10th SWS in constant support of 21st SW
By Robb Lingley, 21st Space Wing
/ Published February 13, 2018
CAVALIER AIR FORCE STATION, N.D. --
The 21st Space Wing’s 10th Space Warning Squadron monitors and tracks potential missile launches against North America with the GE AN/FPQ-16 Enhanced Perimeter Acquisition Radar Attack Characterization System radar at Cavalier Air Force Station, North Dakota.
A geographically separated unit of the 21st SW, the 10th SWS was recently visited by Col. Todd Moore, 21st SW commander, along with Chief Master Sgt. Mark Bronson, 21st SW command chief, and other members of the 21st SW.
“The 10th SWS Spartans were proud to host Col. Moore and his team,” said Lt. Col Stephen Hobbs, 10th SWS commander in an email. “It’s rare for members of the 21th SW at Geographically Separated Units to personally interact with our Wing senior leaders. We very much enjoyed the chance to highlight the amazing things that our team is doing here and gain an understanding from the commander and command chief on where the Wing, space community and Air Force is going today and in the future.”
Cavalier AFS sits on 278 acres of land located 15 miles south of Canada in northeast North Dakota. The 10th SWS provides missile warning and space situational awareness to enable space combat operations from Cavalier AFS, North Dakota, the Air Force's only Continental United States isolated installation. In order to do this, 10th SWS operates the $1.6 Billion AN/FPQ-16 PARCS.
PARCS is the only radar of its kind and was originally called the Stanley R. Mickelson Safeguard Complex. It supported the U.S. Army’s Safeguard anti-ballistic missile program.
“10th SWS’s long term vision is to strive to be America's premier Space Warning Squadron and to continue to provide flawless missile warning and Space Situational Awareness in defense of our nation,” said Hobbs.
In 1977 the operation of PARCS was transferred from the Army to the Air Force and 10th SWS has been performing 24/7 strategic missile warning and SSA ever since.
“The 10th SWS team showed Col. Moore and Chief Master Sgt. Bronson our 278-acre installation, including our PARCS radar, transmitter room, and operations simulator where the team got to see a simulated missile warning site report,” said Hobbs. “We also showed them our 14 privatized houses, community activities center, gym, and defender alert facility/dormitory.”
“Col. Moore and his team also stayed in our dorms and got a great feeling for some of our Spartan accommodations,” Hobbs said.
While there Moore attended a company grade officer lunch while Bronson appeared at an enlisted mentoring lunch. They also attended a space mission force brief dinner at Hobb’s house.
“A unique aspect of life at Cavalier is there are very few local restaurants and none are close to the base,” said Hobbs. “Lt. Col. Mark Bieda, 10th SWS director of operations, executed a perfect sub-zero temperature burger burn while we watched from the warm confines of my house.”
10th SWS also enjoyed showcasing their installation to fellow 21st SW Knights and giving them a taste of life and operations at 10th SWS, especially since it was a toasty -10 degrees Fahrenheit each morning. We hope 21st SW Airmen now understand our Spartan living, with a Cavalier attitude motto, said Hobbs.