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DEL 3 updates focus and priorities


Space Delta 3 – Space Electromagnetic Warfare, Space Operations Command, prepares combat-ready professionals to integrate, synchronize and execute fire missions for U.S., allied and coalition forces. DEL 3’s mission is to execute premiere Space Electromagnetic Warfare through sustainable operations to dominate the space domain.


Space Delta 3 – Space Electromagnetic Warfare, Space Operations Command, prepares combat-ready professionals to integrate, synchronize and execute fire missions for U.S., allied and coalition forces.

The DEL 3 mission is influenced by the ever-changing threat environment. Adversary ground forces are more focused on leveraging space-enabled capabilities to maximize their effectiveness in all domains. With space, the adversary lethality goes much further, changing the way we fight and defend against them.

“Our competitors know that the fastest, cheapest and most non-destructive way to attack space-based systems is in the electromagnetic spectrum,” said U.S. Space Force Lt. Col. Anthony Surman, 114th Space Control Squadron operations officer.

The Del 3, 3rd Combat Training Squadron focuses on building warriors. First by developing spectrally aware, joint-minded SEW professionals in training, and then by sharpening their edge through advanced training opportunities.

The four priorities guiding Guardians and Airmen of DEL 3 are developing Electromagnetic Warfare professionals; strengthening the SEW enterprise; improving overall resiliency; and fostering relationships with industry, the local community and base mission partners.

Space Delta 3 includes three operational units: the 4th Space Control Squadron, 5th SPCS and the 16th SPCS, which will all transition to Electromagnetic Warfare Squadrons pending Department of the Air Force approval.

The 4th SPCS trains, equips and mobilizes to employ SEW capabilities in order to support full-spectrum national security objectives, while the 5th SPCS provides combat-ready EW forces to the U.S. Space Command commander in order to protect and defend U.S. and allied global operations. The 16th SPCS operates the Bounty Hunter 2.0 system which maintains constant over-watch of critical satellite communication by monitoring, detecting, characterizing and geolocating sources of interferences.

Over the past 20 years, DEL 3 maintained a persistent overseas presence in several combatant commands. Some of these locations include Iraq, Afghanistan, Qatar, Jordan, Japan and Niger.

Part of DEL 3’s strength also comes from Total Force partnerships with four existing National Guard units: the 114th SPCS-Florida, 138th SPCS-Colorado, 216th SPCS-California, and 293rd SPCS-Hawaii, and Reserve unit, 380th SPCS-Colorado. In 2021, DEL 3 will add a defensive SEW unit in Guam and an offensive SEW unit through the standup of a Reserve Classic Associate Unit to the 4th SPCS.

DEL 3 remains a key aspect of the operational kill chain and a critical component of the U.S. space arsenal. The kill chain concept is the structure of an attack consisting of find, fix, target, track, engage the target, and assess the attack.

DEL 3 regularly forward deploys to support SEW fire missions across multiple combatant commands, adding electromagnetic attack, electromagnetic protection and electromagnetic support capabilities to the arsenal and closing the adversary kill chain.

 “Just as we would not go into war without establishing air superiority, the U.S. will no longer go to war without electromagnetic spectrum superiority,”  said U.S. Space Force Col. Christopher Fernengel, DEL 3 commander. “DEL 3 promotes peace through strength which, in turn, enables deterrence. The team’s contribution is waking up each day with the goal of making their systems, enterprise and their strongest weapons, Space Delta 3 warriors, as lethal as possible. They ‘Step into the Arena’ every day where they compete for dominance of the electromagnetic spectrum.”

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