Official JTAGS transfer ceremony takes place at Peterson Space Force Base 

  • Published
  • By Abigail Behan
  • Space Operations Command

The official transfer ceremony of the U.S. Army’s Joint Tactical Ground Station missile warning systems to the U.S. Space Force took place at Peterson Space Force Base, Colo., June 7.    

U.S. Army Lt. Gen. Sean A. Gainey, commander of Space and Missile Defense Command, and U.S. Space Force Lt. Gen. David N. Miller, Jr., commander of Space Operations Command, presided over the official ceremony.    

“The United States Army has ensured the success and excellence of the JTAGS mission, providing the real time missile warning infrared tracking capability forward in the theater and that's what the commitment was,” said Miller. “That's the reason we stood up. Broadbase capability, providing direct reporting to the combat forces that were forward deployed. It is a history of excellence. And they have stood the watch without fail, without a problem, for nearly three decades.”   

While the mission transfer took place in Oct. 2023, the U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command continued their support to U.S. Space Force’s Space Operations Command during the transfer of JTAGS functions, resources, and capabilities until April 2024. The transfer included the move of approximately 90 billets from SMDC to SpOC.   

“As an Air Defense Officer, with vast experience of dealing with early warning systems, JTAGS has always been a symbol of excellence and professionalism throughout my career. Over my career. I had plenty of opportunities to visit our JTAGS formations in Central Command, Indo-Pacific Command and European Command,” said Gainey. “One of the things I always walked away with, whenever I visited one of those formations was the professionalism and the technical expertise of that organization and pride those soldiers had in the mission that they were providing across the Army and the joint force.”  

In support of regional combatant commanders, JTAGS processes satellite data and communicates ballistic missile warning to warfighters across a variety of theater communication systems. There are JTAGS currently located at Naval Air Station Sigonella, Italy; Osan Air Base, Republic of Korea; Misawa Air Base, Japan; and Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar.    

The transfer of these capabilities allows for alignment of all Department of Defense missile warning systems to be assembled under a single military service branch.   

This mission transfer from the Army to the Space Force follows the Army Satellite Communications transfer August 2022, which consolidated all military SATCOM capabilities under one service for the first time ever.    

“The partnership that was there as a joint team in the past, now we continue as a service team. I want to assure our Army teammates that there will be no change in the commitment that we have made,” said Miller. “It is a covenant that we have to provide a space competence to the joint force. We take that very seriously.”   

The 5th SWS, under Space Delta 4, was activated Oct. 13, 2023 and assumed responsibility for JTAGS operations. Its mission is to uphold JTAGS capabilities which have been an essential piece of the missile warning framework and component for United States European Command, United States Central Command, and the United States Indo-Pacific Command.   

Delta 4, headquartered at Buckley SFB, provides tipping and cueing to missile defense forces, battlespace awareness to combatant commanders and technical intelligence for further analysis. Delta 4 also manages weapon system architectures and ensures operations are intelligence-led, cyber-resilient and driven by innovation.  

SpOC generates and presents combat-ready intelligence, cyber, space and combat support forces.