Space force

How the US Space Force plans to monitor outer space

Outer space is increasingly crowded, with both commercial endeavors and secret military projects. And it will be up to the new military branch of the United States, the Space Force, to protect American interests there.

Space launches in the United States have increased and the participation of private companies has increased over the past decade. Additionally, satellite imagery in the ongoing war between Ukraine and Russia has highlighted the importance of space assets, both commercial and military.

“We’ve been working with private industry for years now,” said Maj. Gen. Shawn N. Bratton, commander of the US Space Force Space Training and Readiness Command. “And we are certainly increasing that activity as the presence of commercial industry increases in space.”

SpaceX, Virgin Orbit and United Launch Alliance, which is a joint venture of Lockheed Martin and Boeing, are launching more and more satellites into space. And in the case of SpaceX, some have increasingly ambitious plans involving reusable rockets, crewed flights and potential colonization.

“That’s what really gives us the edge over any other country in the world,” said U.S. Representative Salud Carbajal, D-California, a member of the Space Force Caucus in Congress. “We really have a great partnership between our Department of Defense and companies that are making their own personal investments in technology for their own economic interests, of course, and we’re able to drive that innovation.”

Watch the video to learn more about the future of the US Space Force