ASAT Full Form
ASAT Full Form-What is ASAT? The Details You Need To Know: ASAT’s are space weapons designed to incapacitate or destroy satellites for strategic or tactical purposes.
ASAT Full Form
FAQs About ASAT:
ASAT is short for anti-satellite weapon. A satellite is what is known as an "active" system. The U.S. Space Command defines a "passive" system as "anything with a power source and a means of moving around". The purpose of an ASAT is to prevent, deter or degrade enemy satellite control. The weapons can destroy large satellites at distances of thousands of miles, by forcing an array of warheads to impact simultaneously. The term anti-satellite warfare has been used since the Cold War. However, the first U.S. combat use of an ASAT came in 1998, when the United States shot down an aging Russian missile that had posed a threat to American satellites. The Missile Defense Agency operates one of the five land-based interceptor missiles, or "kill vehicles," as part of the U.S.
ASATs have a long history of development. The American Space Surveillance Network, SARA, was tasked with monitoring space debris. It was in 1967 that the U.S.S. Ranger first recorded an ASAT test. In the following decades, several nations were rumored to be building ASATs. For instance, in 1993 the U.S. Air Force claimed that Russia was developing an ASAT for an estimated $160 billion and claimed that the launch of this weapon had been postponed. In 1998, Russia allegedly launched an anti-satellite test in an effort to damage NASA’s Galileo spacecraft which was in orbit around Jupiter at that time. Meanwhile, the U.S. Air Force also claimed to have intercepted Chinese missile launches in 2007 and in 2010. The Chinese fired a missile into a geo-stationary orbit.
ASAT weapon are not as simple as shooting down a satellite with a missile. The United States, China, Russia, and other nations work to create complex systems that track, target, and maneuver satellites for destruction. The Missile Defense Agency (MDA) of the U.S. Department of Defense has reported that China has built a multistage, multiple stage nuclear ASAT system known as DF-21D. The DF-21D is considered a breakthrough in ASAT technology. It could potentially attack not only U.S. satellites but also U.S. communications, military satellites, and even weather satellites. The most recent tests for the DF-21D were made in 2011. This is considered to be a first generation missile system that does not yet have accuracy sufficient to be effective against U.S. satellites.
The key to any military operations — be it on land, in the air or at sea — is intelligence and information. In the case of ASAT systems, they provide this crucial intelligence with their precision targeting. As well as protecting themselves from enemy missile strikes, space-based systems are invaluable in monitoring military forces' activities and providing early warning. The ease of working with these systems makes them attractive to nation-states. The first mention of the possibility of a satellite-destroying missile in the public domain was in November 1962 by a Defense Intelligence Agency report titled "HIMP Alert," which detailed a weapon that could penetrate US orbit and destroy enemy satellites.
ASAT weapons are worrisome because they could change the balance of power in outer space. In future conflicts, a rapidly developing country may target the capabilities of a leading nation. And the standoff between these two nations could quickly lead to escalation. Thus, ASAT weapons would potentially alter the nature of warfare in outer space. This fact raises the question whether countries that have ASAT capabilities should publicly disclose their capabilities and seek their peaceful use