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Posted 7/10/2015 Printable Fact Sheet
16th SPCS
16th Space Control Squadron
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The 16th Space Control Squadron (16th SPCS) is Air Force Space Command's only defensive space control unit and employs the Standardized Process for Interference Recognition and Interference Targeting (SPIRIT) system, Rapid Attack, Identification, Detection, and Reporting System (RAIDRS) - Deployable Ground Segment Zero (RDGS-0) and Bounty Hunter systems. The unit is responsible for operating defensive space control capabilities to rapidly achieve flexible and versatile space superiority in support of theater campaigns and USSTRATCOM's Space Superiority mission. The 16th SPCS, based at Peterson Air Force Base, Colorado, is assigned to the 21st Operations Group, 21st Space Wing. It draws Total Force manpower support from its Reserve Associate Unit, the 380th Space Control Squadron.

The 16th SPCS systems provide a near global ability to detect, characterize, geolocate and report sources of radio frequency interference on U.S. military and commercial satellites in direct support of combatant commanders.

SPIRIT is the only near-global UHF EMI detection system.  The RAIDRS prototype, the Satellite Interference Response System (SIRS), was initially deployed to USCENTCOM in July 2005 for a 120-day proof of concept. Out of this initial success, SIRS was re-designated as RDGS-0 and has been continually deployed in theater.  In 2011, the Bounty Hunter system was delivered to USCENTCOM for added capability and the two comprise Operation SILENT SENTRY.  Airmen from the 16/380 SPCS provide the preponderance of the required manpower for this mission.

The 16th SPCS was activated in November 1966 as the 16th Surveillance Squadron, Shemya AFS, Alaska, under Air Defense Command. The unit's mission was to operate the Cobra Dane long-range early warning radar system to track Soviet missile launches. It was assigned to the 73rd Aerospace Surveillance Wing in January 1967 and then the 14th Aerospace Force in April 1971. The unit was reassigned in 1983 to the 1st Space Wing under the newly established Air Force Space Command. In 1991, it was assigned to the 73rd Space Surveillance Group and re-designated as the 16th Space Surveillance Squadron. The unit was inactivated in 1993. Fourteen years later, in May 2007, the unit was reactivated as the 16th Space Control Squadron to operate AFSPC defensive space control systems.

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