Albuquerque Journal (Albuquerque, NM)

3 Big Scopes Keep Satellite Vigil.

Byline: Stories by John J. Lumpkin Journal Staff Writer

WHITE SANDS MISSILE RANGE They are not exactly combat astronomers, but they are part of the military's war effort in space.

At a lonely outpost near Socorro, members of Detachment 1 of the Air Force's 18th Space Surveillance Squadron scan the sky nightly, tracking pinpoints of light that are satellites in high orbits.

The military observatory is primarily an intelligence-gathering operation, acknowledged Master Sgt. John "Jabbo" Moore, the detachment's commander. The site can track foreign military and civilian satellites after they are launched, giving the United States a clue what other countries are up to in space. …

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