October 16, 2021

A brigade of the United States Army instructs military men about the importance of space

2 min read

Military personnel on the ground cannot shoot, move, or communicate without the use of satellites in orbit. The Army’s 1st Space Brigade seeks to instill this mantra in troops all across the planet. Col. Donald Brooks, the brigade’s commander, stated, “We go in and help educate.”

The Army’s 1st Space Brigade is part of the US Army Space and Missile Defense Command and is based at Fort Carson in Colorado Springs. It was founded in 2005 in reaction to the military’s increasing utilization of satellites and the ground stations in combat. Many of its almost 2,000 troops are stationed in 11 different nations.

Members of the brigade keep an eye on the status of satellites in orbit while on deployment. They also assist commanders in analyzing data from the missile satellites and other space-based intelligence such as imagery. Brooks, who assumed command of this brigade in the month of March, said people are frequently startled to learn he is an Army officer and mistakenly believe he is a member of the Space Force. On the occasion of the Space and Missile Defense Symposium, he informed SpaceNews, “I am asked every day if I’m a guardian.”

According to Brooks, there is a lot of misunderstanding regarding the military space agencies and their performance. He’s seen that many people don’t understand the distinction between Space Command (which is a combatant command) and Space Force (which is a military branch). “We’re still educating, and that’s fine,” Brooks added.

Brooks stated, “Space allows warfighting organizations to be more efficient and effective in their abilities to shoot, maneuver, and communicate.” When space brigade troops work with other military groups across the country, they educate this.

Forces in the field are often unaware of how they rely on satellites for every feature of their activities. They are amazed to learn that adversaries will deliberately jam or interrupt satellite signals, he stated. Artillery batteries can’t fire their accurate guided munitions without the Global Positioning System, and maneuvering formations can’t figure out where they are without it.

Brooks explained, “We help them minimize how to fight through prohibited circumstances.” “For example, if you’re a maneuver force and you’re receiving jamming, then you go stand behind a dig a hole, vehicle, and place the receiver down in the hole,” he says.

He explained, “If you can interrupt that line of vision, you can reobtain GPS and reacquire your navigation.” The 1st Space Brigade, according to Brooks, will remain in the Army, but other Army divisions that control communications satellites will be moved to the Space Force. The Satellite Operations Brigade of the Army, which is also a component of the Army Space and Missile Defense Command, is sending units to the Space Force. The payloads of the other military communication satellites and Wideband Global Satcom are controlled by the satellite operations brigade.

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