The US Space Force recently unveiled its latest weapon system that can be used against enemy satellites. The new system could be used against Russia and China, which the U.S. cited as potential threats to its activities in space.

The US Space Force's recently confirmed that it already has 16 units of its new ground-based offensive weapon system. The agency also reported that it has already started working on the system's successor, which is known as Meadowland.

Satellite
Satellite (Representational picture) Pixabay

Anti-Satellite System

The US Space Force's latest weapon system is the Counter Communications System Block 10.2. Basically, the system works by targeting enemy satellites in order to block their communication capabilities. It can be used to disrupt the enemy's information flow and prevent it from coordinating military units.

According to Lieutenant Colonel Stephen Brogan, an official for the US Space Force, the Counter Communications System Block 10.2 marks the first offensive weapon for the agency.
"Nothing else we're doing in Space Force is offensive in nature, where we are actually going after an adversary," he said, according to Bloomberg.

US Space Force's New Weapons

Recently, 16 new units of the system were delivered by the US Space Force's partner L3Harris Technologies, a tech firm and defense contractor based in Florida. Aside from these units, the agency expects to receive four new models of the system sometime in October 2022.

Compared to their predecessor, the newer models will have the capability to jam more satellite frequencies. They will also be lightweight, which means they can be easily deployed in various locations.

Tiangong-1 lifts off
The Long March II-F rocket loaded with China's unmanned space module Tiangong-1 lifts off from the launch pad in the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center, Gansu province September 29, 2011. China successfully launched an experimental craft paving the way for its first space station on Thursday amid a blaze of national pride, bringing the growing Asian power closer to matching the United States and Russia with a long-term manned outpost in space. Reuters

China And Russia As Potential Threats

The US' goal of establishing a military presence in space was made in response to the growing threat posed by other countries. In a report released in January, the Defense Intelligence Agency warned that Russia and China have satellite networks that are capable of spying on the US from space.

"Chinese and Russian space surveillance networks are capable of searching, tracking, and characterizing satellites in all earth orbits," the agency stated according to Newsweek. "This capability supports space operations and counterspace systems. Both states [have] jamming and cyberspace capabilities, directed energy weapons, on-orbit capabilities and ground-based anti-satellite missiles that can achieve a range of reversible to non-reversible effects."