US Air Force to Introduce Space Based Surveillance System in 2021
by Staff Writers
Washington DC (Sputnik) Aug 02, 2016
The United States Air Force plans to launch a next-generation Space-Based Space Surveillance system in 2021. The Space Based Space Surveillance System (SBSS) will be used to track space objects, primarily satellites, in geosynchronous orbit. Located some 36,000 kilometers above the equator, the area is densely-populated, with fierce competition for satellite placement.
This competition for orbital proximity, rooted in the numerous advantages of having a satellite at a specific orbital distance from the Earth's surface and hanging above a specific point, has led some US and government officials to feel threatened by Russian and Chinese devices, and has placed a high priority on the SBSS program.
The Bloc 10 Pathfinder, the first satellite in the series, was launched in 2010. It was initially planned to function for 7 years, but its lifetime has been extended to 2020, when a constellation of three next-generation satellites are set to be placed in orbit.
Some $27 million has been allocated to the US Air Force for the SBSS program. The earlier lifetime extension of the original Pathfinder satellite shifted the schedule of the SBSS 'Follow-on' program however, resulting in significantly reduced funding. The US Air Force sent a letter to Congress, saying some $11 million of the original amount was excessive "due to re-phasing of the SBSS Follow-on program."
Air Force spokeswoman Capt. AnnMarie Annicelli said in a July 22 email to SpaceNews that the SBSS funding "was aligned to match the adjusted program schedule, which allowed for the $11.5 [million] reduction."
Annicelli said the launch of the follow-on satellites remains targeted for 2021, but did not detail other program schedule changes.
One of the key proposed features of SBSS follow-on program is the possibility of hosting surveillance payloads on commercial communications satellites positioned in geosynchronous orbit.
Source: Sputnik News
US Air Force
Military Space News at SpaceWar.com
|The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2024 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. All articles labeled "by Staff Writers" include reports supplied to Space Media Network by industry news wires, PR agencies, corporate press officers and the like. Such articles are individually curated and edited by Space Media Network staff on the basis of the report's information value to our industry and professional readership. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) Statement Our advertisers use various cookies and the like to deliver the best ad banner available at one time. All network advertising suppliers have GDPR policies (Legitimate Interest) that conform with EU regulations for data collection. By using our websites you consent to cookie based advertising. If you do not agree with this then you must stop using the websites from May 25, 2018. Privacy Statement. Additional information can be found here at About Us.|