India claims it has successfully destroyed a satellite using an anti-sat missile


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The new colonial movement: In a speech to his nation today, India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced that they have successfully completed their first anti-sat test, using a missile to destroy a satellite in low Earth orbit.

The Indian ASAT test is believed to have destroyed either the Microsat-R or the Microsat-TD satellite, likelier the former according to some sources. They were both built by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO). ISRO launched the Microsat-R on January 24 this year and the Microsat-TD a year before that.

Prime Minister Modi declared the test, codenamed Mission Shakti, a success and claimed that an ASAT missile had destroyed the satellite in its low-Earth orbit.

The missile in question is described as a kinetic kill vehicle, which means it does not carry any explosives or other devices. Instead, its ‘kill’ capability arises simply from the fact that it smashes into the target satellite and shatters it using its kinetic energy.

At this altitude, about 300 km, experts said that debris from the collision would fall back to Earth, burning up in the atmosphere in a matter of weeks instead of posing a threat to other satellites. As a result, Mission Shakti is called a controlled ASAT test.

What this anti-sat test really demonstrates is India’s ability to to hit a very tiny target that is moving more than 17,000 miles per hour with a missile shot from Earth, which proves they can hit any target on Earth, with great accuracy. And it thus a blunt message to both Pakistan and China. Don’t attack us, because if you do, we have the capability to do you great harm.

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6 comments

  • India now has anti-sat technology. And still people cry that we do not need a space force. Someone is watching too much Sci-Fi. The need for a Space Force is becoming all too real.

  • BSJ

    A Space Force that can be blown out of the sky from the ground?

    Someone is indeed watching too much Sci-Fi if they think it makes any sense to put “space fighters” in orbit.

  • Tom Billings

    BSJ said, without checking anything about the reasons for starting a Space Force:

    “A Space Force that can be blown out of the sky from the ground? ”

    In fact, the reason for a Space Force is to provide the research, training, and logistical backup to the new US Space Command, which must soon operate all the US MilSpace assets in the new “non-permissive” environment of Space. The first, and already discussed goals to make it less useful to “blow them out of the sky” include massive proliferation of US MilSpace assets, through mass production of satellites, as will be done for StarLink. Then, lifting them to orbit on the new low-cost commercial launchers.

    Today, there are 4-5 dozen US space assets that give our ground, sea, and air forces great advantages in combat. With preparation by PLASSF and the Russian “Space Troops” of the Russian Aerospace Force, those could be put out of operation in a few hours. That preparation could take 3-5 years from where PLASSF is today, for our current MilSpace assets. Proliferating our assets by 1-2 orders of magnitude will make that a *far* more extensive process. Space Force will plan and arrange that proliferation, carried out by commercial launchers.

    That extension, in turn, will give the concepts of “responsive launch” time to begin replacing those assets Space Force opponents *have* been able to disrupt. Instead of the current 3 years replacement time, “responsive launch” would be expected to begin replacement within 3 days. Again, this will be planned and arranged by Space Force, while the assets themselves will be operated by the “combatant command”, the joint services US Space Command, once in orbit. As Space Force opponents grow their own abilities, US MilSpace Assets will have to move to higher orbits more difficult to reach from the ground. That will require larger apertures and power supplies on the sats, in order to keep the size of ground units communicating with them small enough to be mobile. Space Force will likely have to plan for assembly and construction on-orbit of these larger apertures and power supplies, because no economical launcher could lift them whole, even if folded.

    “Someone is indeed watching too much Sci-Fi if they think it makes any sense to put “space fighters” in orbit.”

    Not too surprisingly, none of those seriously proposing a Space Force are talking about “fighter” craft in orbit. Instead, it is noted that eventually the orbital altitudes will grow so great that speed-of-light latency will degrade the ability to operate assets competently, from Earth. At that point, Space Force operators will have to be sent closer to their assets, in order to keep them in control of their assets. Only then will we see Space Force crews leave Earth.

  • Edward

    BSJ wrote: “A Space Force that can be blown out of the sky from the ground? Someone is indeed watching too much Sci-Fi if they think it makes any sense to put ‘space fighters’ in orbit.

    The proposed Space Force is not about “space fighters in orbit.” It is about methods, equipment, and technologies that defend our space assets. Tom Billings gave as an example that today the U.S. has a limited number of large satellites acting as our eyes and ears, but if we switched to constellations of small satellites, then attacking our eyes and ears would be futile and probably not worth the resources needed for the attack.

    Whether or not a Space Force is formed as a sixth branch of the U.S. military, the defense of our space assets is mandatory, as we greatly depend upon them for civilian and military purposes. That defense will remain largely Earthbound for decades to come.

    The main reason for the Space Force proposal is that the current five branches have not provided the needed protections over the past decade (and longer), and some people believe that a new branch that concentrates on that one objective will do a better job. The current branches have bureaucracies and their own practices that are hard for them to change in order to adapt to today’s conditions.

  • BSJ

    Silly rabbits. The best place to destroy threats to our space assets is on the ground or in the air.

    You know, where we’ve already got equipment and people that are really good at doing what they do.

    Another branch of the military based on magical thinking is unnecessary and a waste of treasure.

    Like any new force is actually going to be staffed by non-bureaucrats and funded by non-partisan politicians un-interested in pork. Yeah, magical things really can happen if we just wish hard enough!

  • Wodun

    BSJ, you might try reading what they wrote and responding to what they said.

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