A new satellite defense technology is about to get its first real-world test in orbit, and while we naturally don’t get to know much about it just yet, the Air Force has confirmed that a classified satellite launching sometime in the near future will carry the awkwardly named Self-Awareness Space Situational Awareness system, or SASSA.
Though the world found out about it through a Russian media outlet, China has been conducting complicated space maneuvers with two of its science satellites over the past few months, directing two of its "Shi Jian" (practice) satellites to rendezvous some 370 miles above the Earth, and possibly even touch. But the fact that China has been so hush-hush about the close encounter has some wondering what it plans to use such technology for.
Our writer probes how best to defend vulnerable satellites from attack.
By Dawn Stover
Posted 10.10.2005 at 2:00 am 0 Comments
The U.S. military relies heavily on satellites for communications, navigation, surveillance and other essential activities. To protect these satellites, some military strategists say we need to deploy defenses that include space weapons. The problem: It's far more expensive and technologically challenging to defend a satellite than to attack one.
Five amazing, clean technologies that will set us free, in this month's energy-focused issue. Also: how to build a better bomb detector, the robotic toys that are raising your children, a human catapult, the world's smallest arcade, and much more.