Blog Editor’s Note: We long accepted the expense and difficulty of putting valuable national assets in space because it seemed a relatively safe place. As Space Force and articles like this remind us, that is no longer the case.
That China and Russia have turned space into a battle ground makes perfect sense because the US has so many more of its essential assets in space than they do.
Not only are they deploying these kinds of weapons against the satellites themselves, signals have also long been a target. See last year’s article on Russian nuclear powered electronic warfare satellites.
In many cases the U.S. has wisely kept non-space-based capabilities it can use if satellites are not available. High altitude surveillance planes, terrestrial radio communications, tower and fiber paced TV and telecom. None would be as easy or effective if the space component wasn’t available, but life would go on.
Unwisely, the U.S. has put almost all its PNT in the space basket and resists establishing a complementary capability on the ground. It isn’t a matter of money. Nor is it a lack of technology. It is simply a failure to recognize the coming storm and act to avert or mitigate its impact.
A failure of imagination and concern that could cost us dearly.
Now China launches possible ‘satellite-crushing weapon’ as President Xi calls on military to ‘break new ground’ in arms development following hypersonic nuke test
- China launched Shijian 21 satellite into space Sunday aboard Long March rocket
- Beijing said satellite will test technology aimed at ‘neutralising space debris’
- Washington warns the same technology can be used to take out other satellites
- At a separate military conference after the launch, Xi Jinping called on scientists to ‘break new ground’ in developing weapon technology
China has launched a new craft into space that the US warns could be a satellite-crushing weapon.
Beijing blasted the Shijian 21 satellite into orbit on Sunday aboard a Long March rocket, saying the mission will test ‘technologies to… neutralise space debris’.
But Washington says the same technology can be used to ‘grapple’ and destroy other satellites and is part of China’s strategy to achieve ‘superiority through space-attack systems’.