The US Space Force plans to launch a live orbital range to test new kits and train its troops to operate space systems, but finding a place among the stars has been difficult.
A branch of the US military that was launched under former President Donald Trump, Space Force is currently unable to find an area of outer space for the National Space Test and Training Complex (NSTTC), a range of tests live, especially due to the 1967 Outer Space Treaty.
International law prohibits any country from claiming national sovereignty in space or over a celestial body like the moon, making it difficult for the Space Force to set up a test and training site, Breaking reported Thursday. Defense.
According to the USSF website, the Services Branch is responsible for organizing, training, and equipping USSF personnel, also known as Custodians, to conduct global space operations that improve the way joint and coalition forces fight, while providing decision-makers with military options to achieve national goals. Space Force was created in December 2019 and became the first new branch of the armed forces in 73 years.
“This is perhaps one of the biggest technical challenges we’re working on right now,” Maj. Gen. Shawn Bratton, first commander of Space Training and Readiness Command (STARCOM), said April 6 at the symposium. annual meeting of the Space Foundation.
Bratton added that it is already possible to launch training and test sites “in other areas” such as land, sea and air, according to the outlet.
He pointed out that the Air Force has established sites in different parts of the country, including Edwards AFB in California and Nellis AFB in Nevada “where we can fly new systems, test them and understand the capabilities.”
“There is no sovereignty or space and we are not at all seeking to impose this type of model in the space domain”, he added.
However, Bratton noted that the digital space could be used for training and testing. He said National Space Test and Training will rely heavily on the use of digital models and ground simulations.
STARCOM reportedly intends to work with the Space Warfighting and Analysis Center (SWAC) to create digital models to guide future force design in Space Force.
“We will be able to perform testing in the digital space for new systems, as well as training activities,” Bratton said, according to Breaking Defense. “And we’ll be using these same models that start with SWAC and kind of went through Space Systems Command and eventually STARCOM will start using those as well. It requires a shared infrastructure that allows us to pass models, and there’s a technical challenge the.”
He said the Guardians’ training takes place in a digital form. For example, the Space Flag series of exercises and the now defunct Air Force Space Command are entirely virtual.
However, STARCOM still conducted live electronic warfare training, according to Bratton.
“I think there are certain activities that we would benefit from live training for. And we are thinking about how to do that,” he said. “There’s a great pattern happening today at the Air Force Academy and the FalconSAT program.”
He continued, “We’re trying to assess whether it’s a good model for us to expand Space Force where operators, whether it’s cyberspace or intelligence, can get hands-on experience before showing up. to their first unit of operations.”
Newsweek has contacted Space Force for comment.