Public health is on our minds: Here’s how it applies to outer space

Jessica West Featured, Space Security

The number of threats to the security of outer space is growing. Reports on global counter-space capabilities released at the end of March by the Secure World Foundation and the Center for Strategic and International Studies indicate that the range of capabilities that can interfere with and even destroy satellites is increasing, as is covert on-orbit activity. New initiatives such as the U.S. Space …

How to keep outer space weapons-free

Jessica West Current Publication, Featured, Ploughshares Monitor, Space Security

The history of arms control in outer space reads like a success story. Outer space is one of the few domains of human activity in which the focus has been on prevention. Although military satellites that provide communications, remote sensing, navigation, and timing services once dominated space and continue to provide essential military services, their operations have long been considered peaceful. Those of us working in space security say that space is “militarized but not weaponized.”

The future of war: Missiles and space as seen by the United States in 2019

Jessica West Americas, Conventional Weapons, Current Publication, Emerging Technologies, Space Security

Two new policy documents released in the United States cast light on what future war could look like, especially the central and entwined roles of missiles and outer space.

Preserving the peace

Jessica West Current Publication, Space Security

A new space race is on. Symbolized by the historic landing of China’s robotic explorer on the far side of the Moon, the goal this time is to create a permanent human presence on the Moon and beyond.

Looking ahead: Trends shaping space security in 2019

Jessica West Featured, News, Space Security

The world has entered a Second Space Age, marked by an intensification of our interactions and reach into outer space. A core part of the international Space Security Index project, managed by Project Ploughshares, is to look holistically at how states, companies, and people around the world access and make use of this domain. Looking to the year ahead, five …

It’s back: Space-based missile defence

Jessica West Featured, Space Security

Like boomerangs, some bad ideas keep coming back. Space-based missile defence has been pursued intermittently by the United States since the launch of the Space Age. Now, under Donald Trump, America is once again dreaming that it can protect itself from nuclear-armed missiles by deploying a “shield” of interceptors in outer space. Closely resembling President Reagan’s derided “Star Wars,” this …