The Indian armed forces plan to conduct the country’s first ever stimulated space warfare exercise this week, The Times of India has reported.
The report states that the tri-service integrated defence staff, or the IDS, plans on conducting two-day IndSpaceEx with all the stakeholders involved on July 25 and 26.
The exercise, the report states, aims to assess “imminent threats” to the nation beyond earth. It also plans on drafting a joint space doctrine for future battles.
“PM Narendra Modi said the A-Sat test in March was conducted to make India stronger and more secure as well as further peace and harmony. In line with this vision, IndSpaceEx is being conducted to identify key challenges and shortfalls if a conflict escalates to the space dimension. A leading IIT has also been engaged to work on the potential solutions,” said a senior official.
Meanwhile with China developing a wide array of A-Sat weapons, both kinetic in the shape of co-orbital killer satellites and direct ascent missiles as well as non-kinetic ones like lasers and electro-magnetic pulse weapons, officials say India has no option but to develop deterrence capabilities to ensure no adversary can threaten its assets in outer-space.
The A-Sat test as well as the recent approval for the tri-Service Defence Space Agency, even though the armed forces were demanding a full-fledged Space Command, signifies the crossing of that self-imposed threshold for developing offensive space capabilities.
“There is the need to explore effective tactical, operational and strategic exploitation of the final frontier of warfare. We cannot keep twiddling our thumbs while China zooms ahead. We cannot match China but must have capabilities to protect our space assets,” another official was reported as saying.