U.S. Space Command: What we know so far


This article was first published in the SN Military.Space newsletter. If you would like to get our news and insights for national security space professionals every Tuesday, sign up here for your free subscription.

SN Military.Space Sandra Erwin

Since President Trump signed the order on Dec. 18 to stand up U.S. Space Command, questions have swirled about who will run it, where it will be located and how many people will be assigned to it.

A four-star nominee has been selected but his or her identity remains a mystery. With regard to the location, base studies will have to be completed and that could take a while. One of the proposed locations is Shriever Air Force Base, Colorado. The Joint Force Space Component Command, which today reports to U.S. Strategic Command, is the organization that will serve as the foundation of U.S. Space Command. Air Force Space Command and JFSCC Commander Gen. John “Jay” Raymond last year recommended moving 140 military and civilian space operators from Vandenberg Air Force Base, California, to Schriever, to be closer to the JFSCC and collocated with the National Space Defense Center.

U.S. Space Command

At its inception, U.S. Space Command is expected to have a lean force of about 600 people, spread across four locations: Shriever, Vandenberg, Peterson Air Force, Colorado (home of Air Force Space Command) and Offutt Air Force Base, Nebraska (home of U.S. Strategic Command).

“The expectation is that U.S. Space Command will be full operational capability on day one,” Air Force Space Command Vice Commander Lt. Gen. David “DT” Thompson told reporters last month. The reality is that it will take years, he said. “DoD and Congress will have to help build it to full capability,” Thompson said. “The early focus is to get it up and functioning at some level to ensure we don’t fall short on operations.”

SpaceNews Inc. will use the information you provide on this form to be in touch with you. You can change your mind at any time by clicking the unsubscribe link in the footer of any email you receive from us. For more information about our privacy practices please visit our website. By clicking below, you agree that we may process your information in accordance with these terms.

By clicking below to subscribe, you acknowledge that your information will be transferred to Mailchimp for processing. Learn more about Mailchimp's privacy practices here.