OFFUTT AIR FORCE BASE, Neb. â€“ U.S. Strategic Command (USSTRATCOM) signed a technical arrangement with Germany to share Space Situational Awareness (SSA) services and information, Jan. 9, 2015.
The arrangement, signed by the USSTRATCOM Director of Plans and Policy, U.S. Air Force Maj. Gen. David D. Thompson, and the Defence AttachÃ© at the Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany in Washington, D.C., German Army Brig. Gen. Dirk H. Backen, will enable and enhance each nation’s awareness within the space domain and increase the safety of their spaceflight operations.
“Space Situational Awareness requires cooperation, and arrangements such as this allow us to partner more effectively,” said U.S. Navy Adm. Cecil D. Haney, USSTRATCOM commander. “As more countries, companies and organizations field space capabilities and benefit from the use of space systems, it is in our collective interest to act responsibly, promote transparency and enhance the long-term sustainability, stability, safety and security of space.”
Germany joins seven nations, the United Kingdom, the Republic of Korea, France, Canada, Italy, Japan and Australia, and two international organizations, the European Space Agency and the European Organisation for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites, already participating in SSA data sharing with the United States.Â Additionally, USSTRATCOM leaders have signed agreements with 46 commercial entities in 16 countries.
SSA data sharing enhances multinational space cooperation and streamlines the process for USSTRATCOM partners to request specific information gathered by its Joint Space Operations Center at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. The information is crucial for launch support, satellite maneuver planning, support for on-orbit anomalies, electromagnetic interference reporting and investigation, satellite decommissioning activities and on-orbit conjunction assessments.