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Threats to Space Assets and India's Options

Col. Deepak Sharma is Research Fellow at the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses. Click here for detailed profile.
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  • IDSA Occasional Paper No. 22

    Space assets are vulnerable to a variety of threats that include jamming of communications, command and control systems/links, physical attacks on satellites and ground stations, dazzling or blinding of satellite sensors; high-altitude nuclear detonations (HAND). Though in the past space has been used to support military operations, it has remained a conflict -free zone, and this may hold true in the future also. Space is a global common. Despite this some nations are developing a wide spectrum of anti-satellite (ASAT) weapon capabilities. The main driver for this is either their quest for space control or probably they are made to believe that air and space are analogous. For India, cheaper and softer options, like development of electronic warfare and cybernetic attack capabilities, will yield better results than blindly following costly propositions that vitiate the space environment.

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