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Activity title

The Space Domain and NATO Operations: A Critical S&T Review

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Systems Concepts and Integration

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Awaiting Publication

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ASAT, C2, GPS, IST, Jamming, Lasers, Radar, SATCOM, Satellites, SATNAV, Space, Space Domain Awareness, Space Environment, Space Launch, Space Weather


NATO is significantly dependent upon space services to conduct its military missions and related responsibilities. The results of the 2013 SCI-238 Specialists Meeting on NATO Space Dependencies validated that assertion and identified several areas for enhancement of the resilience of NATO’s use of space to ensure comprehensive mission success. The breadth of the anticipated solutions and concepts for more resilience NATO space capabilities can significantly benefit from the extensive base of technical experience resident in several of the STO Panels’ membership as well as that to be found in other NATO organizations such as ACT, ACO, NCIA, and JAPCC. It has been nearly five years since a meeting of space experts from through the NATO Alliance have come together (SCI-268-SM) to develop a shared awareness of NATO’s future needs for space capabilities and the means for instilling an appropriate level of affordable resilience. Such a meeting provides the basis for the promoting a shared awareness objective as well as identifying the most appropriate technical investments for NATO to consider underwriting in its coalition program of work under the stewardship of the STO. The SM will encompass the presence of operators, planners and space thinkers. This community will exchange information and feed into the S&T community so to assure that the work done by the space SMEs is coherent with NATO needs and requirements, even if not explicitly stated through official documents.


The objectives of this activity include: 1. Developing a shared awareness of NATO’s future space capability needs to enhance Alliance forces under increasing stressing operational environments (threats and environmental risks) 2. Identification of critical scientific and technical challenges that would benefit from focused NATO S&T attention via STO technical activities; including cross-panel collaborative efforts that maximize the broad technical depth of expertise across the STO panels 3. Identification and development of critically important relationships among the NATO technical, operational and policy communities involved or responsible for NATO’s success in the space domain 4. Promotion of a NATO-wide community of interest focused on NATO’s future operational and technical requirements to maximize successful endeavours in the space domain.


The following topics will be addressed in this activity: 1. NATO’s future operational needs anticipated to require space capabilities and the nature of such capabilities 2. Emergent space system, platform and application concepts and associated technologies (disaggregated architecture, NATO responsive space concepts, on-orbit systems for repair, refurbish and protection) 3. Materiel and non-material concepts for improving the resilience of NATO space capabilities 4. Space mission areas including SATNAV, SATCOM, ISR, Missile Warning, Space and Terrestrial Weather/Environmental Sensing, On-Orbit Space Servicing, etc. 5. All segments and elements of the Space Domain including the space, ground, cyber and link segments 6. Military operator/user applications including communication, intelligence, targeting, warning, tracking, etc.

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