Does the United States need space-based weapons? (CADRE by William L. Spacey II

By William L. Spacey II

The U.S. Air strength is expounded to be evolving into an Air and house strength on its approach to changing into an area and Air strength. a part of this transition comprises the opportunity of deploying guns in house. whereas a lot has been written in regards to the want for guns in house, or conversely the necessity to maintain area as a sanctuary, little has been released approximately what space-based guns can and can't convey to the battlefield.
A selection to place guns in area, or to chorus from doing so, might be in response to a company starting place of information approximately what the guns could be anticipated to do. a variety of suggestions were encouraged as normal evolutions of floor and airborne guns; it truly is serious to ascertain how those orbital guns examine with their terrestrial opposite numbers. This essay evaluates the theoretical functions of orbital guns and compares them to guns already in life and ideas proposed for development.
The goal of this essay is to supply perception into the place destiny investments might be made if the USA is to guard its more and more very important space-based resources, and maintain its place as an international chief capable of venture army energy anywhere worthy.

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7. Anthony E. : University Science Books, 1986), 68. 8. Colin S. : Abt Books, 1982), 56. 9. ; Duncan S. , Jane’s Strategic Weapon Systems (Coulsdon, England: Jane’s Information Group, Sentinel House, 1997), Tab: Offensive Weapons, Issue 26 January 1998. In contrast to a liquid-fueled missile’s thin aluminum skin containing highly volatile, pressurized fuel, a solid-rocket motor uses a glass-reinforced plastic case coated with epoxy resin built to act as the combustion chamber. The considerably thicker walls of this design will require the laser to deliver more energy before it bursts.

Muolo, vol. 2, 151. 27. Bethe and Garwin, 339–43. Optimistic assumptions include instan taneous retargeting and only five seconds needed to destroy a missile. Further derivations raise the number to 1,344 satellites to stop a 3,000missile launch, assuming perfect reliability. 28. Dooling, 59; and BMDO Fact Sheet 97-01, 2. 29. The total number of missiles the system would be able to destroy is not given in Dooling, London and Pike, or BMDO Fact Sheet 97-01. 30. An orbital laser designed for BMD would have to be able to engage a missile launched on an intersecting trajectory that crossed at 90 degrees to 44 SPACY the laser.

S. Thermionic Effort,” Aviation Week & Space Technology, 6 April 1992, 28. Even using nuclear power would be problematic. The reactors required to produce the 25 megawatts needed for a laser, assuming 100 percent conversion from electrical to laser energy, are not the types currently used in space. For instance, the controversial Cass ini space probe, launched in October 1997, used a plutonium-based reactor that only produced an average power of 745 watts. Even the Topaz 2 reactor purchased from Russia by the Bush administration is only thought to be scalable up to 50–70 kW, not the megawatt levels needed for laser weapons.

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