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5 Wright-Patterson Air Force Base missions slated for transfer to Space Force

Aerial view of the National Museum of the United States Air Force at the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. (U.S. Air Force/Released)

Five Wright-Patterson units or missions are slated to be transferred to the new Space Force, U.S. Space Force public affairs has announced.

The units are: the 18th Intel Squadron, AFRL (Air Force Research Lab) Research Lab Mission Execution, Counter-Space Analysis Squadron, Space Analysis Squadron and the AFRL Sensors Directorate.

The new announcement does not entail any immediate addition or subtraction of jobs to or from Wright-Patterson, Ohio’s largest single-site employer with 30,000 military and civilian employees.

About 1,840 Air Force billets — or military jobs — will be transferred into the Space Force from across the 23 total units in Space Force’s announcement, which also touched on missions at several other military bases.

“This transfer plan does not include the physical movement of units or billets to a different geographic location, nor does it include moving any of the people assigned to units,” the Space Force statement said Wednesday. “The missions and billets will simply be transferred to the Space Force and remain in place to leverage the talent, infrastructure, and key capabilities at their current location.”

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Space Force’s goal is to have each of the 23 space missions formally transferred from the Air Force into the Space Force in the next three to six months “based on timing and conditions specific to each organization and mission.”

The chief of staff of the Air Force, Gen. David Goldfein, and the chief of space operations, Gen. John “Jay” Raymond, have been delegated the authority to execute the transfer when they jointly agree the necessary conditions have been met to affect a smooth transfer, the Space Force release said.

A statement from U.S. Rep. Mike Turner, R-Dayton, is greeting the news as a “substantial win” for Wright-Patterson.

Turner has expressed concern about protecting key Wright-Patt missions as Space Force grows.

A representative of Turner said that while no immediate new jobs have been announced for Wright-Patterson, identifying these missions with a new and growing military branch could be good news for the base long-term.

“As Space Force develops, it is necessary for its success that Wright-Patterson Air Force Base is involved in its mission,” Turner said in a release. “The Space Force’s announcement that it will transfer five units at Wright-Patt from the Air Force to the Space Force shows that the Pentagon understands the unique capabilities of Wright-Patt in regard to our national mission in space and intends to capitalize on that.

“I have continued to advocate to the Space Force leadership that Wright-Patt and NASIC (the National Air and Space Intelligence Center) have a lot to offer in terms of already developed capabilities and trained personnel that could assist in the Space Force’s mission,” Turner added. “I will continue to advocate for Wright-Patt’s capabilities in space as Space Force is stood up.”

 “The transfer of Wright-Patterson missions from the Air Force to the Space Force ensures that the base will have an early and important role in the new organization,” said Jeff Hoagland, president and chief executive of the Dayton Development Coalition. “As the Space Force develops and grows, Wright-Patterson will grow with it, evolving into a base that jointly serves both missions.”

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© 2020 the Dayton Daily News