How successful are Russia’s attempts to cut Ukraine off from satellite communications?

Russia is trying to deprive Ukrainian troops of access to Starlink satellites. The occupying forces use a number of signal jamming devices mounted on a variety of automotive equipment to do this. However, according to experts, they have not been successful so far.

Starlink satellite. Source: MADS CLAUS RASMUSSEN/Getty Images

Attempts to jam Starlink

Foreign experts analyzed Russia’s attempts to jam or intercept signals from the Starlink satellite system during the war in Ukraine. Recently, an article about this appeared in Business Insider. The authors invited Brian Weeden, director of the international non-profit organization Secure World Foundation, as an expert.

The use of Starlink satellite communications by the Armed Forces of Ukraine at one time became possible due to the actions of the company’s management, committed at the beginning of a large-scale invasion. They are used at the front in a variety of ways, including drone control. And that is why the troops of the occupiers all the time do not give up trying to do something with them.

It is extremely difficult to do this. The satellites are in low orbit, the signal from them is powerful, and the response time of the device on earth is short. The devices are very small and mobile. And the signal is well protected by encryption. Therefore, it is extremely difficult to disable this system.

However, the Russians in their military strategy have always relied on the ability to deprive the enemy of radio communication. In particular, at the very beginning of the invasion, they already tried to disrupt communications in the Ukrainian army by attacking the system of the Viasat provider, which it used. There have also been repeated attempts to jam GPS.

What do Russians use?

There is very little specific information about what exactly the Russians are doing to deprive Ukrainians of Starlink. In general, their efforts are becoming more effective and efficient. However, in general, they did not achieve their goal.

However, the arsenal of devices they use is really wide. First of all, they are trying to use the R-330Zh Zhitel radio interference system and Bylina-M satellite communications suppression against Starlink. Both of them are mounted on the basis of trucks.

Another system that Russians widely use is the Krasukha-4 electronic warfare system. It is capable of interfering with the operation of not only communication systems, but also radars at a distance of up to 300 km. In addition, sources indicate that they are trying to test the Tobol system at the front.

In addition to the fact that these attempts cannot completely prevent the Ukrainian Armed Forces from using the Internet, they also make it possible to accurately localize these complexes with their subsequent defeat. An example here is the destruction of the Tirada electronic warfare complex.

According to

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