Published July 24, 2020
Space Delta 8 (DEL 8), a component of the U.S. Space Force, was established and activated July 24, 2020.
Delta 8 consists of three active duty squadrons headquartered at Schriever Air Force Base, Colorado: 2nd and 4th Space Operations Squadrons and 50th Operations Support Squadron.
Delta 8 is mission-focused on Position, Navigation, and Timing (PNT) and Satellite Communications (SATCOM), providing the only global utility for PNT signals to both warfighters and civilian users as well as the focal point for U.S. protected and assured Military Satellite Communications (MILSATCOM) to the President, Secretary of Defense, national decision makers, theater commanders, and strategic and tactical forces worldwide. The Delta commander executes command and control of the nation’s MILSATCOM and Global Positioning System (GPS) constellations, develops and trains space warfighters, and delivers capabilities through 24/7 crew operations.
The 2nd Space Operations Squadron provides precise, three-dimensional position, velocity and timing information to military and civilian users around the globe by operating Navstar GPS, the military's largest, and the world's most widely-used, satellite constellation. The squadron executes continuous command and control of the 35-satellite GPS constellation, and delivers capability through the Master Control Station at Schriever AFB and a worldwide network of dedicated ground antennas and monitoring stations. The GPS Warfighter Collaboration Cell is part of the 24/7 operations crew and is the focal point for near real-time support to warfighters, combatant commands and, through the U.S. Coast Guard Navigation Center, 4+ billion global civilian users, delivering 120,000+ products a year.
The 4th Space Operations Squadron is responsible for day-to-day command and control, communications payload management and ground segment maintenance for the USSF's protected MILSATCOM systems, as well as providing wideband long-haul communications capability for joint warfighters deployed around the globe. The squadron controls Milstar and Advanced Extremely High Frequency satellites in a protected constellation and Defense Satellite Communication System and Wideband Global SATCOM system satellites in a wideband constellation. These constellations are operated primarily by fixed Constellation Control Stations (CCSs) located on Schriever and Vandenberg AFBs with additional mobile CCSs prepared for emergency, contingency or endurance missions. The 4th SOPS provides warfighters global, secure, survivable, strategic, and tactical communications during peacetime and throughout the full spectrum of conflict, delivering a 10-fold increase to worldwide communications capabilities.
The 50th Operations Support Squadron is responsible for implementing operations and training policy for Delta 8, more than 200 combat mission ready operators and four unique DOD satellite systems. They are also responsible for processing the daily Space Duty Order and maintaining crew force management records. The squadron implements the space weapons and tactics program and integrates new satellite and ground control programs into current operations. The 50th OSS manages all aspects of training and equipping Delta members for deployments and the training program for most assigned career fields.
The Army Air Forces' 50th Pursuit Group stood up Jan. 15, 1941, and inactivated at La Junta Army Airfield, Colorado, Nov. 7, 1945, after earning a distinguished flying record over forward bases in Europe during World War II. The group activated in the Air Force Reserve on
June 1, 1949 as a component of the 50th Fighter Wing. It re-designated 50th Fighter-Interceptor Group on March 1, 1950 before inactivating on June 2, 1951. Re-designated 50th Fighter-Bomber Group, the unit again activated as a component of the 50th Fighter-Bomber Wing at Clovis AFB, New Mexico, to equip and train preparatory to reassignment to Hahn Air Base, Germany. The group inactivated on Dec. 8, 1957 as part of an Air Force reorganization of combat wings. The 50th Operations Group stood up at Falcon AFB (later changed to Schriever AFB) Jan. 30, 1992, the same day as the 50th Space Wing. When the 50th OG activated, its crews – formerly the crews of the 2nd SW – monitored satellites during launch operations, maneuvered them into proper orbits and maintained their health in space. With the signing of the National Defense Authorization Act, the 50th OG was realigned from Air Force Space Command to the U.S. Space Force on Dec. 20, 2019. A portion of the 50th OG was re-designated Delta 8 on July 24, 2020.
(Current as of July 2020)