Recently, according to media reports, the U.S. Space Army has set up a unit called “Space Delta 9 Team” to be responsible for space “orbital warfare”, which is the latest measure of the United States to promote the construction of military forces in space. In recent years, the U.S. military has accelerated the capacity-building of space operations and specially formed the “sixth service” – the Space Army. At the end of 2019, the U.S. military officially established the Space Command and the Space Army, which are responsible for space combat command and space force construction respectively. At the same time, the Space Development Bureau was established to accelerate the generation of new space military capabilities.
Since then, the U.S. military has continuously promoted the adjustment of the command structure of the space military force. According to the adjustment plan announced by the U.S. Space Force in July this year, the highest command body of the Space Force is the Office of the Secretary of Space Operations. Its operational organizations can be divided into three categories: Field Commands, Deltas and Squadrons. .
This time, the “Space Delta 9 Team” responsible for orbital warfare announced by the U.S. media is one of the newly established units to adjust the U.S. space army. The unit was reorganized from the 750th Operations Group of the Air Force and is headquartered at Shriver Air Force Base, Colorado. It is reported that the new Delta Force will be a combat unit consistent with space combat functions. According to an article recently published on the website of the Bimonthly National Interest of the United States, the main responsibility of the “Space Delta 9 Team” is to monitor space, maintain strategic deterrence in space orbit, and launch offensive space operations when necessary.
The commander of Space Delta 9 is former Air Force Colonel Casey Beard. Beard previously served as deputy director of the Space Strategy and Programs in the Office of the Secretary of Defense Policy at the U.S. Department of Defense.” The Space Delta 9th Team is divided into four operational units – the 1st Space Operations Squadron, the 3rd Space Operations Squadron, the 750th Operational Support Squadron and the 1st Task Force. Among them, the 1st Operations Squadron is responsible for the command and control of multiple systems, including the “National Defense Support Program Satellite” and the “Mid Test Satellite”; The 3rd Operational Squadron is responsible for launching and maintaining the U.S. Anti-Satellite Communication System Phase III satellite and global broadband satellites, and providing secure and stable satellite communication services to the United States and its allies; the 750th Operational Support Squadron is responsible for intelligence and other support support support tasks.
It is worth noting that the X-37B “orbital test vehicle” project developed by the U.S. military in recent years will also be assigned to the “Space Delta 9 Team”. The X-37B is a cutting-edge sensor and weapon verification platform developed by the United States to seize the power of the high frontier in space. It can be used as an air strike weapon platform for a variety of combat missions in the space battlefield.
In the first large-scale local war Gulf War after the end of the Cold War, the United States extended the tentacles of the war to outer space for the first time, and its space assets provided strong information support for ground combat troops. This also prompted the United States to realize the importance of controlling space as a strategic commanding height. As former U.S. President Kennedy said, “Whoever controls the universe controls the earth; who controls space controls the initiative of war”.
In recent years, the United States has focused on seizing the “strategic commanding heights” in space, guided by the idea of integrated joint operations, and vigorously promoted the capacity-building of space operations with practical application and exercise training. It has relatively mature space support combat capabilities, initially formed space confrontational combat capabilities, and focused on the development of space. Combat capability on the ground.
Space support operations are the basis of space combat capabilities, and play the role of “power multiplier” in joint operations. The United States currently has more than 200 military satellites in orbit, accounting for more than 50% of the global total, providing important support for the command and control, situational awareness, global mobility, precision strike, missile defense and logistics support of the U.S. military.
Among them, the U.S. military’s imaging reconnaissance satellite has high resolution, and the coverage of electronic reconnaissance satellite and ocean surveillance satellites is wide. Missile early warning satellites can issue early warning in time, forming a strict space-based reconnaissance and surveillance network, which can sense battlefield situation in real time. Navigation satellites, communication satellites and meteorological satellites can locate and accurately guide the target. Command and control, battlefield environment monitoring, etc. play an important role, which can effectively improve combat effectiveness.
In recent years, the U.S. military has accelerated the actual combat capacity-building around space confrontation and built a space offensive and defensive combat system – closely track and detect space targets through the space target monitoring system to grasp the space battlefield situation; improve the survival ability of spacecraft by strengthening key satellite components and realizing orbital maneuvers; accelerating the launch We will develop anti-satellite weapons, kinetic energy and directional energy weapons, focus on improving space offensive capabilities, and pay attention to the integration of anti-missile and anti-guard technology.
The purpose of the U.S. Space Army’s establishment of the “orbital warfare” force this time is to accelerate the coordinated development of space offensive and defensive operations, form a comprehensive integrated and defensive combat capability system, further strengthen the military advantage of space, and ensure the commanding heights of strategic competition in space. At the same time, it also sounded the horn of a new space arms race, making space, which should be peaceful, no longer peaceful.
In the future, the U.S. military will continue to strengthen the capacity-building of space confrontation operations, actively explore the research and application of space-based space confrontation technology, vigorously develop space-based space weapons systems, develop space-based laser weapons, integrate space-space strike weapons platforms and other projects, focusing on the development of new space transport vehicles. This will undoubtedly pose a complex and serious threat to our space security. Space is not only the commanding height of the strategic game of great powers, but also the high frontier of national security. We should pay close attention to the space security situation, accelerate the construction of our own space-sky integrated combat means and capabilities, and strive to grasp the strategic initiative of future high-end wars.