Space Force declares IOC for Space Surveillance Telescope

By Michael Marrow / September 30, 2022 at 5:59 PM

The Space Surveillance Telescope that will be operated jointly by the Australian Defense Department and Space Force reached initial operational capability today, according to a press release from Space Operations Command.

SST will perform space domain awareness services by detecting and tracking objects in geosynchronous orbit, helping to avoid collisions and monitor other objects like asteroids.

Built by a Defense Research Projects Agency team at White Sands Missile Range, NM, the telescope was relocated to Australia in 2017 as part of a deal to expand coverage in the southern hemisphere and develop Australia’s space domain awareness capabilities.

The telescope is expected to reach full operational capability late next year, according to the release.

SST will add critical space domain awareness services at a time when officials are raising alarm over the steady increase in space launches, warning that a further lack of guardrails and international agreements will create an unmanageable number of objects in orbit.