Hawaii National Guard to Get Space Control Squadron

The Hawaii Air National Guard will stand up a new space control squadron beginning next summer, one of the state’s senators announced this week.

The Air Force approved Barking Sands Pacific Missile Range Facility in Kauai as the preferred alternative for an Air National Guard Space Control Squadron. The unit will include 88 new Guard positions, including 29 full-time and 59-part-time positions, Sen. Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii) said in a statement.

The basing process should be complete in 2020, with the squadron reaching initial operational capability in fiscal 2021, and full operating capability in fiscal 2022. The squadron will be tasked with monitoring US satellites “in support of the National Security Space mission,” according to the statement.

“While this new unit will help strengthen the Air Force’s space capabilities and advance our national security interests, it also means more federal funds for the state and more opportunities for local jobs,” Schatz said in the statement.

The squadron will be the latest new space control unit in the Air National Guard. In June, the Colorado Air National Guard stood up the 138th Space Control Squadron at Peterson AFB. That squadron’s mission is providing “global space electronic attack capabilities” for rapid, flexible, and versatile electronic warfare effects globally, according to a release. The Air National Guard also has the 114th Space Control Squadron at Patrick AFB, Fla.