The newest branch of the U.S. military, the Space Force, has selected 2,410 Air Force personnel in space-related specialties to join their ranks, starting on Sept. 1.
In a Thursday press release, the Space Force indicated Airmen in the Air Force’s Space Operations (13S) and Space Systems Operations (1C6) specialties had been selected for the transfer.
“This is an exciting and historic time for these space operators who will be some of the first members to join the Space Force,” said Lt. Gen. David “DT” Thompson, the vice commander of the U.S Space Force. “Each one of them has an important responsibility to contribute bold ideas to shape the Space Force into a 21st century service.”
Those selected personnel will receive notices on their MyPers military personnel accounts later in July to inform them that they are among the members selected to change military branches in September. Some members awaiting pending promotions or other administrative processes will be allowed to transfer at a later date.
The MyPers messages will explain the next steps for selected personnel. Those members will also have the option to apply for retraining into another career field, transition into the reserve components of the Air Force, or apply for separation or retirement, if eligible. Otherwise, those selected will remain in the Air Force until their transfer date and may be assigned duties to work with the Space Force until that time.
The move comes amid an effort to man the new military branch which received its initial funding in December of 2019. The Space Force is currently staffed by around 16,000 temporary Air Force and civilian personnel, Military.com reported. Around 6,000 of the temporary personnel picked to help stand up the new branch will be offered the chance for a permanent transfer by the end of the year.
The Space Force press release noted more than 8,500 active-duty Airmen from 13 eligible officer and enlisted career fields have also offered to transfer to the new service.
Many of the volunatry transfers have come Airmen whose military specialties are common of both the Air Force and the Space Force, including: intelligence (14N), cyberspace operations (17X), developmental engineer (62E), acquisition manager (63A), operations intelligence (1N0), geospatial intelligence (1N1), signals intelligence (1N2), fusion analyst (1N4), targeting analyst (1N8), cyberspace support (3D0), and client systems (3D1).
Members volunteering to change branches will undergo a transfer selection process that considers their space experience, credentials and performance to determine if they would be good for new personnel.
The Space Force indicated that following a transition period for selected organic space specialties, expected to last until 2022, the organic Air Force space specialties will be discontinued entirely. The Space Force will then proceed with control of the space specialties.
The Space Force indicated it is also considering transferring space specialties from the U.S. Army and U.S. Navy into the new branch, that transfer process will not occur until fiscal years 2022-23. The Space Force also indicated while provisions exist to allow Army and Navy transfers, the new branches recruitment focus is on Air force members.