Space power a force multiplier

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Space power a force multiplier

CHAPTER – I

INTRODUCTION

1. The Space has always been a great matter of interest to human race, which gazed and tried to explore this cosmic world for thousands of years. Even our own epics talk a lot about space and its utilisation.

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However, Science flourished during the European Renaissance and fundamental physical laws governing planetary motion were discovered, and the orbits of the planets around the Sun were calculated. The Chinese were the first to develop a rocket in around 1212 AD. In 1883, a Russian schoolmaster, Konstantin Tsiolkovsky, first explained the mechanics of how a rocket could fly into space.[2]. In the 17th century, astronomers pointed a new device called the telescope at the heavens and made startling discoveries[3]. On 03 Oct 1942, German scientists launched an A-4 rocket, which travelled a distance of 190 km and reached an altitude of over 80 km. Orbital operations started with Soviet Sputnik-1 satellite in 1957[4]. Since then exploration and exploitation of the space has been a continued effort. This led to the unfolding of mysteries of the space world and thus using it for own advantages.

2. Military use of space started with the launch of an American reconnaissance satellite in 1960.[5] Since then, the utilisation of space has been a matter of debate and controversies as far as direct war fighting military roles and missions are concerned. However, the support operations like Intelligence, communication and reconnaissance, which came first, did not face much of resistance. The benefits possible from the space-based support operations were realised very quickly and these operations were extended further to surveillance, mapping, navigation, ground mapping, environmental monitoring etc. Space systems have brought better intelligence and stronger defences by enabling the collection of new types of data and information; significantly increasing communications capabilities and capacities; revolutionizing precision navigation and timing; enriching science; establishing new markets; providing safer air, land, and sea transportation; and enabling faster disaster relief as well as more effective civil planning[6].

3. The phenomenal utilization and exploitation of the space medium has finally provided the users the power to gain advantage over the enemy. Traditionally, power has been related to explosive ordinance and target destruction. But in the post-Cold War world, the "power" most often delivered by airmen has taken the form of humanitarian aid: food, medical supplies, and heavy equipment.[7] Also Knowledge is the purest form of power and is the reason that overhead surveillance, reconnaissance, and intelligence-gathering efforts are so important in both war and peace. Information delivered from above can be used to strengthen a friendly regime, discredit an enemy regime, or directly attack the morale of an adversary’s frontline troops. They can detect missile launches,

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