Jamming enemy communication has been one of the foremost desires of Armed forces around the globe. However, the US Army taking the lead once again has unveiled high altitude systems that can fly over countries and continents, effectively blocking their communication.
The HELEIOS or the High-Altitude Extended-Range Long Endurance Intelligence Observation system is set to be a network of balloons that will wander at an altitude of 60,000 feet above the ground. The system would not reach space but would reach significant altitude to carry on with the surveillance.
It operates like a spy satellite, although it is not one. The army would be capable of jamming all communication that they desire with the help of these balloons. The enemy communication and its smooth transfer of info would be problematic with the balloons in place. Laser weapon systems may give a little more adrenaline rush in comparison to the HELEIOS. Keeping in view the space warfare’s developing scenario blocking communication could be key in future battles.
“The idea is blanketing the deep area with low-cost attributable sensors to enable deep sensing and deep effects,” Col. Daniel Holland, the Army capability manager for electronic warfare, explained at a Tuesday presentation attended by C4ISRNET. “Essentially, our question is can we get the payload light enough to fly on this penetrating, high-altitude, attributable platform, get close enough to place our effects on the target, likely with a special purpose electronic attack or RF-enabled cyber.”
The only thing holding back the active deployment of these is the technical and logistical issues and the question to which the answer seems to be not available at the moment, How to control free-floating balloons? Issues like “is it a good idea to put cyber warfare balloons in the sky?” or “what will any other country think about this?” don’t seem to be on the list of concerns, though.
Who would not like to add a balloon loaded with a state-of-the-art payload into their arsenal? This addition also puts affirmation to the fact that space is now an active deployment field. Also, it is cool if you can bring down digital communication in your enemy’s sphere.