June 2019 – AF Space Situational Awareness

Air Force Space Situational Awareness

JUNE 19-23, 2017


Design Problem

AFCyberWorx was tasked to gather a team of government and industry partners to conduct a design sprint with a goal to lay out a fast, viable path forward for the AF to enable better experimentation and unity of efforts toward the future.  The team identified ways to better use available SSA data in operations to improve situational awareness of satellite movements and threats to U.S. military satellites.

"How might the USAF best use commercial, academic, and foreign data to improve space situational awareness (SSA) for operational advantage?"


CyberWorx brought together 24 participants from numerous Air Force units, academia, and industry partners to rethink how the Air Force might best use commercial, academic, and foreign SSA data to improve space outcomes.

The teams identified the following themes that must be addressed in order to adequately rationalize the incorporation of non-traditional SSA data sources:

  • Transition to Commercial/NGO for Accessibility and Integrity
  • Centralize SSA for Usability
  • Authorize a DevOps model for Flexibility

These themes formed the foundation of an ecosphere capable of providing greater data fidelity, standardized formats, and agile operations

Proposed Solutions:

Big Innovative Non-Governmental Organizations (BINGOs): BINGOs should establish a blanket IDIQ-like contract with SSA competitors to allow industry to provide SSA data to a BINGO, which the government can then access or purchase.

Relinquish Conjunction Assessments and Safety of Flight: First step is to establish a date when the US government will relinquish responsibility and get out of the business of providing this conjunction assessment/safety of flight information.

Cost Model: Cost model for data acquisition and how the government might compensate a BINGO for data access

Opening the Aperture through Policy Review: A complete review of policy governing observing and reporting of RSOs must be conducted in order to enhance SSA operations.

Data Access and Agility: Defined initial interfaces for the acceptable transfer of information from BINGOs in order to facilitate the data integration.

Data Lake: Supports the collection and consolidation of all source data, at all classification levels.

DevOps Model: A unified team that operates under a construct where the team builds it, maintains it, upgrades it, operates it, etc.