Space Force to establish a new command to oversee technology development and acquisition at Los Angeles Air Force Base in El Segundo
LOS ANGELES- The U.S. Space Force announced Thursday that one of its three major commands will be headquartered at the Space and Missile Systems Center at the Los Angeles Air Force Base in El Segundo, CNS reported.
The Space Systems Command will oversee efforts to develop, acquire, launch and sustain military space systems, according to Rep. Ted Lieu, D-Los Angeles, who co-chairs the California Aerospace Caucus.
“With every passing day, space becomes more critical for our national security and for commercial activities, and I’m pleased that Southern California and Los Angeles Air Force Base will be at the center of an increased emphasis on space,” Lieu said.
“Southern California was already leading the way on aerospace and space innovation, and establishing the Space Systems Command at (the Los Angeles Air Force Base) will position our region for further growth … We are ushering in a new era focused on space and I’m thrilled Southern California and LA AFB will be at the forefront.“
Lieu, who was stationed himself at the base while on active duty in the Air Force, noted on Twitter Thursday in light of the announcement that he worked as a member of the Torrance City Council to prevent the Department of Defense from closing or moving the base in Los Angeles.
According to the U.S. Space Force, the SSC will be responsible for identifying, prototyping and fielding innovative, space-based solutions to support and meet the demands of the National Defense Strategy.
It will also provide oversight to science and technology activities of the U.S. Space Force, which has two other major commands along with the SSC: the already-established Space Operations Command and the planned Space Training and Readiness Command.
The base’s Space and Missile Systems Center will be redesignated as the SSC, which is expected to launched over summer. First, President Joe Biden will nominate a U.S. Space Force three-star general officer of the SSC, who must be confirmed by the Senate.
California Gov. Gavin Newsom called the decision to headquarter the SSC in Southern California “a critical investment in California’s vital aerospace and defense industries” and said it would mean new good-paying jobs in the region.
“My administration made it a priority to push for more federal investment in the defense aerospace industry, and this new Space Systems Command — which will have nationwide authority over launches and procurement – – is a big win for the innovation economy that has made California the nation’s engine of transformative growth, technology and ideas,” he said.
The SSC will also provide administrative and integration support to the Space Rapid Capabilities Office at Kirtland Air Force Base in New Mexico. The office currently reports to the Chief of Space Operations.
“The US Air Force has just announced that Space Force will be setting up one of three Space Systems Commands at the Los Angeles Air Force Base in El Segundo. This is huge news for our region“, LA County Supervisor Janice Hahn has released.
“The LA Air Force Base isn’t just the anchor for thousands of jobs in SoCal’s aerospace industry — it is the brain trust of the Air Force. Today’s move is a resounding vote of confidence by the Federal Government in what has long been a pillar of our local economy — and in the talented people who work there“.