FY24 Budget Funds Digital Training: US Space Force Chief

Foreign Affairs

Washington: Creating a digital training environment is a key priority for the US Space Force’s new chief officer as he focuses on ensuring the readiness of Guardians to face inevitable attacks on US space systems in future conflict. And Gen. Chance Saltzman made it clear that there “absolutely” are funds in the fiscal 2024 budget to pay for the new simulators and “digital twins” required.

“I can’t give you the specific numbers yet, but we are investing in developing what I’m loosely calling an ‘operational test and training infrastructure,’” he told reporters at a Pentagon roundtable. “That’s kind of an umbrella concept, and it includes simulators, it includes ranges, it includes the testing equipment, it includes the digital engineering efforts.”

Saltzman has focused on readiness as part of his recently issued “lines of effort” for making the Space Force a success. In a series of one-page “Commander’s Notes” published January 18, he said his top priority is the need to field “combat ready forces” comprising not just weapon systems, but also the personnel to operate them and the logistics tail needed to sustain them.

Saltzman explained that having the resources for training is important to meeting those readiness goals. To that end, he said the Space Force is working to “tighten those linkages” between the operators who need the training and the acquisition community, led by Air Force Assistant Secretary for Space Acquisition and Integration Frank Calvelli, in order to ensure that operational requirements can be met.