On December 20th, 2019 the Space Force was Officially signed into law as the sixth branch of the United States Military.
Officially making the United States Space Force the first new armed service since the airforce was established in 1947.
This is leaving a lot of people wondering what exactly is the Space Force and what is it going to do.
Is it supposed to be about protecting us against a possible alien invasion? not really.
Or is it about possibly taking the wars of our world to space? Well kind of but not quite.
To really understand the purpose of the United States Space Force we’ll have to take a quick look at the history and purposed future of this new military branch.
The United States actually first became interested in the militarizing outer space during WWII with space activities beginning immediately afterwards under the United States Air-force.
But R&D was slow as many didn’t believe in the importance of space projects, until October 4th, 1957 when the Soviet Union launched Sputnik 1 the worlds first satellite.
This was highlight in the Cold War and an event that threw rocket fuel on the space race, and what made the united states determined to get to the moon first.
Fast forward to the 1980’s at this time there were several different space programs within the U.S. and the Air Force realized they needed a central organization for it’s space program so on the 1st of September 1982.
The Air Force Space Command (AFSPC) was created as an Air Force major command, this organization would later become the United States Space Force.
According to AFSPC, its mission was to
“Provide resilient and affordable space capabilities for the Joint Force and the Nation.”
What this mainly consisted of was the launching and operation of satellites for the use communications, surveillance, intelligence, satellite based weather, missile warning, and navigation.
Now that the Air Force Space Command has been absorbed into the United States Space Force the overall mission is said to be to
Provide freedom of operation for the United States in, from, and to space.
Provide prompt and sustained space operations.
Protect the interests of the United States in space.
Deter aggression in, from, and to space, and conduct space operations
“organize, train, and equip space forces in order to protect U.S. and allied interests in
space and to provide space capabilities to the joint force. Its responsibilities include
developing military space professionals, acquiring military space systems, maturing the military doctrine for space power, and organizing space forces to present to the Combatant Commands.”
In the future this could allow for the development for space ships capable of military combat, and other space weapons as well as set up a US military organization for future ventures into space in search of resources.
The United States Space Service will start with 16,000 members with 200 standing up the Headquarters now located in the pentagon, much of the work for the next 5 years will be the transferring of existing infrastructure.
So while the USSF will take control of many military functions in outer space such as those once delegated to the air-force space command, it may be awhile into the future before we see our servicemen and women in outer space.