C4iSR: Joint & Common Equipment

Pentagon budget 2020: Space-based Kill Assessment launches ahead

12 March 2019

The US Missile Defense Agency (MDA) requested USD27.6 million for its Space-based Kill Assessment (SKA) programme that is meant to report on the success or failure of individual interceptor missions.

SKA is an experiment in using a network of fast-frame-rate and infrared sensors hosted on commercial satellites. MDA had requested USD16.5 million in fiscal year 2019 (FY 2019) for the project.

MDA deputy director Rear Admiral Jon Hill declined to provide numbers of deployed SKA sensors but said they were deployed throughout 2018. The sensors are designed to detect explosions in space and then provide a ‘kill assessment’ capability so the missile defence system would know if its combat intercepts were successful or not.

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