by Maj. Cody Chiles Combined Force Space Component Command
VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif., Sept. 24, 2020 — For the first time, the Combined Force Space Component Command’s 18th Space Control Squadron began publicly sharing data for debris-on-debris conjunction predictions via www.Space-Track.org, Sept. 24.
Previously, the 18 SPCS only released debris-on-active satellite conjunction prediction data publically due to limited conjunction screening and reporting capacity.
PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo., Aug. 27, 2020 (US Space Command PR) — U.S. Marine Corps Master Gunnery Sgt. Scott H. Stalker is set to assume responsibility of U.S. Space Command from U.S. Space Force Chief Master Sgt. Roger A. Towberman during an Aug. 28 ceremony.
The Department of Defense’s 11th combatant command is getting a new command senior enlisted leader eight days after U.S. Army Gen. James H. Dickinson assumed command from USSF Gen. John W. Raymond.
Stalker, a native of Lebanon, New Hampshire, previously served as the CSEL for U.S. Cyber Command and National Security Agency.
PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. (AFNS) — In a ceremony that was both crisp and solemn, Army Gen. James H. Dickinson took the reins Aug. 20 of U.S. Space Command, and in the process further cemented space’s ever-enlarging importance in national defense and in countless familiar acts of everyday life.
WASHINGTON, (AFNS) — The U.S. Space Force reached an important milestone by recently signing an agreement to allow sharing of the Standardized Astrodynamics Algorithm Library with the Ministry of Defence of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
The U.K. was the first international partner to join U.S. Space Command’s Operation OLYMPIC DEFENDER and is the first to receive access to the SAAL, though USSF is currently working with other partner nations to expand that list.
EL SEGUNDO, Calif. (Aerospace Corporation PR) — The Aerospace Corporation (Aerospace) announced today it is investing nearly $100 million in a second state-of-the-art research and development facility in Colorado Springs, Colo.
This facility, recently approved by the Aerospace Board of Trustees, is planned to be 70 percent classified space and includes a multi-purpose high-technology center to meet the growing requirements of the U.S. Space Command, the U.S. Space Force, and a variety of other customers.
PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo., July 23, 2020 (U.S. Space Command PR) — U.S. Space Command has evidence that Russia conducted a non-destructive test of a space-based anti-satellite weapon. On July 15, Russia injected a new object into orbit from Cosmos 2543, currently Satellite Catalog Number 45915 in Space-Track.org.
Russia released this object in proximity to another Russian satellite, which is similar to on-orbit activity conducted by Russia in 2017, and inconsistent with the system’s stated mission as an inspector satellite. Tracking information can be found on Space-Track.org.
PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. (U.S. Space Command PR) — Gen. John W. “Jay” Raymond, U.S. Space Command commander and U.S. Space Force Chief of Space Operations, signed the first USSPACECOM operations order under Operation OLYMPIC DEFENDER.
OOD is a key multinational effort intended to optimize space operations, improve mission assurance, enhance resilience and synchronize U.S. efforts with some of its closest allies.
PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo (U.S. Space Command PR) — U.S. Space Command reached a critical milestone as the Department of Defense’s 11th Combatant Command by finalizing the command’s campaign plan, which incorporates a new mission statement placing greater emphasis on preparing for, defending against and deterring threats.
The campaign plan provides guidance to USSPACECOM’s staff and components on day-to-day operations, activities and investments to achieve the command’s mission in support of DoD and national security objectives.
Washington, D.C. (AFNS) — With the establishment of the United States Space Force, the Department of the Air Force, in coordination with the Office of Secretary of Defense, is announcing its revised approach for determining the permanent location of U.S. Space Command headquarters.
The revised approach considers the newly established U.S. Space Force emerging organizational structure and analyzes its effects on the limited number of highly specialized personnel and infrastructure required to support both the Space Force and Space Command. Additionally, the approach expands the number of locations eligible for consideration to host the permanent U.S. Space Command headquarters, and provides a comprehensive and transparent analysis before selecting a final location.
The following excerpt from the report summarizes U.S. counterspace capabilities.
The United States has conducted multiple tests of technologies for rendezvous and proximity operations (RPO) in both low Earth orbit (LEO) and geosynchronous Earth orbit (GEO), along with tracking, targeting, and intercept technologies that could lead to a co-orbital anti-satellite (ASAT) capability.
These tests and demonstrations were conducted for other non-offensive missions, such as missile defense, on-orbit inspections, and satellite servicing, and the United States does not have an acknowledged program to develop co-orbital capabilities. However, the United States possesses the technological capability to develop a co-orbital capability in a short period of time if it chooses to.
PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo., April 15, 2020 (U.S. Space Command PR) — U.S. Space Command is aware and tracking Russia’s direct-ascent anti-satellite (DA-ASAT) missile test April 15.
“Russia’s DA-ASAT test provides yet another example that the threats to U.S. and allied space systems are real, serious and growing,” said Gen. John W. “Jay” Raymond, USSPACECOM commander and U.S. Space Force Chief of Space Operations. “The United States is ready and committed to deterring aggression and defending the Nation, our allies and U.S. interests from hostile acts in space.”
Russia’s missile system is capable of destroying satellites in low Earth orbit (LEO) and comes on the heels of Russia’s on-orbit testing the U.S. highlighted in February, namely COSMOS 2542 and COSMOS 2543. These satellites, which behaved similar to previous Russian satellites that exhibited characteristics of a space weapon, conducted maneuvers near a U.S. Government satellite that would be interpreted as irresponsible and potentially threatening in any other domain.
“This test is further proof of Russia’s hypocritical advocacy of outer space arms control proposals designed to restrict the capabilities of the United States while clearly having no intention of halting their counterspace weapons programs,” Raymond said. “Space is critical to all nations and our way of life. The demands on space systems continue in this time of crisis where global logistics, transportation and communication are key to defeating the COVID-19 pandemic.
“It is a shared interest and responsibility of all spacefaring nations to create safe, stable and operationally sustainable conditions for space activities, including commercial, civil and national security activities,” Raymond concluded.
By 2nd Lt. Kristen Shimkus U.S. Space Force Public Affairs
PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. — United States Space Force officials formally declared initial operational capability and operational acceptance of the Space Fence radar system, located on Kwajalein Island in the Republic of the Marshall Islands, March 27, 2020.
Space Fence provides significantly improved space surveillance capabilities to detect and track orbiting objects such as commercial and military satellites, depleted rocket boosters and space debris in low, medium, and geosynchronous Earth orbit regimes.
CNN is reporting that Russian “inspector” satellites are maneuvering near a U.S. government reconnaissance satellite.
“Last November the Russian government launched a satellite that subsequently released a second satellite,” US Space Command Commander and the Space Force’s Chief of Space Operations Gen. John Raymond said in a statement Monday.
“These satellites have been actively maneuvering near a U.S. government satellite and behaving similar to another set of satellites that Russia deployed in 2017, and which the Russian government characterized as ‘inspector satellites.’ “
“The purpose of the experiment is to continue work on assessing the technical condition of domestic satellites,” the Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement at the time.
Raymond said Monday that Russia’s recent actions place the county among nations that “have turned space into a warfighting domain.”
ARLINGTON, Va., December 20, 2019 (AFNS) — Today the President signed the 2020 National Defense Authorization Act and with it, directed the establishment of the U.S. Space Force as the sixth branch of the armed forces.
“We are at the dawn of a new era for our Nation’s Armed Forces. The establishment of the U.S. Space Force is an historic event and a strategic imperative for our Nation. Space has become so important to our way of life, our economy, and our national security that we must be prepared as a Nation to protect it from hostile actions,” said Secretary of Defense, Mark T. Esper. “Our Military Services have created the world’s best space capabilities. Now is the time for the U.S. Space Force to lead our Nation in preparing for emerging threats in an evolving space environment. This new service will help ensure we are postured to deter aggression, defend our national interests and outpace potential adversaries.”