VP Harris: US commits to no anti-satellite tests that fill orbit with debris
The U.S. has declared it will no longer perform anti-satellite missile testing, a practice nearly universally deplored by the space community for its tendency to fill orbit with dangerous debris. Vice President Harris announced the new policy today in hopes of leading by example — though it hasn’t been that long since we were doing this too.
The anti-satellite commitment is the first in a planned series of new “space norms” being contemplated by the National Security Council, the Pentagon, the State Department and others concerned about the safety and security of orbital operations.
Being able to take out a satellite in orbit is one of those capabilities that military forces around the world just love to demonstrate, generally under the fig leaf of showing it can remotely deorbit a malfunctioning piece of their own hardware. Of course, the primary purpose is to show they can knock anyone else’s birds out of the sky, should that be deemed necessary.