Chinese scientists push plan to destroy Elon Musk’s satellites

The researchers note that Starlink satellites could threaten China  ‘s national security .

Chinese military researchers have developed a plan to destroy Elon Musk ‘s satellites as  a “national security threat.”

Scientists have been alerted to “the enormous potential for military applications” of Starlink, Musk ‘s satellite internet service , and are seeking measures to counteract this growing constellation.

His article was published last month in China’s Modern Defense Technology magazine .

Starlink “threats China”

Chinese researchers are particularly concerned about the potential military capabilities of the constellation, which they say could be used to track hypersonic missiles; dramatically increase the data transmission speeds of US drones and stealth fighter jets; or even ram and destroy Chinese satellites.

China has already had a few near misses with Starlink satellites , since it wrote to the UN last year to complain that the country’s space station was forced to carry out emergency maneuvers to avoid “close encounters” with Starlink satellites in Julyand October 2021.

“A combination of soft and hard removal methods should be adopted to make some Starlink satellites lose their functions and destroy the constellation’s operating system,” said the researchers, led by Ren Yuanzhen, a researcher with the Beijing Telecommunication and Tracking Institute, which is part of the Chinese Army’s Strategic Support Force. Hard and soft kill are the two categories of space weapons, with hard kill being weapons that physically hit their targets (such as missiles) and soft kill including jamming and laser weapons.

China already has multiple methods to disable satellites . These include microwave jammers that can disrupt communications or fry electrical components; powerful millimeter-resolution lasers that can capture high-resolution images and blind satellite sensors; cyber weapons to hack satellite networks; and long-range anti-satellite missiles (ASATs) to destroy them, according to the US Department of Defense, but researchers say these measures, which are effective against individual satellites, will not be enough to sink Starlink.

“The Starlink constellation constitutes a decentralized system. The confrontation is not about individual satellites, but about the entire system,” the researchers wrote. The researchers also described how an attack on the Starlink system would require “some low-cost, high-efficiency measures.”

What is StarLink?

Starlink is an internet project Event that will work with a constellation of SpaceX low orbit satellites.

The purpose of the mission is to connect everyone to the Internet, especially those users who, due to the geography of the city where they live, cannot access local services. Its operation only requires a capture antenna and modem for the interior of the home or company.

In Peru, the Ministry of Transport and Communications (MTC) has given it the concession to operate in the country for 20 years .

At the moment, Starlink internet download speeds reach up to 150 Mbps with latencies of 20 to 40 ms, which is average compared to local services. It works in 32 countries of the world.