Space Delta 2, Detachment 2

Established in September 2020, Space Delta 2 Detachment 2 serves as a vital bridge between the research and operations communities, fostering a collaborative environment aimed at advancing Space Domain Awareness (SDA) technologies at the Starfire Optical Range (SOR). The SOR's unique capabilities in monitoring, observing, detecting, and identifying resident space objects play a crucial role in providing effective space situational awareness for USSPACECOM, safeguarding and defending our national assets in space.  Operating under Space Operations Command (SpOC) Delta 2, the detachment synergizes the available resources, blending research and operational strengths to develop cutting-edge SDA technologies by leveraging the expertise of the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL). Detachment 2 aims to meet the challenges of the ever-evolving and contested space domain through this collaborative mission, enabling operationally relevant SDA capabilities, and bolstering our national security in space.

Location - Mount Fugate

The detachment operates at the base of Mount Fugate, named after Dr. Robert Fugate who is considered the father of adaptive optics and modern astronomy. The technology to adapt for atmospheric turbulence was considered a classified project in the 1970s and the technology was declassified in 1991. The GuideStar technology developed at the SOR is now integrated with every astronomical telescope worldwide.

Research to Ops Transitions

• Satellite detection and identification

• Atmospheric compensation

• Resolved imaging

• Closely Spaced Objects


• Satellite imagery

• Advanced image post processing

• Closely Spaced Objects detection


  • Operational Readiness Excellence: The SOR capability and Detachment 2 are operationally ready as of August 2022 for CCMD plans and operations. To ensure unit proficiency and readiness, Det 2 integrates C2 exercises with Starfire quarterly tests.
  • Large Force Exercises participation to inform the operations community on emerging technologies (e.g., Space Flag, Neptune Eagle, Neptune Hawk, Pacific Sentry, etc.)
  • Rehearsal of Concept (ROC) drills weekly & Quarterly Exercises with NSDC
  • Mature Training Program: Focus on developing Directed Energy Space Force operators, planners, and mission executioners.  This initiative will ensure Det operations knowledge continuity and mission partners’ Directed Energy capability familiarization.
  • Partnership with AFRL, NSDC, and SpOC
  • Establish tri-agency (AFRL, Det 2, NSDC) SOR operation CONOP, Roles, & Responsibilities

(Updated July 2023)