By Aman Pannu
SPACE SECURITY: A GLOBAL CHALLENGE FOR A GLOBAL INDUSTRY
Space Security and its Role
Thought leaders around the globe are voraciously debating the impact of a 9 billion plus population on planet Earth by 2050. The complexity of meeting the needs of a large and diverse population is driving the search for innovative technologies and applications. Space is emerging as the lead innovator, by facilitating new technology and applications to confront evolving issues and opportunities. Almost a third of the countries (there are 195 listed countries as of 2011) have a satellite (at the very least) orbiting the Earth, even more so, most of the countries use space based applications.
Figure 1: Satellite Manufacturing (World) Forecast 2011-2020
Having weathered the economic crisis more strongly than most industries, Frost & Sullivan research suggests the space industry is forecasted to close the decade with approximately 10-15 percent more satellites (900 plus) launched in comparison to the last decade. Government (Civil and Military) projects will continue to drive demand (68 percent), however commercial satellites is forecasted to increase its share by more than 5 percent (2011-2020) over the last decade.
Military as well as Commercial and Civil end-users rely on Space as a critical element of global information infrastructure supporting frontline operations for them. The role of space is no longer limited to ground connectivity, both in air and maritime domains. Space ensures seamless connectivity in the most challenging conditions, such as that seen in the Haiti disaster, and most recently in Japan.