US warned of Chinese ability to militarise space technology to block American radars, jam sophisticated weapons systems
The ANI report said that it gives credence to what was suspected by the international community till now that China has reached a stage of self-reliance in space technology and acquired capabilities to "prevail in a major conflict with the United States."
Washington: The United States suspects that China may have a plan-in-waiting to use space technology to block American radars and jam sophisticated weapons systems if the need arises, according to recent reports. Recently, the Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA) of the US, has submitted an 80-page report for consideration by the Biden administration and action.
The report, which is cited by The Singapore Post, said that it gives credence to what was suspected by the international community till now that China has reached a stage of self-reliance in space technology and acquired capabilities to "prevail in a major conflict with the United States and is aggressively launching, acquiring, and obtaining through espionage the counter-space capabilities necessary to do so."
"As China`s and Russia`s space and counter-space capabilities increase, both nations are integrating space scenarios into their military exercises," the report said, according to The Singapore Post.
However, the DIA focuses more on the activities of China which it finds are "most worrisome to the United States, not only because of the country`s rapid growth in space--doubling the number of ISR satellites it has in space to 250 since 2018--but also its rapid acquisition and pursuit of counter-space capabilities".
"The PLA probably sees counterspace operations as a means to deter and counter a U.S. intervention during a regional military conflict," the DIA wrote in the report.
Quoting an article by DefenseOne, the military analysis website, th DIA said: "China has claimed that `destroying or capturing satellites and other sensors` would make it difficult for the US and allied militaries to use precision-guided weapons."
The DIA also found that China "probably is developing jammers dedicated to targeting SAR, including aboard military reconnaissance platforms," referring to the advanced synthetic aperture radar systems that allow clear imagery even at night or during bad weather, DefenseOne said.
Those jammers "would be key to preventing the US and US-affiliated commercial satellite firms from maintaining a clear picture over Taiwan, as they have in Ukraine".
Notably, the China National Space Administration is China`s equivalent to NASA. It is supervised by the State Administration for Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense, which handles defense-related science and technology, including China`s state-owned defense conglomerates.
The infrastructure of the country`s space program is similarly militarised. The PLA runs under its command the launch sites, control centers, and even satellites.Most of the personnel, including the astronauts, working in the space program are military personnel, as per The Singapore Post.
The DIA report, analyses of DefenseOne, and western military experts, all say in one voice while there could be a tremendous potential of a Chinese and the Americans working together on space programs, China faces a trust deficit.