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2nd SOPS to build support books for Army training

2nd Space Operations Squadron

Three members of the 2nd Space Operations Squadron GPS Warfighter Collaboration Cell collaborated with USASMDC’s Army Space Training Integration last month to build training smart books for Army Brigade Combat Teams prior to deployment. The 2nd SOPS operates the largest Department of Defense spacecraft constellation via the Master Control Station and a worldwide network of monitor stations and ground antennas. (U.S. Air Force courtesy graphic)


The 2nd Space Operations Squadron exemplified the 50th Space Wing’s mission, “evolve space and cyberspace warfighting superiority through integrated and innovative operations” recently when three members of GPS Warfighter Collaboration Cell collaborated with USA Space and Missile Defense Command’s Army Space Training Integration to build training smart books for Army Brigade Combat Teams prior to deployment.

The members met with an FA-40 from USASMDC to build a smart book with standardized GWCC products to include spike charts, jamming plots, which will be provided to the Army’s three Combat Training Centers to be used in the preparation for deployment to combat zones.

“These products will provide a standardized model for the Army to integrate the GWCC into their initial training of troops headed to locations with potentially denied GPS environments,” said Lt. Col. Stephen Toth, 2nd Space Operations Squadron commander.

The training will teach up to 140,000 soldiers on an annual basis and represents the most significant effort to this point to integrate space and PNT knowledge and programs into USA training.

First Lt. Savanna Whitaker, 2nd SOPS GWCC deputy director, one of the lead mission analysts for the GWCC, formerly known as the GPS Operations Center, participated in the initial discussion for this collaboration.

“Our team met with the CTC Integration OIC with the Army Space Training Integration Branch, United States Army Space and Missile Defense Command to discuss the support we could provide as well as to determine the way forward to best meet their needs,” she said.

Whitaker explained the ASTI supports the training and readiness of Army Brigade Combat Teams in the PNT, GPS line of effort prior to real world deployments/contingency operations.

“The products we will be creating will be used to expose the BCTs to the products available from the GWCC so they can learn how to request, interpret and use these products in their future engagements,” she said. “The GWCC can provide a variety of products and tactics to support warfighters; however, many are not aware of what we can provide. By providing these products for use in training the BCTs, we hope to make more warfighters aware of the support we can provide and the avenues to request our support.”

Whitaker said it was a great experience to be on the team that gets to undertake the collaboration efforts.

“Not only do we get to work within the GWCC to make our support better and/or find new ways to adapt to meet the requestor’s needs, but we also get to learn more about the training of the BCTs and better understand the needs of those we are supporting,” she said. “We also are gaining invaluable experience working with other services and learning how to communicate effectively across a range of backgrounds.”

Although the mission continues to be successful, Whitaker said it did not come without its challenges.

“One of the challenges we’ve experienced is working in the joint environment,” she said. “The Army and the Air Force have different knowledge bases, so we’ve been working hard to ensure we are communicating effectively and providing the support they require.”

The 2nd SOPS will continue developing a relationship between 2nd SOPS GWCC and USASMDC to provide training and capability updates as they occur.

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