Down to Earth with Space Delta 8

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On this edition of Down to Earth, we’re checking in with Space Delta 8 - Satellite Communications, to meet U.S. Space Force 1st Lt. Alexander Knoedler, 4th Space Operations Squadron satellite engineer. 

Growing up as a military child, Knoedler lived in nine different states throughout his life. Following his graduation from Canon City High School in Colorado, he was accepted into the Massachusetts Institute of Technology where he acquired a master’s degree in satellite engineering. After five years in the Air Force ROTC program, Knoedler commissioned into the Space Force on Feb. 28, 2020. 

Working out of Schriever SFB, he ensures that 4 SOPS equipment is resilient to counter-space threats and also helps establish global, secure, survivable, strategic and tactical communications during peacetime and times of conflict to joint and coalition warfighters. 

“We help link forces and maintain strategic deterrence,” Knoedler said. “I’m here to make sure the U.S. stays number one in space.”  

Knoedler’s wish is to make sure Guardians understand how important access to space is for the U.S. With the dangers of collisions high in outer space due to space debris, he wouldn’t want more objects added without thought on how it can affect others who wish to venture out to outer space.  

“I don’t want someone to decide it’s a good idea to do something kinetic in space, particularly Geostationary Equatorial Orbit, without thinking about the consequences,” Knoedler said.  

Excited by the idea of going into space and exploration, Knoedler is working to become an astronaut in the future. He aims to represent and be a part of the pinnacle of technical achievement for the U.S. in space. One of his dreams as an astronaut would be to walk on the moon or Mars, and to enjoy the views he would get from extraterrestrial vantages.  

In his free time, Knoedler is a jogger, skier and backpacker. He climbed 48 out of 58 Colorado 14ers, which are mountain ranges that exceed 14,000 feet in elevation. Despite having some trouble joining the military due to medical issues, he proudly said that those tests didn’t hinder him with what he has accomplished and hopes to accomplish in the future. 

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U.S. Space Force 1st Lt. Alexander Knoedler, 4th Space Operations Squadron satellite engineer, poses for a photo as the focus of the Down to Earth feature at Schriever Space Force Base, Colorado, April 24, 2024. Knoedler helps maintain the U.S. as a leading force in outer space by ensuring 4 SOPS equipment is resilient to counter-space threats. (U.S. Space Force photo by Dalton Prejeant)