The US Space Force may be a newly formed branch of the Armed Forces, but it is already looking into launching programs for specialized space warfare. With this, the US Space Force could take the first steps into becoming the country’s military branch with space warfighting skills and expertise.
In a statement to Space News, Space Force operations and communications director Brig. Gen. DeAnna Burt stated that it is pertinent for the newly formed Armed Forces branch to “build depth” this year.
Among the ways that this could be done is to offer specialized career paths to graduates of the Air Force undergraduate space training school. Among these specialized paths are space electronic warfare, orbital warfare, space access and sustainment, and space battle management.
Space Force is being formed with US Air Force officers and enlisted operators who will lateral over, though plans are also in place to develop its own officers who will be trained for space operations. Thus, just like graduates of the US Air Force pilot training course could choose a specialized career track flying bombers or large cargo aircraft, space professionals will have similar, space-oriented options.
Burt explained that the specialization of Space Force’s ranks would likely transpire over an extended period of time. “It’s going to take ten years before those individuals are squadron commanders and squadron superintendents. That’s how the culture is going to change as well. But it takes time. I wish it would go faster, but it just takes time,” she said.
The Brig. Gen. further added that Space Force’s ranks would have to be prepared for the possibility of rival countries targeting US satellites with weapons like missiles or electronic systems. Resources are also being allotted for technologies such as space simulators. “We have to train our crews in very high fidelity sims,” Burt said.
Plans are underway for the US Space Force to start and set up an “orbital warfare wing” in Colorado Springs, where the Armed Forces branch’s leaders and ranks will train.