Space Control

By our count, the Air Force’s Fiscal 2009 spending proposal contains about $405 million for the development and procurement of capabilities to better monitor space for threats, protect friendly assets on orbit, and potentially deny an adversary the use of its satellites. Space situational awareness work gets the lion’s share of this funding with $224 million, followed by $104 million for defensive and offensive counterspace efforts and $77 million for maturation of space control technology. These amounts are a hefty boost over Fiscal 2008 numbers. For example, one Air Force official said Feb. 1 there is “about a 21 percent bump-up” for SSA compared to 2008. Remember, the Chinese anti-satellite test came in January 2007, right before the Defense Department submitted its Fiscal 2008 spending plan to Congress. So aside from the Congressional plus-ups that USAF received, this is really the first baseline budget to reflect the post-ASAT test world. Counterspace accounts, which include money for the counter satellite communications system and rapid identification, detection, and reporting system, also go up by about 20 percent and the projected outlays for space control technology spike upward by about 16 percent.