6th Space Warning Squadron


6th Space Warning Squadron
6th Space Warning Squadron.png
Emblem of the 6th Space Warning Squadron
Country United States
Branch United States Space Force
RoleMissile warning and space surveillance
Part ofSpace Delta 4
Garrison/HQCape Cod Space Force Station
Motto(s)Ever Aware
DecorationsOutstanding Unit ribbon.svg AFOUA
Lt Col Timothy C. Sheehan
Nina Armagno

The 6th Space Warning Squadron is located at Cape Cod Space Force Station, in Sagamore, Massachusetts. It operates the PAVE PAWS radar to watch for missiles launched toward North America. The squadron is assigned to Space Delta 4. The squadron was first organized in October 1979 as the 6th Missile Warning Squadron


The mission of the 6th SWS is to observe United States coasts for incoming sea–launched or intercontinental ballistic missiles using the PAVE PAWS radar system. Also, the 6th is to determine the potential threat of the numbers and destination of incoming missiles; then report continuous information to the North American Aerospace Defense Command, Cheyenne Mountain Space Force Station, and NORTHCOM.[1]


The 6th Space Warning Squadron was founded at Cape Cod Missile Early Warning Station in August 1977. It was the first squadron in the country to be equipped with PAVE PAWS.[2]

PAVE PAWS also generates information on the location and velocity of earth-orbiting satellites to NORAD.

The squadron also had a detachment at North Truro Air Force Station from 1977 to 1985, when the station closed and operations at the accompanying radar dome were taken over by the Federal Aviation Administration. The 2165th Communications Squadron was a separate tenant at CCAFS until 1986 when it was merged with the 6th SWS.


  • Constituted as the 6th Missile Warning Squadron
Activated on 1 October 1979
Redesignated 6th Space Warning Squadron on 15 May 1992



Awards and decorations

  • Air Force Outstanding Unit Award
    • 1 January 1998 – 31 December 1998[3]
    • 1 October 1997 – 30 September 1999[4]
    • 1 October 1995 – 30 September 1997[5]
    • 2014
  • 2004 Partridge Slemon Award as North American Aerospace Defense Command's most outstanding unit for its support of the common defense and partnership in protecting the U.S. and Canadian homelands[6]

List of commanders

  • Col Richard Cable
  • Col Mario V. Mascola
  • Col William R. Smith
  • Lt Col Craig Z. Lowry, 29 June 1995 – ???[7]
  • Lt Col Paul S. Hamilton, 14 December 2004 – 10 August 2006[8]
  • Lt Col Walt Jackim, ??? – 27 June 2014
  • Lt Col David Anderson, 27 June 2014 – ???[9]
  • Lt Col Nathan J. Hippe, ??? – 28 June 2018[10]
  • Lt Col James E. Roberts, 28 June 2018 – 23 June 2020[11]
  • Lt Col Timothy C. Sheehan, 23 June 2020 – present[12]


  1. ^ Global Security: 6th SWS Mission
  2. ^ Global Security: PAVE-PAWS
  3. ^ AFSPC Special Order GA-62, 6 December 1999
  4. ^ AFSPC Special Order GA-58, 6 December 1999
  5. ^ AFSPC Special Order GA-09, 1 November 1997
  6. ^ NORAD Public Affairs Post Tuesday, May 3, 2005
  7. ^ AFHRA FOIA Req 09-0061: 21st Space Wing Roster of Key Personnel (as of 31 December 1996)
  8. ^ 21st Space Wing Roster of Key Personnel (as of 1 Aug 2006)
  9. ^ https://www.peterson.spaceforce.mil/News/Photos/igphoto/2000829636/
  10. ^ https://www.dvidshub.net/image/4521171/6th-sws-gains-new-commander
  11. ^ https://www.dvidshub.net/image/4521171/6th-sws-gains-new-commander
  12. ^ https://www.dvidshub.net/image/6249318/lt-col-timothy-sheehan-takes-command-6th-space-warning-squadron

External links

  • 6th Space Warning Squadron