WASHINGTON — The Biden administration on March 9 unveiled its proposed spending plan for fiscal year 2024 that includes $842 billion for the Defense Department — an increase of $26 billion or 3.2 percent above what Congress enacted in 2023. 

The White House released only a summary of the budget proposal, with no details on what funding is being allocated to military space programs. More specifics will be released March 13. 

A running theme in the summary document is that increased defense spending is needed to compete with China. 

The White House said the 2024 budget “increases space resilience,” a top priority of Secretary of the Air Force Frank Kendall. 

In a speech March 7 at the Air Warfare Symposium in Colorado, Kendall said the Air Force and Space Force in the 2024 budget continue to make investments in next-generation systems to counter China. 

The White House in the budget summary said space is “vital to U.S. national security and integral to modern warfare.”

The 2024 budget “maintains America’s advantage by improving the resilience of U.S. space architectures, such as in space sensing and communications, to bolster deterrence and increase survivability during hostilities,” said the document. 

“The budget prioritizes China as America’s pacing challenge in line with the 2022 National Defense Strategy,” the White House said.

The proposal “supports investments to accelerate critical weapons and munitions production lines; develop capabilities like long-range strike, undersea, hypersonic, and autonomous systems; and increase resiliency of our space architectures.”

Analysts predict military space funding in 2024 will continue an upward trend seen in recent years.

Sandra Erwin writes about military space programs, policy, technology and the industry that supports this sector. She has covered the military, the Pentagon, Congress and the defense industry for nearly two decades as editor of NDIA’s National Defense...