Defense

May 15, 2013

STRATCOM strives to build coalitions for space operations

Donna Miles
American Forces Press Service

Recognizing the value of multinational coalitions for operations in the land, maritime and air domains, officials at U.S. Strategic Command here hope to forge a coalition that shares assets and capabilities in space.

The U.S. and its allies are discussing details for the first agreement of its kind promoting combined space operations, Brig. Gen. David D. Thompson, the†STRATCOM’s deputy director of global operations, told American Forces Press Service.

The agreement could spell out specific areas in which the participating nations will work together, and what each will contribute to those efforts, Thompson said.

The agreement will formalize an arrangement tested last year during a period discovery. Based on the findings, the U.S. and its allies agreed in September to continue working toward closer combined space operations.

Thompson said he hopes the agreement will be the first step in forging international military-to-military cooperation in space that is essential to all. The STRATCOM staff already is promoting the concept with what is hoped to be the next wave of nations to join the coalition.

“Our intent with combined space operations is to mirror some of the partnerships we have in other mission areas that are long-term and enduring,” Thompson said.

Space is vital to military operations, providing an array of capabilities that give space-faring nations’ forces a military advantage, he said. These include intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities that enhance war fighters’ situational awareness, space-based communications that provide them instant, global communications, and global positioning systems that deliver highly accurate navigation and targeting positions.

“This gives them an awareness and understanding that enhances their capabilities to conduct operations the way no other armed forces can today,” Thompson said. “That’s why it’s vitally important to our military forces.”

However, as more nations, organizations and commercial companies vie to take advantage of space-based capabilities, the once-pristine space domain is becoming increasingly congested and competitive, Thompson said.

And of particular concern to military leaders, space is an increasingly contested domain, with potential adversaries hoping to level the playing field by denying access to space and space-based capabilities, he said. The response, Thompson said, must be the same unity in numbers that has proven itself out in every other domain. Coalitions provide more capability than any one nation can provide alone, while also sending an important deterrent message to potential adversaries, he said.

Unlike recent coalitions, formed for specific periods to accomplish specific objectives, Thompson said he hopes those formed for operations in space endure.

“We have enduring requirements and enduring interests that are common among ourselves. So we see this as a longer-standing coalition with these nations,” he said.

Working together to support their shared interests and objectives, Thompson said, the coalition members will help ensure that space remains a global common open to all.

“Joining together in a coalition is a statement of assurance that each nation is committed to effective, mutually supportive conduct of operations in space,” he said. “We are united in a coalition sense when it comes to operations in space and providing those capabilities for each nation.”




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Army photograph

Composites key to tougher, lighter armaments

Army photograph XM-360 test firing at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md., in 2007, is shown. The Army is on the cusp of revolutionizing materials that go into armament construction, making for stronger, lighter and more durable weapo...
 
 

NTTR supports first F-35B integration into USMC’s weapons school exercise

The Nevada Test and Training Range was part of history April 21, when four U.S. Marine Corps-assigned F-35B Lightning IIs participated in its first Marine Corps’ Final Exercise of the Weapons and Tactics Instructor course on the NTTR’s ranges. The Final Exercise, or FINEX, is the capstone event to the U.S. Marine Corps Marine Aviation...
 
 

AF Test Pilot School applications due in June

The 2015 Air Force Test Pilot School selection board will convene July 20-24 to consider candidates for July 2016 and January 2017 classes. Applications are due to the Air Force Personnel Center by June 5. The board will select applicants for fighter, multi-engine aircraft, helicopter and remotely piloted aircraft pilot, combat systems officers – to...
 

 
Air Force photograph by A1C Stephen G. Eigel

Last MC-130P Combat Shadows in the Pacific retire

Air Force photograph by A1C Stephen G. Eigel An MC-130P Combat Shadow awaits its final checks on Kadena Air Base, Japan, before departing for the “boneyard” at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Ariz., April 15, 2015. The 17th S...
 
 
F22-hero1

F-22 test squadron recognizes decorated squadron member, Vietnam hero

Air Force photograph by Jet Fabara William Freckleton, 412th Range Squadron lead F-22 range control officer, poses before his F-16D incentive flight April 21. Freckleton is the only decorated Vietnam veteran at the 411th Flight...
 
 
Courtesy photograph

AFRL redesigns mock UAV, ‘Surrogate Predator’

Courtesy photograph An enhanced Surrogate Predator 3 is prepared for takeoff. Intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance sensors were added to the Cessna 182 so it can mimic a Predator unmanned aerial vehicle. Air Force Rese...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>