Space is the newest frontier for innovation, competition and technological superiority across the globe. As the world turns its focus toward space, the United States must pick up its pace to maintain overmatch and dominance in the increasingly contested and, at times, volatile domain.
Roger Krone, CEO and chairman of Leidos, spoke with Executive Mosaic in an exclusive video interview about the challenges facing the U.S. in space and what we’re doing to address them as we emerge from a relatively peaceful era in space and into a more competitive one.
“We have enjoyed a period where space was not a contested domain, it was not viewed as a warfighting domain by us, and the rest of the world went along. It’s not clear to me that that is the situation in the future,” said Krone, Executive Mosaic’s most decorated Wash100 winner at 10 consecutive awards.
While Krone highlighted the urgency behind space developments, he also called attention to the advancements the country has made in the last few years. For example, the U.S. Space Force was broken out from the Air Force, protecting space budgets and ensuring necessary investments in space. Additionally, the private sector is expanding its footprint in the domain.
“We have opened up what I would call ‘new space’ or ‘commercial space.’ We’ve seen a lot of new entrants in both the national security space and in civil space, and I think that has been great,” Krone commented.
Krone also noted that “we are at the end of a desert of government investment in space” — a much-needed development as we emerge from two decades without the development of a new satellite bus.
But if the U.S. is to solidify its dominance in space, public and private sector leaders alike must continue to prioritize speed and investments in advanced technologies.
“I don’t like the fact that space could become a warfighting domain, but we’ve got to face reality and invest in capability and systems, so that if it does become a warfighting domain, we can defend our access to space,” Krone urged.
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