An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Home : Media : News : News Article View
NEWS | March 30, 2023

Space Development Agency to Launch 10 Satellites

By By C. Todd Lopez, DOD News

WASHINGTON -- The first 10 of 28 satellites which make up Tranche 0 of the "Proliferated Warfighter Space Architecture," are set to launch tomorrow morning out of Vandenberg Space Force Base in California.

The Space Development Agency is responsible for the launch and for development of the Proliferated Warfighter Space Architecture. Tomorrow's group of satellites, which the SDA is also calling the "Warfighter Immersion Tranche," comes just four years after the SDA was stood up.

"We're pretty excited about that because this is the first dedicated SDA launch," Derek M. Tournear, director of the Space Development Agency, said. "All of the satellites on the rocket tomorrow will be SDA satellites and it's the first launch of the Proliferated Warfighter Space Architecture. We're right at two and a half years from order to orbit — so we're pretty excited to show that the model actually does work to be able to do that, that proliferation, to get the capabilities to the warfighter at speed."

The Proliferated Warfighter Space Architecture system will eventually include hundreds of satellites, delivered in "tranches" every two years, with each tranche providing more capability than the last.

The NDSA's network of hundreds of optically-connected satellites will deliver two primary capabilities to warfighters on the ground. The first is beyond line-of-sight targeting for ground and maritime time-sensitive targets, which includes mobile missiles and ships, for instance. The system will provide the ability to detect those targets, track them, calculate a fire control solution and then deliver that solution down to a weapons platform so that the target can be destroyed. The second capability is similar to the first, but for enemy missiles already in flight.

Following tomorrow's launch, those first ten satellites — eight of which are "transport layer" satellites and two of which are "tracking layer" satellites — will undergo calibration and their efficacy will also be evaluated with a series of tests.

"When they're first up there, they're going to go through a period of calibration and then after calibration, then they'll look for targets of opportunity ... launches that we're able to detect and track to help get calibration data," Tournear said.

Actual tracking test events designed by the SDA, using U.S.-flown aircraft, will come in spring of '24, Tournear said.

"On the transport side ... we have a lot of lower-level exercises that the warfighters are going to participate in to test everything out," Tournear said. "Most of those on the Link-16 side will start out with tests at Eglin Test and Training facility to demonstrate that, and really iron out all the bugs and figure out exactly how to do this connectivity with terrestrial Link-16 radios in space. And then we'll start to start to participate in some other exercises then in the Indo-Pacom region after that, primarily working with the Marines and some of their planned exercises."

That warfighters will be involved in working out how the Tranche 0 satellites can be used is why it's also called the "Warfighter Immersion Tranche," Mike Eppolito, the Tranche 0 program director, said.

"We are demonstrating the core architecture that will evolve in future tranches," Eppolito said. "The satellites that we have up there, the intent there is to get them in the warfighters hands so they can start developing their techniques to be able to use them, to give them the timeline to go through their training and to allow them to start thinking about how they would use the larger constellation once we have it an orbit. So ours is intended to be the demonstration tranche that allows them to sort of get their feet wet and start using the capabilities that we're putting on orbit."

The other 18 satellites that make up the 28 satellites in Tranche 0 are expected to launch in June. The SDA plans to launch new tranches of satellites every two years.

The Proliferated Warfighter Space Architecture involves seven layers, which include a mesh network of hundreds of optically interconnected satellites in orbit that make up its "transport" layer. There will also be tracking, custody, deterrence, navigation, battle management and support layers.


Like Us
Follow Us



PACAF RQ-4 Global Hawks Arrive at Yokota Air Base
An RQ-4 Global Hawk, assigned to the 4th Reconnaissance Squadron, 319th Operation Group, Andersen Air Force Base, Guam, sits on the flightline at Yokota Air Base, Japan, May 2, 2023. U.S. Pacific Air Forces began positioning RQ-4 Global Hawks at Yokota Air Base, Japan, from Andersen Air Force Base, Guam, on May 15 to provide theater-wide enduring operations in support of maintaining a free and open Indo-Pacific. (U.S, Air Force photo by Yasuo Osakabe)
May 25, 2023 - YOKOTA AIR BASE, Japan -- U.S. Pacific Air Forces began positioning RQ-4 Global Hawks at Yokota Air Base, Japan, from Andersen Air Force Base, Guam, on May 15 to provide theater-wide enduring operations in support of...

U.S. Partnership with U.K., Australia Enhances Security
U.S. Marines with 3d Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, Ground Combat Element, Marine Rotational Force-Darwin 22, establish defensive positions as MV-22 Ospreys approach for landing during an airfield seizure event as part of exercise Koolendong 22 at Royal Australian Air Force Base Curtin, WA, Australia, July 18, 2022. Exercise Koolendong 22 is a combined and joint force exercise focused on expeditionary advanced base operations conducted by U.S. Marines, U.S. Soldiers, U.S. Airmen, and Australian Defence Force personnel. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Cedar Barnes)
May 25, 2023 - WASHINGTON -- In September 2021, the U.S., Australia and the U.K. announced a new partnership, AUKUS, meant to strengthen alliances and security, especially in the Indo-Pacific. In March, plans for moving forward on the first...

Enduring PACE Exercise Bolsters Communications Readiness throughout South Korea
U.S. Air Force Senior Airman James Angeley, left, 607th Air Communications Squadron, radio maintenance technician, and U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Carlos Perez Ortiz, right, 607 ACOMS, radio frequency transmission system technician sets up a ground multiband terminal during exercise Enduring PACE, May 18, 2023, at Osan Air Base, South Korea. Exercise Enduring PACE put communication equipment to the test and involved communications Airmen from the 8th Fighter Wing at Kunsan AB, the 51st Fighter Wing, the 607th Air Operations Center at Osan AB and other communications units dispersed throughout South Korea. (U.S. Air Force photo by Master Sgt. Kenneth W. Norman)
May 25, 2023 - OSAN AIR BASE, South Korea -- In modern warfare, the ability to communicate rapidly and effectively can be the difference between victory and defeat. To effectively maintain Fight Tonight readiness and provide the best...

U.S. Indo-Pacific Command kicks off Large Scale Global Exercise 23
May 25, 2023 - CAMP SMITH, Hawaii -- U.S. Indo-Pacific Command will conduct Large Scale Global Exercise 23 (LSGE 23) beginning May 24 through Aug. 19, 2023. LSGE23 is a Department of Defense exercise executed by U.S. Indo-Pacific Command...

U.S. Coast Guard Post-Typhoon Mawar Update 1
Station Apra Harbor 45-foot Response Boats weather the residual storm as U.S. Coast Guard crews in Guam begin assessments and reconstitution efforts on May 25, 2023, after Typhoon Mawar devastated the island. Crews are working to resume operations and reopen the ports. (U.S. Coast Guard photo Lt. j.g. Drew Lovullo)
May 25, 2023 - SANTA RITA, Guam -- Following the devastating impact of Typhoon Mawar, U.S. Coast Guard Forces Micronesia Sector Guam, MAT/WAT Guam, and USCGC Sequoia (WLB 215) crews are actively assessing the situation and coordinating...