President Trump is expected to sign a draft space policy directive in the coming weeks to establish the Space Force within the Department of the Air Force as the sixth branch of the U.S. armed forces, SpaceNews reported Monday. The Department of Defense noted the new service would only operate temporarily under the same department with the Air Force.
The space policy directive states the Space Force will have its own four-star chief of staff, a civilian undersecretary of space and run as its own department in the future. After DoD establishes the Space Force, the directive requires the secretary of defense to conduct a “periodic review” and recommend a timeline to move the new service into a “Department of the Space Force.”
“This department will take over some or all responsibilities for the U.S. Space Force from the Department of the Air Force,” the document states.
Officials said the Pentagon’s recommendation to put the Space Force under the Department of the Air Force comes as many members of Congress warned that creating a new military department would be costly.