As the Space Development Agency prepares to join the Space Force in October, the US Space Force has committed to expanding the Space Networking Center at Grand Forks Air Force Base.
Sen. John Hoeven, R-ND, said in a Wednesday, May 18 press release that he received the pledge from Space Force chief John Raymond this week. The Space Networking Center at GFAFB supports the SDA’s low Earth orbit satellite mission and will serve as the backbone for all global US military communications.
“Grand Forks Air Force Base is the perfect location to house the Space Development Agency’s first Space Networking Center in support of the future Low Earth Orbit Satellite Network,” Hoeven said in a press release. . “We have worked with SDA and the Air Force to secure this new mission, which is essential for our nation to stay ahead of our adversaries in the development of critical new technologies.”
The satellite mission comes as all US military branches begin to transition from a radio wave-based system to a laser-based communication system. The satellites are partially designed by the defense and technology company, General Atomics, at the Grand Sky commercial and research drone park near GFAFB. Hoeven announced the satellite mission in September last year and then worked to secure $18 million in funding in fiscal year 2022 to establish SDA’s Space Networking Centers.
Hoeven and Sen. Kevin Cramer, RN.D., worked with SDA Director Derek Tournear to identify funding priorities to advance the new satellite networking hub. They also discussed this priority with Air Force Chief of Staff General Charles Brown during a visit to Grand Forks.
Hoeven said that over time, the mission could include not only operating SDA satellites, but also linking them to unmanned aerial systems, which would complement the GFAFB’s role in intelligence, surveillance, and intelligence missions. Air Force reconnaissance.
Hoeven also hosted Tournear in Grand Forks to outline efforts to establish the new center and announce the new laser communications project.
Summary of news:
- The Space Force has agreed to build a networking center at Grand Forks Air Force Base.
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