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Periodista del EMAD

A delegation of the US Under-Secretariat of Defence for Space Policy visits the Torrejón Combined Air Operations Center (CAOC TJ)

Torrejón AF Base
June 10, 2022
  • The visit is part of the meetings of the US delegation with national and international organizations of interest for collaboration in aerospace defence

A commission of experts, headed by Heidi Robinson, Director of External Relations of the Under-Secretariat for Space Policy, Karen Pound, Head of the Space Policy Division of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and US Air Force Colonel Carlos Pérez Méndez, along with Spanish personnel under the command of Rear Admiral Chief of Satellite Systems and Cyber Defence of the General Directorate General for Armament and Equipment were welcomed at the CAOC by Lieutenant General Fernando De la Cruz, Commander of the Centre.

The bilateral meeting between technical staff from CAOC Torrejón and the North American Under-Secretariat of Defence for Space Policy takes place within the framework of meetings held by teh aforementioned delegation with their counterparts in NATO.

The work meeting had the objective of improving the CAOC-NATO-USAF integration in the space domain, seeking meeting points in relation to strategy, policy and doctrine with the aim of creating an architecture that ensures the use of these capabilities in the framework of the operations, missions and activities carried out at the multilateral level.

As a recent historical fact, on October 22, 2020, NATO Defence Ministers announced the creation of the Space Center at the Air Component Command (AIRCOM) in Ramstein. Its purpose would be to monitor space satellites, as well as the collection of data on possible threats in what is known as the 'fifth domain' of operations and which is added to the previous ones (land, sea, air and cyberspace). Since then, experts from the United States, United Kingdom, Holland, Germany and Spain have been joining the centre to strengthen this capacity within the framework of NATO.

Combined Air Operations Centre Torrejón

The main purpose of CAOC Torrejón, commanded by a Spanish Air Force Lieutenant General, is to plan, direct, coordinate, supervise, analyse and report on air defence operations in southern Europe following the directives of NATO's air component command with the assigned assets by NATO in peacetime.

The Spanish Armed Forces are making an important contribution to the mission conducted by this facility. Roughly 120 military personnel are assigned to the CAOC itself, as well as to the National Support Element (NSE) and the NATO Communications and Information Agency (NCIA).