Friday, June 16, 2006

Science Saturday III: A New Space Race?

Is China embarking on a space race with the U.S.?

A new Defense Department report states that not only is China spending heavily to develop space-based surveillance and reconnaissance systems, it is also investing in navigation warfare and anti-satellite capabilities that pose a direct threat to U.S. and its ability to wage future wars.

Notes "Spook88," a former intelligence officer who blogs at In From the Cold:
From an intelligence perspective, China's emerging navigation warfare strategy is a clear concern to American defense analysts and military planners. Beijing clearly understands that the U.S. has grown increasingly dependent on precision-guided munitions, and the satellites required to guide them to their targets. As a hedge against our precision strike systems, China is developing a two-phased approach. Within their own territory, they plan to deploy GPS jammers, making it more difficult for satellite-guided bombs to find their mark. While military systems use a "secure" mode of GPS, advanced jammers (deployed properly) could have some impact on that system, creating miss distances that would ensure target survival, or minimize damage, and force a re-strike, against an increasingly defense Chinese air defense array. has a detailed look at the Pentagon report here.

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