Aukus pact to deepen Australia, US collaboration on space technology | Space

the Aukus The agreement will promote cooperation between the United States and Australia in space, says the head of the Australian space agency Enrico Palermo.

Palermo took part in a panel discussion NASA Administrator Bill Nelson, who also discussed Australia’s role in the next manned mission to the moon known as Artemis.

Palermo said that Australia will be signing the Artemis Agreement – a guide to the principles of space exploration signed by Australia, the US and other countries – was a sign of his commitment to “the rules and standards that aim to ensure the safety, stability and sustainability of space”.

“I should also note that the Aukus Discussion is another indication of the growing depth of cooperation between our two nations and the UK, ”he said. “And we hope that this momentum will continue in the near future with even more trade and collaboration across the space sector.”

The role of space in Aukus was initially glossed over with the announcement of ending Australia’s submarine deal with France in favor of nuclear submarines took precedence.

Shortly after the announcement by the Australian Foreign Minister Aukus, Marise Payne, briefly mentioned it.

“We and our partners have agreed to deepen collaboration in areas such as equitable distribution of vaccines, economic recovery from Covid-19, low-carbon technology, infrastructure investments, critical technologies, education, cybersecurity, space and combating disinformation,” she wrote.

Space is a critical part of any future military action, as satellites are needed for communication, navigation and weapons management. There are fears that if hostilities escalate, nations like China or Russia could target these satellites, making countries like Australia “deaf, dumb and blind”.

A Joint announcement issued after the September meeting in Ausmin that the US and Australia recognized the importance of shared skills and understanding of space-related threats.

Combined satellite activities and a space framework agreement to expand cooperation in “civil research, exploration and use of space for peaceful purposes” are planned.

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According to defense analyst for the Australian Strategic Policy Institute, Malcom Davis, China poses a threat to US, UK and Australian satellites. “The threat of hostile and aggressive behavior in orbit is real,” he wrote, and will be critical to the three space powers.

“China is already using direct ascent, hard-kill anti-satellite or ASAT weapons … and in a crisis endangers the full range of critical US, British and Australian space support,” he wrote.

“Hard kill” ASATs physically destroy satellites. Davis warns that China and Russia have also demonstrated “soft kill” attacks that disable or deny access to satellites.

The space sector is critical to a war that “is precise, decisive, and swift, reducing the cost of lost lives, and minimizing the likelihood of failure,” wrote Davis.

“Reducing the prospect of a successful counterspace campaign and denying China and Russia the ability to deliver a crucial ‘Pearl Harbor in Space’ is probably the most important target for Aukus. Such an attack would quickly take away any knowledge advantage and dramatically increase the risk of a quick defeat, so that the three states are practically ‘deaf, dumb and blind’ in a crisis. “

Nelson spoke about Australia’s longstanding alliance in wars and in space – from time to time The dish was part of the Apollo missions.

He referred to Australia’s role in the 1969 moon landing and promised that NASA is preparing to provide further details on Australia’s role in the Artemis mission.

“We have teamed up with the Australian space agency to identify a possible collaboration on the moon. ‘Cause we’re flying back to the moon We were there before. But this time it’s time to stay and study and prepare to fly to Mars.

“We have identified an opportunity that will allow Australia’s expertise to align with NASA’s exploration capabilities. And it will be a great partnership. “

When asked for more information, Palermo said: “Stay tuned”.