During President Donald J. Trump’s Presidency, he created the U.S. Space Force on Dec. 19, 2019, as the sixth branch of the U.S. military.
Similar to the U.S. Air Force, the Space Force was organized under the Department of the Air Force Code (AFSC), and the new branch functions in a way similar to the way that the U.S. Marine Corps functions since it was organized under the U.S. Department of Navy.
The Space Force has not replaced NASA, rather the newest branch of the U.S. armed force has been tasked with supporting and maintaining satellites for GPS missile warning and nuclear command and control, relieving the Air Force from performing the task.
In general, Space Force, the first new branch of the military to be formed in 73 years, functions to basically protect U.S. interests in space from potential adversaries while NASA retains its mission of space exploration.
The Space Force’s logo is similar to “Star Trek,” and its new uniform designs appear to be patterned after those the characters wear in “Battlestar Galactica.”
The name for Space Force’s members echoes the name given to the characters in “Guardians of the Galaxy.”
The Space Force ranks include three levels that are similar to the Air Force: Specialist (E1-E4), Non-Commissioned Officers (E-5 and E-6), and Senior Non-Commissioned Officers (E-7 – E-9). Depending upon rank, the yearly pay range is $37,111 and $95,376.
To join the Space Force as a military member, those in the Air Force who have passed Basic Training and are pursuing a career in the Air Force are eligible to request service in the Space Force.
Also, admittance via transfers of active-duty officers and enlisted personnel (Colonels and below) from other Uniformed Services are eligible to request transfers.
Currently, only Army, Navy, and Marine Corps personnel are permitted to request transfers other than members of the Air Force.
While space exploration remains NASA’s domain, the Space Force with its 6,434 members and 77 spacecraft is overseen by the Secretary of the Air Force, a civilian, political appointee of the President who must be confirmed by the U.S. Senate and charged with protecting U.S. interests closer to home.
The Secretary of the Air Force reports to the Secretary of Defense headquartered in the Pentagon.
Ray Allen is the Editor of the Virginian Review. Mr Allen received his A.B. degree in English and physical education (1963) and M.A. degree in secondary education (1965) from Morehead State University before earning his M.F.A. degree in theatre arts from UCLA (1980) where he majored in writing for motion pictures and television. He retired as an educator in 2004, having taught 11 subjects and having coached five varsity sports during his 41-year-career that led him to teach and coach in Ky., Mich., Calif. and Va.