A Block IIF GPS satellite
|Operator||US Air Force|
|Mission duration||12 years (planned)|
|Spacecraft||GPS SVN-68 (IIF-7)|
|Spacecraft type||GPS Block IIF|
|Launch mass||1,630 kilograms (3,590 lb)|
|Start of mission|
|Launch date||2 August 2014, 03:23UTC|
|Rocket||Atlas V 401, AV-048|
|Launch site||Cape Canaveral SLC-41|
|Perigee||20,341 km (12,639 mi)|
|Apogee||20,469 km (12,719 mi)|
|Epoch||2 August 2014|
USA-256, also known as GPS IIF-7, GPS SVN-68 and NAVSTAR 71, is an American navigation satellite which forms part of the Global Positioning System. It was the seventh of twelve Block IIF satellites to be launched.
Built by Boeing and launched by United Launch Alliance, USA-256 was launched at 03:23 UTC on 2 August 2014, atop a Atlas V 401 carrier rocket, vehicle number AV-048. The launch took place from Space Launch Complex 41 at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, and placed USA-256 directly into medium Earth orbit.
As of 3 August 2014, USA-256 was in an orbit with a perigee of 20,341 kilometers (12,639 mi), an apogee of 20,469 kilometers (12,719 mi), a period of 727.05 minutes, and 55.02 degrees of inclination to the equator. It is used to broadcast the PRN 09 signal, and operates in slot 6 of plane F of the GPS constellation. The satellite has a design life of 12 years and a mass of 1,630 kilograms (3,590 lb).  It is currently in service following commissioning on September 17, 2014.
- "Navstar 71". US National Space Science Data Center. Retrieved 3 August 2014.
- Krebs, Gunter. "GPS-2F (Navstar-2F)". Gunter's Space Page. Retrieved 3 August 2014.
- McDowell, Jonathan. "Launch Log". Jonathan's Space Page. Retrieved 3 August 2014.
- McDowell, Jonathan. "Satellite Catalog". Jonathan's Space Page. Retrieved 3 August 2014.
- McDowell, Jonathan. "Launch List". Launch Vehicle Database. Jonathan's Space Page. Retrieved 3 August 2014.
- "NOTICE ADVISORY TO NAVSTAR USERS (NANU) 2014071". United States Coast Guard. Retrieved 18 September 2014.
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