53rd Space Operations Squadron

The 53rd Space Operations Squadron is a component of Delta 8, headquartered at Schriever Space Force Base, Colorado, with detachments located at Fort Detrick, Maryland; Fort Meade, Maryland; Landstuhl, Germany; Wahiawa, Hawaii; and Okinawa, Japan.

Taking over operational and mission area functions that have traditionally belonged to the Army, the 53rd Space Operations Squadron was activated 29 June, 2022 with the responsibility of managing the Wideband Global SATCOM (WGS) and Defense Satellite Communications System (DSCS) constellations. The Squadron controls payload functionality for all U.S. Wideband MILSATCOM.

53 SOPS provides mission assurance and continuous operational support through real-time correlated monitoring, control, and management of MILSATCOM through its five geographically separated Wideband SATCOM Operations Centers (WSOC). Our Guardians enable "Fight SATCOM" and provide user support 24/7/365. The WSOCs are the first line of defense for assigned Satellites, Terminals, and Users, providing assured access to DoD-owned wideband satellite communications.

Guardians of the Squadron are tasked with facilitating end-to-end management of transmission and payload functions as well as the global situational awareness required to ensure seamless, strategic mission command and connectivity for critical subscribers ranging from the president of the United States, national agencies, and international partners to warfighters across the globe.

The WGS Constellation is constantly expanding and evolving. WGS 10 Launched 2019 and became fully mission capable in 2020. With WGS 11 scheduled for launch in 2024, the newest platform will enhance the Squadron's throughput and provide more robust functionality to defensive space operations and space domain awareness.

Our Guardians support Joint Operations worldwide and are prepared for the next major conflict, all while fighting through a denied, degraded, and disrupted Space Operating Environment (D3SOE). They continuously hone and develop skills, adapt to new mission requirements, and always hold the sky...TITANS IN SPACE!

The lineage of the 53rd Space Operations Squadron (53SOPS) traces back to the United States Army's need for more specialized signal units following World War I. The 53d Signal Battalion was constituted on 18 October 1927. Activated 1 June 1941 at Camp Bowie, Texas, the Battalion began its long and storied campaign history to include France, Italy, and Tunisia during World War II. The unit proved critical to the success of the II Corps' operations by providing multichannel FM radio relay, running hundreds of miles of spiral-four field cable, and providing invaluable signals intelligence functionalities during the Liberation of Rome.

Inactivated 30 September 1945 in Italy and reactivated 21 September 1954, the unit entered into a dozen operations during the Vietnam War, most notably the Tet Counteroffensive. Again inactivated on 23 June 1971 at Fort Lewis, Washington, the unit's mission was assumed by Army Space Command (ARSPACE) when it was created in April 1988. As a field operating agency of the deputy chief of staff for operations and plans, this mission set shifted to satellite payload control with units at Fort Dix, NJ and Camp Roberts, CA. The new command was instrumental in bringing space assets to the Warfighter during Operation Desert Storm -- the first "Space War."

The US Army's DSCS Operations Centers took full control of the DSCS payload mission in 1992, with the closing of the last two USAF control stations at Onizuka AB, CA and Clark AB, Philippines. On May 1, 1995, ARSPACE's Military Satellite Communications Directorate (MILSATCOM) Directorate became the 1st Satellite Control (SATCON) Battalion -- the first Army battalion with an operational mission tied to space systems and capabilities. Like its predecessor, the unit was responsible for planning and controlling the networks and payloads aboard the DSCS constellation.

Forecasting the need for mission and manning requirements, along with the evolution of satellite communications platforms, the 53d Signal Battalion was once again activated on 16 October 2005 at Peterson Air Force Base, Colorado. Absorbing the mission of the previous unit, the 53d bore a new suffix - SATCON.

Operational and mission area functions transferred to Space Force with the activation of the 53rd Space Operations Squadron on June 29, 2022. The 53d Signal Battalion (SATCON) is tentatively set to deactivate in Spring of 2023.

[Current as of August 2022]