The sharing of intelligence and simulation data early on in military space system design will help accelerate the fielding of space systems, Lt. Gen. Nina Armagno, the U.S. Space Force director of staff, said on Dec. 15.
In a forum with the Washington Space Business Roundtable (WSBR), Armagno mentioned a classified session with industry held by Andrew Cox, the director of the Space Warfighting Analysis Center (SWAC), on Oct. 27–the first SWAC business fair. Cox briefed industry representatives on threat intelligence, the center’s digital threat models, a future missile warning force design for the United States, and other force design concepts. U.S. Space Force Chief of Space Operations Gen. John “Jay” Raymond said in August that the center had finished the missile warning force design and had evaluated thousands of force design concepts and had narrowed them down through analysis and collaboration with the Missile Defense Agency, the intelligence community, and a number of acquisition authorities (Defense Daily, Aug. 24).
“We’re taking a new approach with our industry partners,” Armagno told the WSBR forum on Dec. 15. “Now our nation’s space industrial base, which is the best in the world, has information earlier than normal, more information than normal, and doing this partnership early makes a lot of sense to us. We’re confident that this approach will bring the solutions our nation needs much faster than the traditional years-long requirements, development and acquisition cycles. It will also give space acquisition professionals insight into industry’s efforts much earlier.”
Besides devising future Space Force plans for missile warning and tracking that improve system resilience through an open, layered architecture, SWAC is charged with force design efforts for wideband satellite communications (SATCOM) that mix military and commercial systems with protected tactical waveforms; position, navigation and timing; environmental monitoring through a proliferated low Earth orbit constellation; space domain awareness; strategic SATCOM; tactical intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance; and space control.
On Dec. 15, Armagno noted the first SSC Tactically Responsive Space launch last June of a technology demonstration satellite from a Northrop Grumman [NOC] Pegasus XL rocket (Defense Daily, June 15).
The latter, carried on a modified version of the company’s “Stargazer” L-1011 aircraft from Vandenberg Space Force Base, Calif., delivered the satellite to orbit last June 13.
Such responsive launch may become useful, if a critical U.S. satellite sustains damage and becomes inoperable.
Armagno said that for last June’s launch SSC “compressed the normal multi-month preparation timeline to just under three weeks and demonstrated a possible rapid reconstituiton capability for the nation…should a very bad day in space happen and the country need to recover.”
Space Force will mark its second anniversary on Dec. 20.