Global Counterspace Capabilities Report


Current Version:

2024 Executive Summary

(Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Japanese, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish)

2024 Full Report (English) 

Previous versions:

2023 Executive Summary (English, Spanish, French, Russian, Chinese, Arabic)

2023 Full Report (English)

Revision history

2022 Executive Summary (English, Spanish, French, Russian, Chinese, Arabic)

2022 Full Report (English)

        Revision history

2021 Executive Summary (EnglishSpanish, French, Russian, Chinese) 2021 Full Report (English)
2020 Executive Summary (English, Spanish, French) 2020 Full Report (English)
2019 Executive Summary (English) 2019 Full Report (English)
2018 Executive Summary (English)  2018 Full Report (English)


Space security has become an increasingly salient policy issue. Over the last several years, there has been growing concern from multiple governments over the reliance on vulnerable space capabilities for national security, and the corresponding proliferation of offensive counterspace capabilities that could be used to disrupt, deny, degrade, or destroy space systems. This in turn has led to increased rhetoric from some countries about the need to prepare for future conflicts on Earth to extend into space, and calls from some corners to increase the development of offensive counterspace capabilities and put in place more aggressive policies and postures.

We feel strongly that a more open and public debate on these issues is urgently needed. Space is not the sole domain of militaries and intelligence services. Our global society and economy is increasingly dependent on space capabilities, and a future conflict in space could have massive, long-term negative repercussions that are felt here on Earth. Even testing of these capabilities could have long-lasting negative repercussions for the space environment, and all who operate there. The public should be as aware of the developing threats and risks of different policy options as would be the case for other national security issues in the air, land, and sea domains.

The 2024 Report

The 2024 edition of the report assesses the current and near-term future capabilities for each country, along with their potential military utility. Countries covered in this report are divided up into those who have conducted debris-causing anti-satellite tests (the United States, Russia, China, India) and those who are developing counterspace technologies (Australia, France, Japan, Iran, Israel, North Korea, South Korea, and the United Kingdom). It covers events and activities through February 2024.

Major Updates in 2024:

  • Update on orbital debris still in space from ASAT testing by the US, Russia, China, and India (3,133 pieces out of 6,863 total created)
  • Recent missions by the US X-37B, Chinese Shenlong, and Indian Pushpak spaceplanes and the striking similarities in their missions and capabilities and other countries’ concerns over their use as weapons
  • Summary of the new US counterspace and space operations doctrine and space elements of the updated Unified Command Plan
  • Launch of a second Russian “Luch” satellite to GEO, which appears to be conducting RPO for intelligence/signals collection mission like its predecessor
  • Likely new Chinese DA-ASAT test in April 2023, which may have hit a ballistic target but did not created additional orbital debris
  • Added new details about the command and control of China’s offensive counterspace capabilities
  • Details on the US, Australia, and UK partnership in the DARC deep space radar program
  • Mention of the US, Australia, France, Japan, South Korea, and the UK DA-ASAT testing moratorium pledges
  • Added Israel for the  first time, with a focus on their potential DA-ASAT capability (based on their Arrow-3 midcourse missile defense system) and broad use of EW during the war in Gaza
  • Details on the French plans for the FLAMHE program to place laser-armed satellites in GEO and BLOOMLASE program to develop ground-based laser dazzlers
  • Significant increase in GPS jamming/spoofing, particularly in the Eastern Baltic and Middle East
  • Additional Russian cyber attacks on Starlink and Ukrainian hacktivist cyber attacks on the Russian Dozor-Teleport satcom system as part of the war in Ukraine
  • New US and European “hack-a-thon” contests that involve attacking purpose-built operational satellites in orbit

Global Counterspace Capabilities © 2024 by Secure World Foundation is licensed under Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International. To view a copy of this license, visit

Additional Information

The following links include the core data underlying the counterspace report and/or additional resources to help visualize and understand the report's findings and data.

History of ASAT Testing in Space (Google Sheet)

History of Robotic Rendezvous and Proximity Operations in Space (Google Sheet)

Animations of debris clouds from historical ASAT tests in space (Youtube)

Code used to generate the Gabbard plots (Github)






Last updated on May 16, 2024