UK Space Power Doctrine Report Released5th Sep 2022
The “UK Space Power” publication was released on 1st September. This vision for UK military doctrine has been labelled part of a broader, whole-of-government approach. It focuses on the space domain.
The 91-page public document provides a basis for understanding how the space domain is being used in a military context. Plus, it outlines in general terms the role the UK military does and will play in terms of ensuring space is protected from foreign threats.
Space infrastructure is vital to national infrastructure
The UK government has outlined how space infrastructure and its assets are linked to vital national infrastructure. They state their compromise or loss would greatly impair the integrity, delivery, or availability of key services.
The importance of space being a global domain
One of the key messages the doctrine focuses on is the fact that space is a global domain. It also stresses that commercial, civil, and military activities are all intertwined.
The following is an extract from UK Space Power:
“Space power capabilities, or enabling capabilities in other operational domains, can contribute to deterrence but must form part of a wider, whole-of-government strategy.
“Space offers political choice through its ubiquity and pervasiveness but is not solely a military, or even state, endeavor.
“Non-state actors increasingly own a stake in the development and operation of capabilities. Partnerships with civil, industry, commercial and academic entities are therefore essential to increase resilience, understand the progress of technology, and develop further opportunities for deterrence.”
Complexity in space has dramatically increased
One of the most noteworthy takeaways from the publication is the statement that complexity in space has dramatically increased as a consequence of the blurring of the lines between commercial, government, military, and civilian.
The UK military doctrine outlines how commercial considerations, licensing, and international collaboration makes liability, responsibility, and ownership murky.