Space Force unveils commercial space strategy

The Space Force released its Commercial Space Strategy April 10, which details how the service is retooling processes and cultivating commercial partnerships to increase U.S. competitive advantage. The Commercial Space strategy aligns with the Department of Defense Commercial Space Integration Strategy released on April 2.

The strategy signals a fundamental mindset shift for the Space Force and how it supports the Joint force; the service will institutionalize and operationalize commercial capabilities by integrating space goods, services, and activities.

“The Space Force has formalized how we want to move forward with commercial industry in a new approach to reset and improve our connection to the space economy; we need their innovations,” said Lt. Gen. Shawn Bratton, deputy chief of space operations, strategy, plans, programs, and requirements. “We carefully constructed the Commercial Space Strategy to drive development of more resilient and combat-capable architectures while deploying them faster, in greater numbers, and at a lower cost.

The Space Force will implement four lines of effort to achieve this strategy: (1) Collaborative Transparency; (2) Operational and Technical Integration; (3) Risk Management; and (4) Secure the Future.

“The nation and the world have seen a renaissance in space with unprecedented innovation emerging in commercial and allied space systems in the past decade. Unfortunately, this renaissance has been accompanied by the emergence of strategic competitors who have been and are fielding threats against all space capabilities,” said Chief of Space Operations Gen. Chance Saltzman and Frank Calvelli, assistant secretary of the Air Force for space acquisition and integration in the strategy foreword. “We will leverage American industrial strength to counter threats to our advantages in space; we owe it to American forces putting their lives on the line, to American businesses developing solutions to outpace the adversary, and to the American taxpayers expecting us to get the most out of their dollar.”

Priority mission areas for new commercial integration are Tactical Surveillance, Reconnaissance, and Tracking; Space-Based Environmental Monitoring; Positioning, Navigation, and Timing; and Space Access, Mobility and Logistics; as well as the continued integration of commercial capabilities into mature mission areas like Satellite Communication, Launch, and Space Domain Awareness.

The Space Force will use four criteria, in line with DoD policy and guidelines, to inform decision-making related to utilizing commercial space solutions: (1) Operational Utility; (2) Feasibility; (3) Resilience by Design; and (4) Speed to Fielding.

Space Force support to combatant commanders relies on the ability to operate in space freely, effectively and with certainty. The pacing challenge is moving aggressively to challenge U.S.’ space supremacy and the ability to operate there – partnering with industry under Commercial Space Strategy guidance will enhance national security and fortify capabilities.

“We must tap into the spirit of American entrepreneurship, innovation, and vibrant competitive markets to be successful and sustain our competitive advantage across the spectrum of conflict in this era of Great Power Competition,” Saltzman and Calvelli said.

Source: U.S. Space Force

Your competitors read IC News each day. Shouldn’t you? Learn more about our subscription options, and keep up with every move in the IC contracting space.