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Pentagon Unveils Updated Space Policy Document

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The Department of Defense has issued an updated directive that acknowledges space “as a priority domain of national military power” and implements several “tenets of responsible behavior in space” that Lloyd Austin, secretary of DOD and a 2022 Wash100 Award winner, outlined in a July 2021 memo, SpaceNews reported Tuesday.

The new space policy document calls for DOD to strengthen the security, safety, accessibility and sustainability of the space domain; defend and protect the use of space for U.S. national security, economy and allies; and improve partnership with the Intelligence Community to build up the unity of effort and enhance the effectiveness of space operations.

The directive highlights the need to transform the DOD space enterprise to meet the rapid changes in the strategic environment by maturing the U.S. Space Force’s capability and capacity, enabling U.S. Space Command to carry out operations in space and improving DOD’s space architecture planning, requirements and make acquisition initiatives into a “streamlined, agile process” to expedite the delivery of space capabilities.

The policy also outlines the space-related duties and responsibilities of several DOD officials, including the assistant secretary of defense for space policy, director of the Defense Technology Security Administration and defense undersecretaries for acquisition and sustainment and research and engineering.

Deputy DOD Secretary Kathleen Hicks, a 2022 Wash100 Award recipient, signed the space policy document on Aug. 30.