The creation of NORAD was announced on August 1st, 1957. NORAD, or the North American Aerospace Defense Command, is headquartered at Peterson Air Force Base outside of Colorado Springs, Colorado.
The Cheyenne Mountain Complex, a network of EMP and nuclear-hardened bunkers deep inside Cheyenne Mountain, is the Alternate Command Center for NORAD.
In addition to the military role that NORAD plays for defending the United States and Canada, it used to track space assets. Once the USAF Space Command was created those responsibilities shifted away from NORAD.
If you’re a fan of Stargate, in any of its numerous variations, Cheyenne Mountain Complex is also the location of a Stargate.
The original Stargate movie was released in 1994, and it spawned numerous TV shows and movies. I loved the first movie and watched some of the SG-1 series, but the show went on for 10 seasons plus a few follow on shows, and I never had the time to watch any of those.
Since we are talking about Cheyenne Mountain and its located in Colorado, I want to mention that it’s Colorado day today.
On August 1st, 1876, Colorado was admitted to the Union as the 38th state. Colorado is home to numerous space companies, The Aerospace Corporation, Ball Aerospace, Boeing, Digital Globe, Sierra Nevada (which makes the Dream Chaser lifting-body spaceplane), Raytheon, the United Launch Alliance and countless others.
Colorado is also home to the USAF Space Command and the University of Colorado’s Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics. There’s also hundreds upon hundreds of small aerospace businesses spread around Colorado.
I’ve recorded two episodes in my Centennial Series of podcasts that focus on the Colorado Space industry. I’m planning on doing a new podcast in that series soon, but need to work out the logistics due to my new job.
Read about the 60th anniversary here.