OFFUTT AIR FORCE BASE, Neb. − Commander, U.S. Strategic Command (USSTRATCOM), Adm. Cecil D. Haney, welcomed National Reconnaissance Office director Betty Sapp and other senior leaders in defense and intelligence communities for a meeting at USSTRATCOM headquarters, Aug. 26, 2016, in the latest iteration of the ongoing Joint Space Doctrine and Tactics Forum (JSDTF).
“Forums such as these challenge our thinking and build greater understanding of the space environment and threats we face. They are increasingly important to foster the exchange of perceptions and to have a rich dialogue,” Haney said.
Established in January 2015 by Haney following the direction of the deputy secretary of defense, the JSDTF serves as an nexus to increase space collaboration and coordination between defense and intelligence communities, with the goal to advance the development of tactics, techniques and procedures and better facilitate information sharing, as well as enhance information sharing through exercises, doctrine and lessons learned.
The JSDTF, along with Joint Interagency Combined Space Operations Center (JICSpOC) established in October 2015, also ensures the U.S. outpaces emerging and advancing space threats to protect our nation""s critical space assets should an adversary ever seek to extend a conflict to space.
Co-chaired by Haney and Sapp, JSDTF joins the commanders of Air Force Space Command, USSTRATCOM""s component command for space, U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command/Army Forces Strategic Command, U.S. Fleet Cyber Command, and U.S. Marine Corps Forces Strategic Command, as being responsible for establishing priorities, approving key initiatives, steering and assessing progress. They also focus on exercises and training, and provide recommendations and conclusions on issues related to space, such as space situational awareness.
The ability to share space situational awareness (SSA) information significantly increased with Aug. 19 launches of the third and fourth satellites in the Geosynchronous Space Situational Awareness Program (GSSAP). The GSSAP satellites collect SSA data in a near-geosynchronous orbit, unobstructed by weather or atmosphere, and subsequently enable more accurate tracking and identifying of resident space objects.
“By gaining comprehensive SSA, we are better able to provide more robust spaceflight safety information, assisting the U.S. and its allies in conducting responsible and safe space operations,” Haney said. “Space capabilities touch every facet of our lives, and all nations benefit from a safe and secure space domain.”
The meeting also allowed forum members to discuss improving operational capabilities in space, consistent with the 2011 National Security Space Strategy (NSSS). They emphasized the crucial role intelligence plays in that endeavor, and underscored its importance to the NSSS and toward ensuring resilience in space.
In addition to space operations, USSTRATCOM""s Unified Command Plan-assigned missions include strategic deterrence; cyberspace operations; joint electronic warfare; global strike; missile defense; intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance; combating weapons of mass destruction; and analysis and targeting.