The AFSPC SMP is the command’s capstone planning document.

This Air Force Space Command (AFSPC) Strategic Master Plan (SMP) documents a 25-year path to the future for our command. It starts by describing a Vision of the possibilities -- “A globally integrated aerospace force providing continuous deterrence and prompt engagement for America and its allies ... through control and exploitation of space and information.” This is a Vision that leads to an Aerospace Force able to change the course of events in hours, minutes and even seconds. It makes accomplishing the Chairman’s goal of Full Spectrum Dominance achievable within acceptable costs.

Our Vision was built with over 85 years of insight to guide us. The seeds were laid by early airpower theorists and proponents who sensed the potential of “Global reach, global power” well before technology could make it possible. The Vision was nurtured by early space pioneers, who looked beyond the novelty of space exploration to the potential for war winning capabilities. Finally, our Vision grew and matured in the post-Desert Storm environment as the feasibility of aerospace dominance of the battlespace became reality. Our SMP attempts to close the loop between aerospace theory and the technological, cultural and organizational advances required to make our Vision a reality.

After defining our Vision, the SMP then provides a long range plan for reaching our Vision. This plan revolves around a strategy that considers the reality of our strategic defense environment -- flat budgets and heavy operations tempo. It also takes into account technology maturation timelines and political limitations on the military uses of space. With all of these limitations factored in, the strategy to implement our plan is feasible, but requires hard decisions. We provide guidance on where budgetary and policy decisions and trade-offs need to be made.

Figure ES–1 visually depicts some of the key capabilities we will provide by the end of the 25-year planning period. Our future AFSPC capabilities will enable a fully integrated Aerospace Force to rapidly engage military forces worldwide. Our space forces will move beyond being primarily force multipliers to also being direct force providers. Global real-time, situational awareness will be provided to our combatant commanders through space-based Navigation, Satellite Communications (SATCOM), Environmental Monitoring (EM), Surveillance and Threat Warning (S&TW), Command and Control (C2), and Information Operations (IO) systems. Robust and responsive spacelift and improved satellite operations capabilities will provide on-demand space transportation and on-demand space asset operations ensuring our ability to access and operate in space. Full spectrum dominance in the space medium will be achieved through total space situational awareness, protection of friendly space assets, prevention of unauthorized use of those assets, negation of adversarial use of space and a fully-capable National Missile Defense (NMD). Our ICBMs will continue to provide a credible strategic deterrence, while advanced, conventional weapons operating in or through space will provide our National Command Authorities (NCA) with formidable and flexible options for prompt, global, conventional strike.

Further, the appropriate infrastructure, basing, sustainment and training will support our role in the integrated Aerospace Force. Interoperable, bandwidth-on-demand, secure communications will link US forces globally. Full combat and contingency engineering will be ready to support the Expeditionary Air Force. AFSPC systems will be sustained using Air Force-standard logistics. All airmen will be trained as force protectors. Our forces will be optimized with the proper mix of active duty, reserve component, National Guard, civil service and contractors. All Aerospace Forces will be fully aerospace-trained and educated. Training and exercises will be integrated, using a global synthetic battlespace. Finally, regular and deployed medical care will ensure a healthy force, operating at peak performance.

Plan Purpose

The AFSPC SMP is the capstone blueprint that ties the space planning pieces together for achieving an Aerospace Force. This plan provides a cost-constrained, technologically feasible roadmap, integrated across the AFSPC mission areas. It provides programming and budgeting guidance for use by the Air Staff, AFSPC, Air Force Materiel Command Product Centers and the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) to keep us on the path for achieving a fully integrated Aerospace Force.

Relationship to Other
Developments and Initiatives

Our Vision has its roots in a number of other Visions. As an Air Force major command, we can trace the lineage of this Vision directly from the Chairman’s Joint Vision 2010 and the Air Force Vision of Global Engagement. These documents provide the baseline for where Joint Forces and the USAF are headed. Since AFSPC is also a force provider for a number of unified commands, our Vision was also carefully crafted to support the United States Space Command (USSPACECOM) Vision 2020, North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) Vision 2010 and the United States Strategic Command (USSTRATCOM) Vision. Each of these Visions influenced our building of the SMP.

In addition, several other evolving developments and planning initiatives, listed in Figure ES-2, are also underway to define how the Air Force of the future will be organized and based, what the missions will be and how those missions will be performed in relation to other agencies and the commercial sector. A summary of each of these developments and initiatives is presented in Appendix B. Emerging results of these developments and initiatives have already influenced our efforts and will continue to guide our planning in the future.

Figure ES-2: Evolving developments and initiatives will impact future AFSPC planning

Strategy to Achieve Our Vision

To build our strategy for reaching our Vision, we had to consider the dictates of the world in which we live. Our strategy was tailored to consider external factors such as expected warfighting needs, budget realities, technology availability, the expanding commercial space market, and existing treaties and policies limiting the full exploitation of space. As shown in Figure ES-3, our SMP implements a time-phased strategy divided into three periods: near-term (2000-2007), mid-term (2008-2013) and far-term (2014-2025). For all three periods, five areas of emphasis will persist: (1) Maintaining a secure and effective strategic deterrence, (2) Leveraging partnerships with other Department of Defense (DoD), civil and commercial agencies to help us afford the development and fielding of needed capabilities, (3) Reducing the cost of doing business, (4) Protecting and sustaining our forces and (5) Supporting our installations and people.

Our plan emphasizes four areas in the near-term: (1) improving battlespace situational awareness for our theater CINCs (Commander(s)-in-Chief), (2) integrating air and space forces into an Aerospace Force, (3) evolving space superiority and (4) evolving information superiority. Our utility as the premier force enhancer will increase as we emphasize extending the battlespace situational awareness edge presently enjoyed by the joint force commander. Aerospace integration will require significant effort as we work through tough issues such as organizational changes and force structure trade-offs. We will also increase our focus on our ability to gain space and information superiority.

As we progress into the mid-term, we will concentrate on four areas: (1) providing the warfighting forces with exceptional battlespace management; (2) evolving our initial global, conventional strike capabilities; (3) gaining space superiority and (4) gaining information superiority. To improve battlespace management, we will emphasize not only providing the space-based information and information flow required for situational awareness, but also the capability to blend aerospace IO systems into a fused architecture. The result is the superior-knowledge systems necessary to shape the future battlespace. In addition, our dependence on space systems and the information they provide, combined with the expanded accessibility of space services to anyone, will prod us to expand our capabilities to gain and maintain space and information superiority.

Finally, in the far-term, our focus shifts to: (1) completing our efforts to provide warfighting forces with global, real-time situational awareness; (2) developing a prompt, global, conventional strike capability; (3) maintaining space superiority; and (4) maintaining information superiority. It is in the far-term that AFSPC is able to fully exploit the potential of the region of space. Theater CINCs will finally be able to count on global, real-time information flow every day, all day, in all types of weather. With the initial work done in the mid-term, we will maintain and improve our space superiority and provide the opportunity to deploy global, precision-strike systems able to inflict tailored effects against targets from and through space. We will also develop a robust spectrum of capabilities to gain, exploit, defend and attack information and information systems.

Figure ES-3: Our implementation strategy provides phased emphasis for deployment

Integrated Phased

Implementation Plan

We created an Integrated Phased Implementation Plan to implement our strategy. This plan was developed after assessing the expected environment and deriving anticipated operational tasks for the next 25 years. This assessment resulted in a list of Needs that cover not only today’s warfighting requirements, but leverages the future technological advances necessary to meet our Vision. Finally, an assessment of potential capabilities to satisfy those Needs over time, evaluated within a fiscally-constrained, technically-achievable trade-space led to an integrated modernization roadmap.

Chapter 6 presents this integrated, time-phased, fiscally-constrained implementation plan for achieving our Vision. It graphically depicts and describes the warfighting capabilities projected by new space and missile systems by the end of the near-, mid- and far-terms, summarizes the major Mission Support initiatives required to provide the 21st century aerospace warrior and required infrastructure; and provides the projected rolled-up costs of implementing the plan. Finally, supporting roadmaps are provided for requirements and concept of operations (CONOPS) documentation, and policy and treaty actions.

Despite efforts to reduce the cost of doing business within the space and missile communities, these savings alone will be insufficient to successfully transition to a fully integrated Aerospace Force. “Space” Total Obligation Authority (TOA) needs to be increased. Our plan assumes AFSPC TOA will increase from about 12% of the USAF TOA in FY06 to approximately 20% midway through the 25-year period. However, this is strictly dependent upon Air Force senior level decisions.

Integrated Modernization Roadmap

Figure ES–4 shows our 25-year, cost-constrained, technologically-feasible modernization roadmap integrated across all the AFSPC mission areas. As shown in the legend, shadings and colors differentiate between systems that are operational or in development and those that are currently funded or planned. Key milestone dates are highlighted by diamonds. For example, the S&TW portion of the integrated roadmap shows that the development of the Space-Based Infrared System (SBIRS) High program is currently funded, with the first launch scheduled for year 2005, and that full operational capability (FOC) is planned for year 2009. The roadmap entry for the Low Earth Orbit Hyperspectral Target Characterization System shows an example of a planned program with development scheduled to begin in year 2010 resulting in an FOC around year 2018. Finally, The Space Support section of the roadmap shows non-materiel solutions (NMS). The first example under Launch Operations, NMS 1, represents a study that should be conducted to evaluate greater exploitation of commercial space opportunities. The results of this study could impact the Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle (EELV) and Space Operations Vehicle (SOV) development and implementation timelines.

Figure ES-4: Our 25-year modernization roadmap is integrated across the mission areas

Mission Support Roadmap

To ensure effective operations as new space missions emerge and current space and missile missions evolve, we will place ever-increasing emphasis on planning for all Mission Support areas that cut across our four mission areas. Figure ES-5 presents our fiscally-constrained Mission Support Roadmap which depicts the affordable upgrades and changes to basic support infrastructure we have identified to address the Mission Support Needs summarized in Chapter 4. Many of the programs shown on the roadmap are currently ongoing. Our plan calls for increased funding in these areas to satisfy the needs and evolve toward our Vision end state. Although the Medical initiatives depicted are separately funded by the DoD Defense Health Program, they are included here to highlight the importance of these initiatives to AFSPC.

Figure ES-5: Our Mission Support Roadmap identifies upgrades and
changes to basic support infrastructure

Cost Roll-Up

Figure ES–6 displays a roll-up of the total cost of the integrated plan presented above. Total investments in each mission area are shown. Costs include the total life cycle costs of new investments as well as the operations and maintenance costs of existing systems and infrastructure. The “Assumed Space TOA” line reflects our assumption that AFSPC TOA increases from approximately $8B in 2006 (12% of the USAF TOA) to about $14B midway through the 25-year period. This funding profile was used as the constraint for our Integrated Phased Implementation Plan. As indicated in the figure, this plan assumes Mission Support funding will grow from its current level of approximately $1B annually to just over $3B by year 2025. This growth is needed to support the expanded mission area capabilities depicted in the modernization roadmap.

Figure ES-6: AFSPC’s plan is costly but provides capabilities essential to 21st century warfighting

Our Assessment

Chapter 7 provides a comprehensive assessment of the Integrated Phased Implementation Plan relative to the AFSPC Vision; the mission area Needs for achieving the AFSPC Vision; the Integrated Priority Lists from the Commanders-in-Chief of USSPACECOM, NORAD and USSTRATCOM; and the USSPACECOM Long Range Plan Operational Concepts.

The results of our assessment against AFSPC Needs are shown in the “stoplight” charts in Figures ES–7 through ES–11 that depict the level or degree of satisfaction of the Needs. Developed during the two-year Integrated Planning Process, the Needs were prioritized for the near-, mid- and far-term periods. (See Chapter 4 for the prioritized lists.) The unfulfilled Needs represent a level of operational risk. For example, Figure ES-7 shows two Force Enhancement Needs that remain unsatisfied at the end of the planning horizon.

Our assessment against the USSPACECOM Long Range Plan Operational Concepts is presented in Figure ES-12. The figure depicts how well our plan supports those portions of USSPACECOM Operational Concepts allocated to AFSPC.

Figure ES-7: Assessment against Force Enhancement Needs

Figure ES-8: Assessment against Space Support Needs

Figure ES-9: Assessment against Space Control Needs

Figure ES-10: Assessment against Force Applications Needs

Figure ES-11: Assessment against Mission Support Needs

Figure ES-12: Assessment against USSPACECOM Long Range Plan

Implementation Challenges

Our assessment indicates that, if our strategies are  followed, we will be on the right path for achieving our Vision. However, achievement of the desired end state will not be easy; there are many challenges that lie ahead.

Full evolution to a true Aerospace Force requires an open-mindedness with both air and space advocates supporting the effort. The objective is effects-based targeting in response to theater CINC’s courses of action and intent regardless of the platform or medium. Education and training are crucial components needed to change the culture, and eventually, the nature of the Air Force. Likewise, our Vision is only possible if organizations work together towards a unified goal. Key partnerships with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, the National Reconnaissance Office, Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, Air Reserve Component (ARC), industry, other Services and applicable international agencies must either be established or maintained.

Funding is the biggest challenge. Although budgets are tight, the benefits of expanding the space budget are essential to 21st century warfighting. The emphasis should be on all services performing trade-offs to determine the best mix of ground, air, sea and space forces. Trade-off results should then be used to evaluate budget decisions from an integrated capabilities perspective rather than traditional “fenced” perspectives. The focus must be on finding the most cost-effective force mix.

Development of the capabilities needed for the mid- and far-terms will be paced by technology development. The Air Force, however, will not be able to develop all the needed technologies. We can get “more bang for the buck” by heavily tapping into civil and commercial research and development and the civilian competencies of our ARC members.

Finally, should the NCA elect to fully develop and exploit space control, changes to certain treaties and national policies may be necessary.


Our Vision is achievable but requires implementation of this aggressive plan. The AFSPC SMP sets a fiscally-reasonable and technologically-doable course yet will warrant tough decisions. The end result though, is a fully integrated Aerospace Force that is persuasive in peace, decisive in war and preeminent in any form of conflict.


For copies of this document, Website access, or more information on the AFSPC Integrated Planning Process contact:


150 Vandenberg Street, Suite 1105

Peterson AFB, CO 80914-4610


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e-mail:       afspc.xpx@peterson.af.mil

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Main    Table Of Contents   

Chapter 1    Chapter 2    Chapter 3     Chapter 4    Chapter 5    Chapter 6     Chapter 7    Chapter 8    Chapter 9

Appendix A    Appendix B    Appendix C     Appendix D    Appendix E    Appendix F