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The Space Development Agency (SDA) is called the Defense Department’s constructive disruptor for space acquisition, delivering space-based capabilities to the warfighter quickly.

  • Derek Tournear, director of the Space Development Agency at the Defense Department, said his organization uses the spiral development model, delivering “good enough” capabilities every two years, which is “profound” and can be used for most activities capitalizing on commercial investments.
  • Tournear said a Warfighter Council that meets every six months vets product requirements, and the SDA gets feedback from combatant commanders to ensure deliverables are “good enough,” nixing additional capabilities if necessary to adhere to the schedule.
  • The SDA is working to procure satellites to track hypersonic glide vehicles and ballistic missile threats by 2025 and communication satellites to improve tactical data link connectivity by 2024, said Tournear.
  • The agency is moving to the United States Space Force in fall of 2022, and Tournear said the Space Force and Congress have been very helpful with ensuring a smooth transition.

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