SDA to Become Part of Space Force in October
The three-year-old Space Development Agency is on track to be absorbed by the Space Force in October. The agency’s director revealed that under the plan approved by Congress in the 2022 National Defense Authorization Act, the SDA will become part of the Space Force but will remain separate from its procurement bureaucracy, the Space Systems Command, SpaceNews reported Wednesday.
On Wednesday, Director Derek Tournear told attendees of a Mitchel Insitute virtual event that many of the details of the reorganization are still being negotiated. He stressed, however, that the impending realignment will not interfere with SDA’s plans to launch its first batch of Transport Layer satellites this fall and to procure additional satellites.
The organizational realignment is moving forward as SDA ramps up the procurement of satellites for its low Earth orbit Transport Layer Tranche 1 constellation, which is intended to provide communications services to the military. SDA also is developing sensor satellites to detect and track ballistic and hypersonic missiles.
Once integrated into the Space Force, the SDA will report to the chief of space operations, currently Gen. John Raymond. However, its procurement function will be under the newly-established position of assistant secretary of the Air Force for space acquisition and integration, a civilian office.
Meanwhile, Tournear said that once the transition is complete, SDA will be co-equal with the Space Rapid Capabilities Office and the Space Systems Command.
The SDA was created to implement the National Defense Space Architecture, ensuring continued U.S. leadership in space in an era of renewed power competition.
Tags: Derek Tournear John Raymond reorganization space Space Development Agency SpaceNews US Space Force