“A war that extends into space, or begins or extends into space, is going to be fought over great distances and at tremendous speeds. Big organizations are slow, and big organizations won’t be able to move fast enough to do what we need to do in space,” said Gen. John Raymond, chief of space operations and 2020 Wash100 Award recipient.
The Space Force’s minimal personnel will provide faster mission accomplishments with more agile methodologies. The Space Force has cut its initial estimates of the headquarters personnel it will need from more than 1,000 to fewer than 600. In its field commands, the Space Force now plans to have two fewer layers of command structure than its main predecessor, the Air Force, traditionally has had.
“The National Defense Authorization Act [which created the Space Force] gives us a clean sheet of paper about how we are going to develop our people,” Raymond added. “I think when somebody comes in, we’re looking to develop a model that allows them to be in the Space Force full time… transition to part time with the reserve component, and have much more portability between those different segments.”
The 2020 NDAA directed Department of Defense (DoD) officials to study how the Space Force should use National Guard and reserve forces, since many of the functions the new service is inheriting are performed by reserve forces today.
On Dec. 20, 2019, President Trump signed the fiscal 2020 NDAA authorizing the creation of the Space Force. Weeks prior to that, Raymond told SpaceNews that the establishment of the new service branch would help the country better protect its satellites.
“And just as U.S. Space Command has a singular focus on the war fighting aspect of space, having a Space Force with a singular focus on the space domain will be hugely, hugely helpful to us,” said Raymond. “This is really an exciting time to be in the space business. There’s a lot happening and it’s really an important time for the security of our nation.”