CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (CBS4) – A GPS satellite built at Lockheed Martin in Jefferson County successfully launched into space Sunday morning from Cape Canaveral. The next generation GPS III satellite was the first of its kind to be built at the aerospace company’s lab in Colorado.

(credit: Lockheed Martin)

The launch on Sunday came after a string of delays starting on Tuesday. Lockheed Martin officials say the satellite successfully separated from the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, and it is now responding to commands from the facility southwest of Denver.

Artist’s rendering of a new GPS III satellite. (credit – Lockheed Martin)

The GPS system was built for the U.S. Air Force and will bring new technology to the GPS constellation.

“GPS III’s new L1C civil signal will also make it the first GPS satellite broadcasting a compatible signal with other international global navigation satellite systems, like Europe’s Galileo, improving connectivity for civilian users,” officials said in a news release Sunday.

Civilian use is expected to take a few years.

More than 200 subcontractors helped with the mission including Coloradans.

For more information on GPS III visit: www.lockheedmartin.com/gps.

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