The Johns Hopkins University’s Applied Research Laboratory has opened a new field office in Colorado as the organization looks to establish a presence in the aerospace hub.
The office will host staff members tasked to directly engage with stakeholders in Colorado Springs, including government contractors and U.S. Space Force commands, amid increasing interest in space, the laboratory said Friday.
The field will serve as a link between the APL main campus in Laurel, Maryland, and USSF organizations to ensure that the Space Operations Command and the Space Training and Readiness Command receive the necessary technical expertise to respectively manage U.S. military satellites and evaluate hopeful guardians from the Air Force Academy.
Dennis Woodfork, a program manager within APL’s space exploration sector, said work could help Space Force in automating weapon systems or in applying new approaches to operational strategies in the future.
“It could also mean conceiving brand new ways to train its guardians, or test and evaluate its future weapon systems,” he added.
The office could also pave way to establishing potential connections with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Lincoln Laboratory, Northrop Grumman, ExoAnalytic Solutions, Mitre, the Missile Defense Agency and other space-related institutions also located in Colorado Springs.
The new facility was opened three months after APL demonstrated a suborbital space vehicle condition sensor onboard Virgin Galactic’s VSS Unity spacecraft.