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Report: U.S. Inks Allied Space Cooperation Agreement

International Space StationThe United States has signed a memorandum of understanding with Australia, the United Kingdom and Canada on the sidelines of the 30th Space Symposium to continue working on allied space cooperation, Breaking Defense reported Tuesday.

Colin Clark writes that Brian Weeden of the Secure World Foundation shed light on what the partnership agreement means for space efforts and called it a symbolic gesture that could mean practical, operational changes in the future.

Weeden, who served at U.S. Strategic Command’s Joint Space Operations Center, also told Clark that the MOU statement on “combined space operations” could refer to separate national operational centers that communicate and coordinate using agreed strategies toward a common goal.

The space expert cited the Schriever Wargame held at Nellis Air Force Base in 2010 as one of the likely inspirations for the agreement.

Clark writes that in that war exercise, participants used the same joint allied approach to freely share data that afforded highly accurate space situational awareness.

He cites a commentary from then Lt. Gen. Larry James, commander of the 14th Force and Strategic Command’s Joint Functional Component Command for Space, who said that the framework used at Schriever 2010 “facilitated more rapid deployment and employment of coalition capabilities… (and would be) an excellent model upon which to base a real-world combined operations center.”

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