Cold War Weapons | Anti-Satellite Weapons: Episode 1

The Cold War boosted the development of the most sophisticated weapons. And after the first satellite launch, space was perceived as a crucial theatre in a probable war between the two superpowers.

In the 1950s, many US reconnaissance aircraft were designed to monitor Soviet borders and even territory. However, the USSR’s technologies eventually allowed for shooting the spies down. This was the reason the competition between the nuclear superpowers entered the next phase of surveillance using spy satellites. American scientists launched the “Keyhole” project and the “Discovery” satellite.

The US also developed weapon systems designated for warfare in and from space, prompting the USSR to launch satellite hunters and speed up the work on orbital reconnaissance satellites. The Soviet “Zenit” satellite was terrifying for the Americans as this recon equipped satellite could not be distinguished from the one carrying astronauts.

This episode of Cold War Weapons talks about the sophisticated Soviet and American projects and explains how satellites worked to choose potential targets for nuclear attacks.