South Korea and US Join Forces to Combat North Korean Space Threats

Written by Camilla Jessen

Apr.24 - 2024 11:16 AM CET

Photo: Yeongsik Im / Shutterstock.com
Photo: Yeongsik Im / Shutterstock.com
The United States and South Korea conducted exercises to combat GPS jamming from North Korea.

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The United States and South Korea have conducted joint exercises to prepare for and combat GPS jamming and other space-based threats potentially originating from North Korea.

According to the South Korean news agency Yonhap, these exercises are part of a broader effort to strengthen military coordination and enhance satellite security in response to North Korea's growing technological capabilities.

Joint Space Operations

The joint exercises were part of the Korea Flight Training (KFT), an annual large-scale event held by the Air Force. This year, for the first time, an integrated space operations group participated in the KFT, which took place at the Gunsan Air Base, 178 kilometers south of Seoul, from April 12.

The collaboration involved the U.S. Space Force and the South Korean Air Force Space Operations Squadron, formed in December 2022 to oversee space operations and monitor North Korea's space activities. The team's objectives included simulating scenarios to thwart satellite jamming and improve the accuracy of GPS systems to counter potential threats from North Korea.

Countering GPS Jamming

During the exercises, allied forces practiced techniques to identify and respond to GPS jamming attempts. They simulated scenarios in which U.S. military satellites detected and relayed the coordinates of jamming attacks to South Korean and U.S. fighter jets, allowing them to precisely target the sources of interference.

The exercises aimed to test and refine the allies' capabilities to ensure effective communication and cooperation in real-world scenarios involving space-based threats. By integrating data from U.S. military satellites, the forces could increase their situational awareness and response accuracy.

The joint exercises also included discussions on integrating South Korean satellites into operational missions.

South Korea launched its first military intelligence satellite into orbit in December 2022, with a second launch earlier this month. By 2025, South Korea plans to deploy a total of five military satellites to enhance monitoring and reconnaissance of North Korea's activities.

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