# Unprecedented weaponization of space

1. Mar 30, 2004

### Ivan Seeking

Staff Emeritus
"unprecedented weaponization of space"

http://abcnews.go.com/sections/SciTech/US/space_weapons_040330-1.html

2. Mar 31, 2004

### Phobos

Staff Emeritus
Aw crud, here we go again. I guess Bush doesn't want my vote in November. The weaponization of space is one slippery slope I wouldn't want to embark on. Perhaps it's inevitable, but eventually it leads to new WMDs (recall the "Ivan's Hammer" concern of the 1980s where the USSR & US looked into the use of near earth asteroids as weapons that could demolish a city...or maybe a small country...in one shot).

3. Mar 31, 2004

### phatmonky

Part of me supports the weaponization of space. Another doesn't. There is to be argued that we presently hold a military monopoly, and nothing breaks a monopoly better than new markets that set a level plain for the new competition. Could space weaponization actually lead to us losing that race, and thus being on the receiving end? Those Russians are quite the crafty engineers.
I think in the end, I'd rather see the military spending go towards more technology put into intelligence gathering instruments, soldier gear, and further advances in air superiority.

4. Apr 1, 2004

### Shahil

Physically, mathematically - and whatever else that proves that something is possible - is Space Weaponisation really possible. In the simplest of terms, ain't it just too big with too many non-earthly variables to consider?

5. Apr 1, 2004

### phatmonky

That was the argument put forth before we went to the moon "HA! In the next decade?! It'll take us until ATLEAST the year 2000!!"

The fact is that weaponization of space is absolutely possible, and if left open, fully probable. I enjoy having a marked advantage over other countries militarily, and thus, I don't think I support the weaponization of space. Others would argue because they don't wish to see war leave our planet (space has always held a bit of allure as a fresh start).

6. Apr 1, 2004

7. Apr 1, 2004

### amp

So far, this 'weaponization space' is just consuming taxpayer money. Case in point, the 'missile defense' program is riddled with cost over runs and unproven technology. Which is to say how do you test it? The tests that I've heard about indicate we have a long way to go before we can shoot down missiles from space. And I recently read that Russia has developed a low tech (inexpensive) way to thwart our high tech (expensive) defense. It is possible to base weapon platforms in space, weather its feasible at this time is open to conjecture.

8. Apr 1, 2004

### Ivan Seeking

Staff Emeritus
For the record, the NMD is being implemented right now. It is being installed all along the west coast.

9. Apr 1, 2004

### Pergatory

I think that in principal, any defenses erected in space should defend the entire planet, not just those who have managed to get their grubby political fingers in it. It should shoot down any missile it detects no matter who fired it. It should be a joint effort proposed by the U.N. for the welfare of all people. Nothing else makes sense.

Perferably the design of the defense itself should limit its abilities. For example, maybe give it a laser of certain wavelength that can only penetrate to a certain altitude so it can only be used against missiles and aircraft. Any room for power will create a power struggle. The only way to ensure its purpose is by limiting its capabilities.

This was the genius that allowed America's government to survive for so long, even now the greedy politicians have still not figured out a way to fully remove the power of the people.

10. Apr 1, 2004

### amp

Thanks for the update Ivan, but even though its being implemented from what I've read it is a front because to many of the problems that surfaced during its design are not resolved. In fact the article I read did say it was being implemented peicemeal.

11. Apr 1, 2004

### Ivan Seeking

Staff Emeritus
That sounds right.

[I have worked on the program and I know many people involved. I hope to be back on the project soon...sucking up that Republican pork ]

To be fair, the first failure was due to a minor problem with the N2 cooling [someone forgot to top off the tank. Just before the strike the sensors went off-line due to heat]. The third test worked...mostly.

I don't think it will ever work. Besides, why are we wasting time with missiles when we have viable LASER technology coming along so well.

Last edited: Apr 1, 2004
12. Apr 1, 2004

### amp

ROTFLMAO - And here I thought it was going so smoothly.

13. Apr 1, 2004

### Ivan Seeking

Staff Emeritus
Yes there were a lot of red faces at Raytheon and Boeing.

The latest rumor is that things do look pretty good.

14. Apr 2, 2004

Slightly off topic but along these lines... I recently read an article (by one of our astronauts, I think) that told of the $12,000 pen NASA had designed and engineered so that they could write in space. The cosmonauts took pencils. 15. Apr 2, 2004 ### skywise ROTFL! That really sums up in a nutshell so many many things our gov't wastes money on.. 16. Apr 2, 2004 ### Monique Staff Emeritus And how much money did the pencil sharpner cost? You know.. to collect those shavings ;) the astronauts probably wouldn't use it and just take 10 extra pencils along :P 17. Apr 2, 2004 ### Tsu Oh, probably 2 or 3 bucks (american) But the astronauts don't need pencils!! They have$12,000 pens!!! But if they DID decide to just use pencils, I'm sure they'd have to design a \$10,000 (at LEAST!) built-in, electronic shaving-catching pencil-sharpener with digital readout of time, temp and the NY stock exchange!

18. Apr 4, 2004

### Ivan Seeking

Staff Emeritus
It only requires that we understand the philosophy of government spending. As stated in the movie "Contact": "Why build one when you can build two for twice the price?"

There was another comment made by someone famous...I forget who...that goes something like: You spend a few million here, and 100 million there, and pretty soon you're talking about real money!

As for the topic, I suspect that this is just be an unprecedented declassification of the weaponization of space budget. Since we have had the technology to weaponize space for maybe 35 years now I would think that we already have nukes floating around on satellites. AFAIK this is not really a very difficult thing for us to do.

19. Apr 6, 2004

### Robert Zaleski

20. Apr 13, 2004