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The US Air Force Wants More Money to Defend Its Satellites

Published: February 16, 2018
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Source: motherboard

The US Air Force wants to spend around $8 billion in 2019 on harder-to-destroy satellites and other space equipment as it prepares for a possible orbital showdown with Russia and China.

But the military should also consider talking to its orbital rivals in order to head off conflict, one expert advised.

The 2019 budget for Air Force space equipment and R&D, including new satellite defenses, represents a 9-percent increase over 2018.

The Air Force, which controls most of the military's spacecraft and accounts for the majority of the Defense Department's space spending, warned of other countries' "ability to counter US space superiority."

In recent years both Russia and China have launched miniature satellites whose main job is to inspect damaged spacecraft, but which could also maneuver close to American spacecraft and disable them. Russia and China also possess powerful electronic jammers that can block the signals from GPS satellites, potentially disrupting US forces' navigation and precision bombing.

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