Australia is forming Space Command, aimed at protecting it and its allies’ interest in space.
Once the domain of scientists and dreamers, space is increasingly becoming an important arena for governments and militaries around the world, each taking measures to protect their interests in space. The US, for example, created Space Force as a sixth branch of its military.
Australia is taking a similar, but slightly different, approach. According to ABC News, the country plans to launch Space Command late this year. Rather than being a completely separate branch of the military, however, Space Command is likely to be a joint command operating across the Australian Defence Force.
At the same time, Australia has no intention of developing offensive capabilities to take out other countries’ satellites.
“Space is a war-fighting domain but we’re not going to militarise space,” said Air Marshal Hupfeld.
“What we will be looking to do if there is someone who doesn’t (follow international rules) is point it out,” he said.
ABC News reports that Air Vice-Marshal Catherine Roberts, current Head of Air Force Capability, has been tapped to lead the new Space Command.
“The first person I remember ever having a material impact on my ambition was Neil Armstrong,” she said.
“In 1969, as a three-year-old, I watched on in awe as Lieutenant Armstrong descended the ladder of the lunar lander and uttered the first words ever spoken on the Moon.
“It was an incredible moment for humanity and millions of aspiring engineers that were probably created at that moment — I was no different.”