Sir Julian Corbett 's Thoughts On U.s. Hegemony Of Low Earth Orbit
1709 Words Sep 23rd, 2016 7 Pages
Satellites – manmade systems deliberately placed in Earth’s orbit – undeniably benefit humankind, from enhancing scientific understanding, communications, and situational awareness to expanding commerce and development. Correspondingly, low-Earth orbit (LEO) represents the point of entry for the security, economic, and informational benefits humans derive from space because almost every manmade object traveling through this medium – communication satellites, manned vehicles, and planetary probes – first enters LEO en route to its final destination in outer space or on Earth.
For this reason, LEO has become a global commons, an otherworldly line of communication, to governmental and civilian entities who possess the financial resources and will to access outer space. Until recently, the only spacefaring nations were the United States, Soviet Union/Russia, and later, China. Meanwhile, exponential advances in technology have motivated these and other government, military, and civilian actors to seek greater access to LEO and beyond. Consequently, with the proliferation of technology and financial resources for space activities, control of outer space has become a greater concern for those organizations who might benefit from this relatively new frontier. As the leading military and economic power in the world (and wishing to retain that status), space dominance is especially significant to the United States.…