Fourteenth Air Force
Responsible for United States Air Force space operations, as distinct from the operational ballistic missiles is the Fourteenth Air Force, based at Vandenberg Air Force Base, California. As is typical of most numbered Air Forces, 14th Air Force has two headquarters to which it reports. For research & development, training, and readiness, it reports to the Air Force Space Command. For direct support of operations, including satellite operations and space warning, it reports to the United States Strategic Command. While it was once colocated with the Twentieth Air Force, which is responsible for operational intercontinental ballistic missiles, 20th AF headquarters has moved to the largest hardened missile field, F.E. Warren Air Force Base.
- 30th Space Wing at Vandenberg Air Force Base, California. Vandenberg is the U.S. Western (space) test range, complementing the Eastern Test Range. Western launches are preferable for satellites that will be in high-latitude satellite orbits.
- 45th Space Wing at Patrick Air Force Base, Florida. This Wing runs military launches from the Eastern Test Range at Cape Canaveral, FL, (i.e., Kennedy Space Center) complementing Vandenberg for launches in lower latitudes.
- 21st Space Wing, Peterson Air Force Base, Colorado, responsible for a worldwide radar, electro-optical imagery and electro-optical MASINT network for space and missile launch tracking, starting with the Ballistic Missile Early Warning System (BMEWS) and the original AN/FPS-50 radars, AN/FPS-115 PAVE PAWS radars with a principal mission of warning against submarine-launched ballistic missiles and a secondary space surveillance role. It also operates the AN/FPQ-16, originally the Perimeter Attack Radar Characterization System for the cancelled Safeguard ballistic missile defense, with a current space surveillance mission.
- 50th Space Wing at Schriever Air Force Base, Colorado, principally responsible for Global Positioning System, communications, and Defense Support Program (DSP) and successor space-based staring infrared MASINT systems that detect the heat of a missile launch.
- 460th Space Wing at Buckley Air Force Base, Colorado, which manages the downlink for a number of National Reconnaissance Office reconnaissance satellites, as well as working with DSP.