China launches satellite-crushing weapon following hypersonic nuke test

China sent a new satellite into space on Sunday using a questionable technology, Americans have said could potentially destroy other satellites.

As Beijing launched their new craft, the Shijian 21 satellite, into orbit this weekend, Washington has warned that it could be a satellite-crushing weapon even though Chinese authorities claimed the object was blasted to “test technologies in order to neutralise space debris”.

Moreover, the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corp confirmed that the launch of their long March 3B which took off from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center was a “success” within an hour of being sent off.

The satellite reportedly orbited the Earth at high speed before coming down on a target which analysts have said “it missed by some 24 miles”.

Specialists who have based themselves on that information have said that the craft appeared to be similar to a “Cold War-era Soviet nuclear system called FOBS”, which has been developed to bypass nuclear defences.

According to the US, the event was in reality part of China’s plan to achieve “superiority through space-attack systems”.

Despite the US’ concerns, Beijing has acknowledged one of the tests, but authorities opposed the accusation that they had launched a weapon.

China has also claimed that the satellite was in reality, for civilian purposes.

Nevertheless, americans’ speculation comes as no surprise, seeing Xi Jinping – a Chinese politician who has been serving as General Secretary of the Chinese Communist Party and has served as the Chairman of the Central Military Commission since 2012 – made worrying assertions this week.

While attending a military conference in China’s capital, the 68-year-old politician told scientists to “break new ground” in creating new weapons to develop a “world class army”.

According to the Chinese state-run press agency, Xinhua, Zhang Youxia, the vice chairman of China’s central military commission, has said that China should “pursue self-reliance in technology” and make an “all-out push to accelerate modernisation”.

According to Space news, “no details of the satellite or its capabilities were made available”, which was coupled with the fact that “space debris mitigation technologies are “dual-use,” having both civilian and military applications”.

Consequently, the satellite’s launch is likely to attract more interest and scrutiny internationally.

The craft’s launch follows hypersonic orbital nuke tests that the Chinese government is thought to have conducted on July 27 and on August 13 this year.

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