Kaena Point Satellite Tracking Station
The Kaena Point Satellite Tracking Station is a United States Air Force military installation in Kaena Point on the island of Oahu in Hawaii. It is a remote tracking station of the Air Force Satellite Control Network responsible for tracking satellites in orbit, many of which support the United States Department of Defense, receiving and processing data and in turn, enabling control of satellites by relaying commands from control centers. The station originally opened in 1959 to support CORONA, an early reconnaissance satellite program.
Detachment 4, 22d Space Operations Squadron, part of the 50th Space Wing, operates Hawaii Tracking Station on the site. It was constructed in 1959, one of three built that year. The facility is placed near the westernmost point of the island of Oahu, atop a 1,500-foot (460 m) high ridge. The two radomes are locally known as the "golf balls", and are a popular landmark for fishing vessels in the surrounding waters.
Yokohama Bay state park is at the base of the ridge, with a hiking trail that goes to the point and around to the northern side of the ridge, to Mokuleia Beach. By permit only (see below), the station roadways provide access to state hiking and hunting trails, as well as a camping site about 10 miles (16 km) inland called Peacock Flats. Permits to enter through the station to hike, hunt, or camp on the surrounding State lands can be obtained from the Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources in downtown Honolulu.