Spaceflight Insider

45th Space Wing re-designated as Space Launch Delta 45

A United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket soars skyward in November 2020 with the NROL-101 payload for the National Reconnaissance Office. Its launch was supported by the 45th Space Wing, which was today re-designated to Space Launch Delta 45. Photo Credit: Theresa Cross/Spaceflight Insider, Illustration Credit: Derek Richardson/Spaceflight Insider

The United States Space Force has re-designated the 45th Space Wing, which oversees launches on Florida’s Space Coast, as Space Launch Delta 45.

Via a virtual ceremony held at Patrick Space Force Base in Florida, the change occurred May 11, 2021. Space Launch Delta 45’s commander is Brig. Gen. Stephen Purdy.

While its roots go back further, the 45th Space Wing itself was formed in 1991 and has since supported nearly 800 launches across the Eastern Range, which includes today’s Patrick Space Force Base and Cape Canaveral Space Force Station and extends some 10,000 miles through the South Atlantic, according to a virtual re-designation video posted by the service on YouTube.

“I am proud of the guardians and airmen of today’s 45th Space Wing and the tens of thousands of your predecessors who for decades have worked tirelessly to earn the Wing’s preferred motto as ‘The World’s Premier Gateway to Space,’” said Lt. Gen. Stephen Whiting, commander of Space Operations Command, during the video. “Today we’re marking yet another milestone in the storied history of this base and this mission set. And I think we’ll be posturing the 45th to keep using that moniker for many decades to come.”

The plan is to also re-designate the 30th Space Wing at Vandenberg Air Force Base (itself expected to be renamed as a Space Force base) in California to Space Launch Delta 30. While currently reporting to the Space Force’s Space Operations Command in Colorado Springs, Colorado, they’ll be expected to begin reporting to the new Space Systems Command in Los Angeles later this year.

Video courtesy of Space Launch Delta 45


Theresa Cross grew up on the Space Coast. It’s only natural that she would develop a passion for anything “Space” and its exploration. During these formative years, she also discovered that she possessed a talent and love for defining the unique quirks and intricacies that exist in mankind, nature, and machines. Hailing from a family of photographers—including her father and her son, Theresa herself started documenting her world through pictures at a very early age. As an adult, she now exhibits an innate photographic ability to combine what appeals to her heart and her love of technology to deliver a diversified approach to her work and artistic presentations. Theresa has a background in water chemistry, fluid dynamics, and industrial utility.

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