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15uliane
Post  Post subject: Space Military?  |  Posted: Thu Aug 18, 2011 1:31 pm
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War in space has been a main topic in sci-fi for a hundred years, but how likely is it that the world will actually have space militaries? It is not easy to get into space, and although we already have anti-satellite missiles and reconnaisance satellites, we're nowhere near "star wars".


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Falconer360
Post  Post subject: Re: Space Military?  |  Posted: Mon Aug 22, 2011 5:33 pm
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Fighting in space would be very boring though. The space battles in Star Wars were only cool because they completely disregarded physics.

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DrRocket
Post  Post subject: Re: Space Military?  |  Posted: Tue Aug 23, 2011 2:43 am
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15uliane wrote:
War in space has been a main topic in sci-fi for a hundred years, but how likely is it that the world will actually have space militaries? It is not easy to get into space, and although we already have anti-satellite missiles and reconnaisance satellites, we're nowhere near "star wars".


Space-based weapons have been studied. Actual deployment would violate treaties. Treaties have been violate before, but to do so might well provoke a war. It is very difficult to defend against pre-deployed weapons in space short of pre-emptively destroying them.

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15uliane
Post  Post subject: Re: Space Military?  |  Posted: Tue Aug 23, 2011 2:41 pm
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I thought the treaties only barred nuclear weapons?


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x(x-y)
Post  Post subject: Re: Space Military?  |  Posted: Thu Aug 25, 2011 2:09 pm
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15uliane wrote:
I thought the treaties only barred nuclear weapons?


Nope, "using space" to attack the opposition in a conflict is barred by treaties. I wonder then, are most (conventional) ICBMs illegal due to them being launched into space before targeting objects?

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15uliane
Post  Post subject: Re: Space Military?  |  Posted: Mon Aug 29, 2011 11:48 pm
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I did some shallow wikipedia digging and came up with this:
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Among its principles, it bars States Parties to the Treaty from placing nuclear weapons or any other weapons of mass destruction in orbit of Earth, installing them on the Moon or any other celestial body, or to otherwise station them in outer space. It exclusively limits the use of the Moon and other celestial bodies to peaceful purposes and expressly prohibits their use for testing weapons of any kind, conducting military maneuvers, or establishing military bases, installations, and fortifications (Art.IV). However, the Treaty does not prohibit the placement of conventional weapons in orbit.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Space_treaty

That was the only ratified space treaty I could find in my shortsighted search.


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DrRocket
Post  Post subject: Re: Space Military?  |  Posted: Tue Aug 30, 2011 12:38 am
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x(x-y) wrote:
15uliane wrote:
I thought the treaties only barred nuclear weapons?


Nope, "using space" to attack the opposition in a conflict is barred by treaties. I wonder then, are most (conventional) ICBMs illegal due to them being launched into space before targeting objects?


There are no current conventional ICBMs. They have been considered for "prompt strike", but none have been fully developed or deployed. One major problem is that at launch and during transit a conventional weapon is indistinguishable from a nuclear weapon and a launch would incur the risk of a nuclear counterattack before the warheads actually detonated.

Use of space-based conventional weapons, even if it were allowed by treaty would terribly cost-ineffective. Even a conventional warhead on an ICBM would be justified on for extremely high value targets. An ICBM costs several million dollars plus upkeep.

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