Diplomats and other experts see signs of progress at the United Nations on addressing space sustainability but caution it may will take many years before any sort of binding agreement emerges.
The U.S. military will take space sustainability factors into account should it have to respond to an attack on its satellites, a Space Force official said Sept. 16.
The United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs is poised to assist the international community in tackling the challenges posed by an increasingly diverse set of actors launching and operating spacecraft.
The visibility and attention space missions often get work to the industry’s advantage, from helping to attract top engineering talent to top investment dollars. But it also comes with heightened scrutiny that risks tripping up young space companies rushing to the commercial market.
Ensuring that small satellites can communicate not only within their own constellations but within a broader ecosystem is one of the primary challenges cited by Lt. Gen. John Shaw, U.S. Space Command deputy commander, in an Aug. 9 keynote at the 35th Small Satellite conference.
LeoLabs and the New Zealand Space Agency (NZSA) are working together to develop a cloud-based software platform for monitoring space activity.
Safe deployment of satellites is going to be increasingly difficult in the absence of globally accepted rules and incentives to make space a sustainable environment, industry executives said.
It’s past time for a multilateral agreement on the principles governing space traffic management and sustainability, writes Jennifer A. Manner.
As the Biden administration looks to rejoin international initiatives and reemphasize major global initiatives, it is critical that the incoming administration recognizes and recommits to the role that space technology plays in these efforts.
With satellite operators doing a poor job complying with guidelines to deorbit their satellites, incentives or even regulation may be inevitable to address concerns about orbital debris and satellite collisions.
ESA said Sept. 2 it maneuvered one of its Earth science satellites to avoid a potential collision with a SpaceX Starlink satellite, the first time the agency said it’s had to maneuver to avoid a satellite associated with a broadband megaconstellation.
The failure of at least five percent of the first batch of SpaceX Starlink satellites has put a spotlight on the growing concerns that satellite megaconstellations could litter low Earth orbit with hundreds of dead satellites.
The approval of set of space sustainability guidelines by a United Nations committee has been widely endorsed by the global space community, even while questions remain on how those guidelines can be turned into more binding rules.
The World Economic Forum has selected a consortium of companies, universities and agencies to develop a system to rate the sustainability of space systems, one that its backers hope will encourage good behavior in space.