Where did the idea of Operationally Responsive Space originate? You might imagine that the idea was born during the First Gulf War, (sometimes called the First Space War), where use was made of strategic space systems to support operations. It was apparent, though, that strategic systems with very small fields of view and long revisit times were not well suited to operational reconnaissance. Other limitations of these strategic systems included a tasking system not suited for tactical timelines; significant data downlink requirements, making it difficult to deliver data into the theatre; a large in-theatre “footprint” for intelligence analysts; and lack of “command assurance” that the requested collection would not be pre-empted by higher national priorities, for which reason field commanders were unwilling to place reliance on them for critical operations. It is tempting to think that these limitations inspired system designers to conceive of constellations of smaller, more affordable satellites with wider fields of view.
"Operationally Responsive Space: Past, Present and Future,"
Space and Defense: Vol. 5:
0, Article 6.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.unomaha.edu/spaceanddefense/vol5/iss0/6
Asian Studies Commons, Aviation and Space Education Commons, Defense and Security Studies Commons, Eastern European Studies Commons, International Relations Commons, Leadership Studies Commons, Near and Middle Eastern Studies Commons, Nuclear Engineering Commons, Science and Technology Studies Commons, Space Vehicles Commons