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History


This page helps preserve and provide the general public-at-large with the history of the Space and Missile Systems Center and Los Angeles Air Force Base in El Segundo, Calif. Here you'll find research papers, podcasts, transcripts and images spanning more than 60 years of Air Force space and missile history.

Explore the history of the Space and Missile Systems Center by listening to these podcasts on your computer, in your car or while walking around the SMC Heritage Center exhibits! With the SMC History Lecture Series podcast, you can learn about Space and Missile Systems Center history from historians, authors, active duty or retired military members, and specialists in research, development and technology.

During the SMC Heritage Center Audio Tour, you'll enjoy background information about the space and missile artifacts on display at the SMC Heritage Center and learn about the people who developed them and the crews that operated them. Click on the links below to listen to individual podcasts.

Schriever Wall of Honor

In 2007, the Air Force Association's Schriever Chapter 147, with support from industry partners, sponsored and commissioned the Statue of General Bernard A. Schriever.  In November 2007, the Space & Missile Systems Center dedicated the Statue and Wall as the General Schriever Memorial. The 60th SMC Anniversary in 2014 was chosen as the initial occasion to recognize some of the earliest pioneers who have made tremendous contributions to our community by adding their names to the Schriever Wall of Honor. Every year additional pioneers are chosen to have their names added to the Schriever Wall of Honor and SMC personnel, Aerospace Corporation, Industry members and community gather to unveil the Wall of Honor in tribute to these pioneers of military space.

 

2014 Inductees

2015 Inductees

2016 Inductees

2017 Inductees

2018 Inductees

 

SMC HISTORY SNAPSHOT

The Space Systems Division, one of SMC’s predecessor organizations, worked with the National Reconnaissance Office to manage and develop the Manned Orbiting Laboratory in the 1960s.  MOL might have been the world’s first long-term space station, but it was never launched.

SSD developed the MOL’s laboratory and launch vehicle for the Air Force, while NRO developed the classified reconnaissance camera system.  In March 1965, SSD awarded contracts for MOL’s preliminary design work to Douglas Aircraft, Lockheed, Boeing and General Electric.  Seventeen military officers had assignments in Los Angeles to be trained as MOL astronauts.

DoD planned to launch five MOL spacecraft between 1968-1970.  The lab had a pressurized, shirt-sleeve environment that didn’t require space suits) while it maintained a near-earth orbit for up to 30 days.  Upon the mission’s completion, the 2-man crew would return to earth in the attached Gemini space capsule and the lab would burn up in reentry. Unfortunately, the MOL program faced mission changes and delays, and incurred significant cost increases.

In June 1969, DoD cancelled the MOL program due to high projected cost increases, and because advances in automated, unmanned space systems made MOL unnecessary.  Among the former MOL astronauts, three became flag officers and seven became astronauts on the Space Shuttle.


Social Media

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SMC has awarded 3 SpEC OTA agreements, totaling $309 million, for the EO/IR Weather System (EWS) program June 2, 2… https://t.co/WBK59kWc1u
RT @SpaceX: After launching @AstroBehnken and @Astro_Doug to orbit on Crew Dragon, Falcon 9 landed on the Of Course I Still Love You drones…
Draft Environmental Assessment for proposed LAAFB space and missile park is available to the public. The public com… https://t.co/whNWONacPH
RT @45thSpaceWing: Yesterday's Crew Demo-2 launch was one for the books! #ICYMI Astronauts launched from American soil for the first time s…
#DYK: The lineage of the Space and Missile Systems Center dates back to 1954 and is responsible for developing the… https://t.co/zQH1WuvK0t
“The future is where I’ll make history!” Check out how @SpaceForceDoD is enhancing the @DeptofDefense’s competitive… https://t.co/lzFJTezfQM
RT @SpaceX: Docking confirmed – Crew Dragon has arrived at the @space_station! https://t.co/KiKBpZ8R2H
RT @NASA: It's been 14 hours since @AstroBehnken and @Astro_Doug launched to space. Before they arrive at the @Space_Station, take a moment…
RT @ExplorersClub: The @SpaceX Dragon now in orbit has been named "Endeavour" by @AstroBehnken and @Astro_Doug who both flew for the first…
RT @nasahqphoto: Check out the first pictures from our remote cameras of the launch of a Falcon 9 rocket with #CrewDragon spacecraft on the…
RT @45thSpaceWing: The success of DM-2 can mean only one thing; Human Space Flight is back on the Eastern Range! Our team at the 45 OG, Det…
RT @SpaceX: Falcon 9 lifts off from historic Launch Complex 39A and sends Crew Dragon to orbit on its first flight with @NASA astronauts to…
RT @US_SpaceCom: 🇺🇸 launching into #space from 🇺🇸 soil for 1st time since '11! Congrats, @SpaceX Dragon Crew, @NASA, @45thSpaceWing! #USSPA
RT @SMC_CC: Who needs sports on Saturday when you can watch history being made! Congrats @NASA, @SpaceX, @SpaceForceDoD @45thSpaceWing, and…
RT @NASAKennedy: After a successful launch at 3:22 p.m. ET, @SpaceX's Crew Dragon spacecraft with @AstroBehnken and @Astro_Doug onboard is…
RT @SecAFOfficial: Congratulations to @NASA @JimBridenstine @SpaceX on today’s historic & successful launch of @AstroBehnken & @Astro_Doug
Separation confirmed. Congratulations to SMC’s mission partner SpaceX for today’s successful launch. https://t.co/F7BULS7x8z
RT @SpaceX: Falcon 9 booster has landed on the Of Course I Still Love You droneship! https://t.co/96Nd3vsrT2
RT @SpaceX: Second stage engine burn complete; Dragon confirmed in good orbit

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Numbers and E-mails

Los Angeles AFB Operator:
(310) 653-1110


LAAFB Base Locator:
(310) 653-3080


ID Card Customer Support:
(310) 653-6556 
(310) 653-5114

61st Security Forces Squadron 61st Security Forces Squadron
(Law Enforcement desk):
(310) 653-5787 
(310) 653-5664

   Media Queries:
(310) 653-1131 or smcpa.media@us.af.mil


Public Queries or Event Requests:
(310) 653-2368 or smcpa.outreach@us.af.mil

 

 Official Public Communication Guidance & Request Process

 

 Air Force Social Media Guidelines