The rapid pace of rocket launches from the eastern range is more than just a commercial space boon.
It means a greater capacity to defend America’s space architecture against aggressive adversaries developing space weapons, said the commander of the 45th Space Wing at Patrick Air Force Base in Florida.
“It’s on the forefront of everyone’s mind, even our bosses,” Wing Commander Brig. Gen. Douglas Schiess told the Washington Examiner. “How can we keep this pace up, and how can we be even faster or [have] more launches?”
When Schiess first served at Cape Canaveral eight years ago, he saw just a dozen annual launches. In 2020, the Department of Defense’s eastern range is set to surpass 30 commercial and national security launches.
Even more launches are expected as the nation’s newest service, Space Force, stands up and needs to deploy additional assets into space.
Launch capacity has been enabled