Futurism
Pew Pew

The US Military Says China Is Developing Anti-Satellite Weapons

byTony Tran
Jul 11
Futurism

"They’re on the march."

Dazzling to Jamming

Top US intelligence officials warn that China is developing advanced weapons technology designed to hinder or destroy orbiting satellites. 

Rear Admiral Michael Studeman issued the warning during a webinar for an intelligence-security trade group last week, according to Bloomberg. He said that China is creating weapons with abilities that range from “dazzling to jamming, to kinetic kill-from-the-ground, from space — all that, they’re on the march.”

“They take a look at our space capability and want to equal and exceed those and be able to dominate to guarantee themselves the maneuvering they need to be able to secure their objectives if they’re in a fight,” Studeman said in a statement during the webinar that was attained by Bloomberg. 

Counterspace Operations

This is just the latest warning from a US military official regarding China’s development of counterspace weapons to target US satellites. 

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In April, the US Director of National Intelligence released a report that claimed the Tiangong space station posed a low-orbit security threat to the US saying the station is intended to “gain the military, economic, and prestige benefits that Washington has accrued from space leadership.”

“[The People’s Liberation Army] will continue to integrate space services — such as satellite reconnaissance and positioning, navigation, and timing (PNT) — and satellite communications into its weapons and command-and-control systems to erode the US military’s information advantage,” the report said. 

The report also detailed how China was planning to develop craft to intercept, capture, or destroy US satellites saying, “China has already fielded ground-based ASAT missiles intended to destroy satellites in LEO and ground-based ASAT lasers probably intended to blind or damage sensitive space-based optical sensors on LEO satellites.”

Fighting Back

Not to be outdone, the US military is already hard at work developing counterspace tech to deal with adversarial spacecraft. For example, one counterspace weapon known as the Meadowlands system is designed to temporarily jam belligerent satellites, according to Bloomberg. 

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The Trump administration also created the US Space Force service branch of the armed forces, which is already developing an arsenal of ground-based weapons to fight satellites. 

“It will be a game of measures and countermeasures and counter-countermeasures for some time to come,” Studeman said. 

READ MORE: Pentagon Sees China’s Offensive Space Technology ‘On the March’ [Bloomberg]

More on space wars: US Intel Chief: Chinese Space Station Is a Threat to National Security

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