battle space and missile operations.

The Space Based Infrared System (SBIRS) Geo Light 3 was launched Jan. 19 using a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket by the United States Air Force in connection with Lockheed Martin, Lockheed Martin said in a news release.

Lockheed Martin said the newly developed satellite was built at its facilities in Sunnyvale, California, as the next in a series of Air Force satellites aimed at providing multimission surveillance in the areas of missile warning, missile defense, technical intelligence and battle space awareness, the release said.

The satellite is expected to orbit 22,000 miles above the Earth and use powerful sensors and cameras to detect and track infrared events, such as missile launches or other heat-causing events, Lockheed said in the release.

“The data provided by SBIRS can also be applied to a number of qualified government and civilian applications, including first response for natural disasters and firefighting,” Lockheed said in the release.

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