Germany officially launched a new military space command center on Tuesday, which it will use to observe other countries’ activities and track hazardous space junk.
During the inauguration at the German Space Situational Awareness Centre in Uedem, Defense Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer said that the new center is designed to respond to the “increasing significance of space for our state’s ability to function.”
Furthermore, she explained that establishing a space station could benefit German citizens and heighten utilization by the armed forces of space-based data, services, and products.
“It is an important step towards strengthening the ability to act in the dimension of space,” Kramp-Karrenbauer remarked. “Our civilian and military satellites have long since become a resource, without which nothing works. As always, when a resource becomes vital, its security becomes an issue.”
The German military currently has six reconnaissance satellites in orbit. Space operations in the country “are always defensive” to protect Germany’s people and infrastructure, Kramp-Karrenbauer said.
Addressing Space-Based Threats
Germany’s move to strengthen its space security comes amid growing concern about Russian and Chinese military advances, including a noticeable surge in satellite launches.
Military experts believe the two countries are capable of waging war in space. This development has led the US, France, Britain, and Germany to establish space commands to address this potential threat.
“Space has become a critical infrastructure that we need to secure,” Kramp-Karrenbauer emphasized.
In addition to tracking space junk and monitoring the activities of other countries, the space command center is expected to protect satellites that provide the military with vital communications services and surveillance data.