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Space Force comes to Alaska, Clear Air Force Station renamed Clear Space Force Station

Updated: Jun. 15, 2021 at 5:31 PM AKDT
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FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KTVF) - The Clear Air Force Station was established in 1961 as an early warning missile defense site. Since then it has operated with the goal of defending North America from missile threats. However, on Tuesday June 15, the station was renamed the Clear Space Force Station and made a part of the United States newest branch of the military, Space Force.

The station held a ceremony to unveil the new Space Force sign at Clear and officially rename the station. Members of the Space Force, Air Force, Alaska Air National Guard as well as community members from the nearby towns attended the ceremony.

While the name is new, Major Joseph Kilian, the director of operations for the 13th Space Warning Squadron, said that the mission mostly remains the same.

“The overall mission at Clear is to do missile warning. We also perform missile defense and space demand awareness utilizing the upgraded early warning radar here at Clear,” Kilian said.

He said that changing Clear to a Space Station makes sense, “We changed it because with the stand-up of the United States Space Force, and independent service, we align with that mission set of protecting the space domain.”

The station will continue to work on missile defense but Kilian said that having it in Space Force will also help the new service get it’s unique identity and culture.

The station also adds another branch of the military to Alaska and provides additional opportunities for the future.

“The potential, as the space domain expands, for other future mission sets that are solely on space to come out here to Clear where we have the room and the space to establish a foothold here to do space missions,” Killian said.

While the station is now under the control of Space Force, Killian said the support personnel at the station will remain either Air Force or Alaska Air National Guard. There are currently only around 10 Space Force members, called guardians stationed at Clear.

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