US-China counterspace tensions mount

Discussion in 'U.S. Strategic Affairs' started by AMDR, Jun 8, 2016.

Share This Page

  1. AMDR

    AMDR Captain Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 7, 2015
    Likes Received:
    US-China counterspace tensions mount

    JUN 07, 2016

    The annual Pentagon report to Congress on the status of China's military reinforces earlier warnings about a concerted "counterspace" effort that along with electronic warfare and cyber operations could be used to overcome U.S. advantages in "information technology-driven warfare."

    While much of the recent focus of China’s military strategy focuses on frictions in the South China Sea, the report submitted to Congress this spring highlights Beijing's growing focus on countering U.S space assets. "In parallel with its space program, China continues to develop a variety of counterspace capabilities designed to limit or to prevent the use of space-based assets by the [Peoples' Liberation Army’s] adversaries during a crisis or conflict," Defense Department analysts asserted.

    More here:

    Falcon, Pathfinder and Technofox like this.
  2. Technofox

    Technofox That Norwegian girl Staff Member Ret. Military Developer

    Oct 8, 2015
    Likes Received:
    Professional "Doer" of "Things"
    Being a geek
    But that we're hearing of China's efforts to counter US one's means the US is aware of what China has and is doing, and when you know what your adversary is doing, you can develop countermeasures against them. If the public hears about it, you can be sure the military has heard more.

    But does China know what the US is doing? And can it counter-counter measures?
    Falcon, Pathfinder and AMDR like this.
  3. Pathfinder

    Pathfinder Lieutenant Colonel

    Dec 17, 2015
    Likes Received:
    We can also shoot down Chinese satellites. They use GPS too so we can cause them a lot of damage. Its not a one way street.

    ASM-135 ASAT


    1980s: Air-Launched ASAT Systems and the U.S. Strategic Defense Initiative
    In 1982, the United States announced its intention to test the Air-Launched Miniature Vehicle (ALMV), a two-staged missile launched from an F-15 aircraft flying at high altitude. The missile would ascend to a a target satellite in low earth orbit and destroy or disrupt it in a high-speed collision, a technique known as a "kinetic kill" or "hit-to-kill" strategy. Though more technically challenging than a co-orbital strategy, the ALMV offered several advantages, including the flexibility to launch an ASAT attack at any time with significantly reduced time between missile launch and target destruction.

    The U.S. tested its ALMV system several times beginning in 1984, including a 1985 test that destroyed an aging satellite at an altitude of 555 km. The test highlighted the consequences of destructive ASAT technologies: the destroyed satellite generated more than 250 pieces of persistent space debris large enough to be tracked, as well as more than 800 smaller pieces. In December 1985, Congress banned further testing of the system on satellites. The Air Force discontinued the ALMV program in 1987.

    In the spring of 1983, President Reagan gave his "Star Wars" speech and announced that he intended to focus U.S. resources on developing a large-scale missile defense system. This Strategic Defense System (SDI) was expected to develop several types of space-based interceptors with intrinsic ASAT capabilities. The Soviet Union responded by restarting research on its own missile-defense systems and also made diplomatic overtures, proposing a ban on space-based weapons and declaring a unilateral moratorium on its ASAT weapons tests.

    1980s–1990s: The U.S. MIRACL and KE-ASAT Systems, Soviet Laser ASAT System
    Ground-based ASAT weapons based on directed electromagnetic energy (such as lasers) offer the potential to attack satellites with differing levels of intensity: low-powered lasers can merely "dazzle" (temporarily overwhelm) or "blind" (permanently damage) parts of a satellite's sensor, while high-powered lasers can disable, damage, or destroy a satellite.

    In the late 1980s, the Air Force and Navy began developing an anti-satellite ground-based laser system, in part due to intelligence reports suggesting that the Soviet Union had developed a working laser system that could pose a significant threat to both satellites and ballistic missile.

    The Navy coupled its megawatt-class Mid-Infrared Advanced Chemical Laser (MIRACL) to the Sea Lite beam director, a large and agile mirror that can direct the MIRACL's beam, but Congress banned tests of the system following revelations that the Soviet laser system posed no significant threat. The ban lapsed in 1996, and in 1997 the MIRACLE system appeared to be successfully used to dazzle or damage a satellite's sensor at an altitude of 420 km.

    During this period, the U.S. Army accelerated plans for its own ground-based ASAT system, known as the kinetic-energy ASAT (KE-ASAT) program. The Department of Defense terminated the program in 1993, but Congress resurrected it in 1996 and authorized funding of the program from 1996 - 1998, and then again in 2000 and 2001. No funding has since been authorized and the KE-ASAT system was never tested on a space-borne object, though three "kill vehicles" were completed and placed in storage; two have since been dismantled for other uses.

    2000s: Satellite Jamming, Renewed U.S. Interest in ASAT Capabilities, and ASAT Efforts from China and India
    Satellite jamming—interfering with radio communications between a satellite and users on the ground—is another potential ASAT technology. Both the United States and Russia likely have jamming capabilities effective out to geosynchronous orbit. In 2002, the United States deployed the ground-based Counter Communications System, but little is publicly known about its specific capabilities.

    The U.S. and other countries are actively developing other ASAT-related technologies, including satellites that can maneuver and approach targets and advanced ground-based laser systems that can more effectively interfere with a satellite's sensors.

    In 2007, China used a mobile, ground-based missile to launch a homing vehicle that destroyed one of its aging weather satellites by direct impact, or "kinetic kill"—and created more persistent debris than any other event in space. In 2008, the U.S. demonstrated the ASAT capabilities of its sea-based Aegis missile defense interceptors by destroying a non-responsive U.S. satellite at an altitude of 240 km. In 2010, India announced its intentions to develop a hit-to-kill ASAT system.
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2016
    Falcon and AMDR like this.
  4. Falcon

    Falcon Lieutenant Colonel Staff Member Social Media Team

    Oct 10, 2015
    Likes Received:
    We can hurt them back BUT they still have hordes of soldiers equipped with older Cold War equipment and systems that do not rely on GPS and other gizmos. They can still use these against someone like Vietnam or the Philippines even if they don't have GPS. We completely depend on GPS. I don't want to sound crazy but it would be worth keeping equipment that is not vulnerable to things like cyber attacks and equipment as well as doctrine that does't rely on GPS and network centric warfare. This would be a good backup plan because those threats are out there and a real. I don't think Russia and China are keeping thousands of tanks in storage that can be put on the battle field in relatively short notice. Ours are sitting out in the desert in junk yards.