Headquartered in Chantilly, Virginia, the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO) develops and operates unique and innovative overhead reconnaissance systems and conducts intelligence-related activities for U.S. national Security.
The NRO also maintains ground stations at Buckley Air Force Base, Colorado, Fort Belvoir, Virginia, White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico, as well as a presence at the Joint Defense Facility Pine Gap, Australia, and the Royal Air Force Base Menwith Hill Station, United Kingdom. NRO spacecraft launch offices reside at Cape Canaveral AFB, Florida and Vandenberg AFB, California.
The NRO, one of 17 Intelligence Community agencies, was officially established in September 1961 as a classified agency in the Department of Defense (DoD). The existence of the NRO and its mission were declassified in September 1992.
A hybrid organization consisting of some 3000 personnel consisting of NRO cadre, members of the armed services, the Central Intelligence Agency, and DoD civilian personnel. The NRO is managed by a Director, a Principal Deputy Director, and a Deputy Director.
The NRO is funded through the National Intelligence Program (NIP) and the Military Intelligence Program (MIP) consistent with the priorities and processes established by the DNI and the Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence (USD(I)).