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Satnews Daily
July 14th, 2016

US MILSATCOM Investments... On The Rise?

One of the main responsibilities... if not THE main responsibility... of any government is the protection of those within the defined borders of that nation and, secondarily, of their allies.

Artistic impression of AEHF, image is courtesy of Lockheed Martin.

Such is also true of the need for protection of military satellites. Resilience determination for these crucial, spatial residents requires an understanding of their ability to withstand assault and to protect the data that is relayed to, and from, ground stations. Additionally, more such "watchers of the world" are going to be required to offset hostile threats in space. For the US military, an increase in the number of deployed military satellites may well be within the realm of possibility later this year.

According to reports from the Farnborough Airshow in the UK, a far more conducive environment for billions of dollars in additional satellite acquisition and manufacture spending is causing some of the major players to initiate hope for a market turnaround.

Two such programs that could see additional financial influx would be AEHF (Advanced Extremely High Frequency) and the SBIRS (Space Based Infrared System) programs. The former enables protected SATCOM and the latter is an early missile warning system—both systems were built by Lockheed Martin.

Artistic rendition of SBIRS, image courtesy of Lockheed Martin.

Also expect to note an increased aura of cooperation regarding space ops between the US and their global allies. This could take the form of incorporating a number of different wargame scenarios with multiple players as well as detailing exactly who does what, when, where and to whom.

This speculation rose to attention during the Farnborough event following an official with the US Air Force's statement that indicated US options for MILSATCOM satellites had been drafted for the nation's military leaders that would explain various aspects they could consider for future satellite procurements.

With protection from such adverse incursions as interference, jamming, anti-satellite weaponry and more, there were multiple concerns that the safety of US satellite operations and constellations were in jeopardy... perhaps those former worries will now  shift to a more positive, reasonable and effective stance for the military to greatly improve satellite system protections for the nation and its allies... as well as for the satellites themselves.