Space force

Military satellites will now be operated by the Space Force

The Space Force was created less than three years ago and is now in charge of military satellite ground stations.

The Space Force was created less than three years ago and is now in charge of military satellite ground stations.
Photo: Staff Sgt. Kayla White (PA)

The U.S. military on Monday transferred its satellite ground stations to Space Force, the latest step in creating the sixth branch of the U.S. military dedicated to demonstrating national dominance in space.

The US Department of Defense announcement the transfer last year, which took effect on August 15. A total of 15 global units with 319 military and 259 army and navy civilians will transfer to Space Force’s Space Delta 8, the unit responsible for satellite communications, as noted in the announcement. Space Delta 8 is now in charge of the Wideband Global Satcom and Defense Satellite Communications System, a constellation of military communications satellites, as well as the Global Positioning System constellation for military and civilian users, among other communications satellites, according to Space News. These satellites were originally built by the US Air Force and then operated by the military for decades.

In addition to the satellites, the military also transferred $78 million from its budget to the Space Force to cover the cost of operating the satellite ground stations. “We need to create this unity of effort around our space missions, to make sure we’re up to the challenges that we face,” said Chance Saltzman, Space Force Deputy Chief of Space Operations for Operations, cyber and nuclear, in a press release. statement. “The space realm has quickly become much more crowded and much more contested than…when I was a lieutenant or captain operating space capabilities.”

But other branches of the military are not yet completely excluded from the satellite game. DARPA, part of the Department of Defense for Military Research, recently announced that it was working on a communication standardization plan between satellites in Earth orbit (including civilian, government and military satellites). The US military is also look for ways to use space technology for non-traditional warfare.

The space force was established in December 2019 as the military branch of the final frontier, defined as the “first articulation of space power as a separate and distinct form of military power”, in a statement. Although it hasn’t happened yet, this so-called “space powerhouse” appears to be preparing for a bleak future that involves the weaponization of space as more and more countries like China embark on space missions. the Moon and beyond. Unfortunately, resources in space are even rarer and more valuable than resources on Earth, and so far there are no clear laws on the distribution of these resources.

After: Two military satellites have just communicated with each other using space lasers