Asteroid Day was co-founded by astrophysicist and famed musician Dr. Brian May of the rock group QUEEN; Apollo 9 Astronaut Rusty Schweickart; Filmmaker Grig Richters; and B612 President Danica Remy, to promote awareness and provide knowledge to the general public about the importance of asteroids in our solar system history, and the role they play in our solar system today. Events are scheduled leading up to 30 June, the date of the largest asteroid impact of Earth in recorded history (Tunguska).
Senate and House committees held hearings on consecutive days last week about space situational awareness (SSA) and space traffic management (STM), i.e., the ability to accurately track objects in Earth orbit and to avoid dangerous collisions that could knock out satellites and even render entire orbits unusable.
The overall conclusion was that, although progress is being made, we’re not nearly as aware as we need to be as orbital debris poses an ever bigger problem and companies prepare to launch tens of thousands of new satellites.
“Near Earth space is geo-politically contested, it’s commercially contested and it’s in dire need of environmental protection because it is a finite resource,” said Moriba Jah, an associate professor of astronautics at the University of Texas.
Continuing our look at the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission’s 2019 Report to Congress, we examine how China is seeking to shape the governance of space activities. [Full Report]
by Douglas Messier Managing Editor
China’s actions in asserting sovereignty over the disputed South China Sea could serve as a model by which that nation would claim extraterrestrial resources and consolidate its control over key space assets, a new report to the U.S. Congress warned.
“Contrary to international norms governing the exploration and commercial exploitation of space, statements from senior Chinese officials signal Beijing’s belief in its right to claim use of space-based resources in the absence of a clear legal framework specifically regulating mining in space,” according to the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission’s 2019 report.
LUXEMBOURG (Luxembourg Space Agency PR) — Today, at the margins of the New Space Europe Conference, Ms. Paulette Lenert, Minister for Development Cooperation and Humanitarian Affairs and Ms. Simonetta di Pippo, Director of United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) signed a funding agreement to support UNOOSA’s new “Space Law for New Space Actors” project.
The “Space Law for New Space Actors” project will offer UN Member States tailored capacity building to facilitate their drafting of national space legislation and/or national space policies in line with international space law, promoting the long-term sustainability of outer space activities. Such capacity building will support in particular new and emerging space-faring nations to conduct space activities in a responsible and sustainable manner.
President Donald Trump tweeted today that he planned to nominate former Aerospace Corporation Chairwoman Barbara Barrett to replace Heather Wilson as U.S. Air Force secretary.
Barrett, 68, is a businesswoman , politician and former diplomat. Her business career includes serving as: the founding chairwoman of Valley Bank of Arizona; a partner in a Phoenix law firm; and as executives in two Fortune 500 companies.
In 1994, she ran unsuccessfully for governor of Arizona as a Republican. Barrett served as U.S. ambassador to Finland in 2008-09 under President George W. Bush. She also served as a senior advisor to the U.S. Mission to the United Nations.
Barrett was the first civilian female to land in an F/A-18 Hornet jet fighter on an aircraft carrier. She trained in Russia as an astronaut and was the backup to Canadian space tourist Guy Laliberte for the Soyuz TM-16 flight to the International Space Station in 2009.
Barrett also served as deputty administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration and as vice chairwoman of the U.S. Civil Aeronautics Board.
TOKYO (JAXA PR) — JAXA and the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) launched a three year “KiboCUBE” programme in September 2015, which offered developing countries the opportunity to deploy cube satellites from the Japanese Experiment Module “Kibo” on the International Space Station (ISS).
SPARKS, Nev., September 27, 2016 (SNC PR) – Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) and the United Nations Office of Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) and have announced details of the first-ever United Nations space mission at the International Astronautical Congress today in Guadalajara, Mexico. The dedicated Dream Chaser® Mission is targeted at providing developing countries the opportunity to develop and fly microgravity payloads for an extended duration in orbit; however, all United Nations Member States will be able to propose payloads for the mission.
BlackSky and the United Nations Plan to Utilize Data and Images Collected from Small Satellites in Revolutionary Ways
SEATTLE – April 28, 2016 – BlackSky, a satellite-imaging-as-a-service company, today announced that it has established an official partnership with the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR). UNITAR, created in 1965, is an autonomous body within the United Nations that was formed to develop capacities to enhance global decision-making and support country-level action for shaping a better future.
ABU DHABI, UAE (UAE Space Agency PR) — A high level delegation led by HE Dr Khalifa Mohammed Al Rumaithi, Chairman of the UAE Space Agency board and the agency’s Director General, HE Dr Mohammad Nasser Al Ahbabi visited key stakeholders within the space sector in several European countries. The meetings aimed to strengthen the framework of cooperation and partnership between the UAE Space Agency and important stakeholders across Europe.
The Chairman, Director General and delegation discussed opportunities of cooperation with various institutions working in the sector, in order to exchange knowledge and experience in space technology and science. This is in line with the UAE government’s vision to build a solid scientific base for developing the UAE space industry.
KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FL/GENEVA, SWITZERLAND. (July 8, 2014) – The Center for the Advancement of Science in Space (CASIS) and the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) today announced a collaboration on technology applications that will aim to develop and deploy a next-generation high-resolution, multi-band hyperspectral imaging system onboard the International Space Station (ISS).
The United Nations is developing a plan to keep hazardous asteroids from hitting Earth. Meanwhile, the Association of Space Explorers has urged that the UN and national governments take more actions to address this threat.
New York, New York (ASE PR) — At an Oct. 25 public event at New York’s American Museum of Natural History, the Association of Space Explorers (ASE), a professional society of astronauts and cosmonauts, issued a challenge to the global community to take the next vital steps to confront the threat from dangerous asteroids. The ASE Committee on Near-Earth Objects statement follows the United Nations General Assembly adoption of a suite of proposals to create an international decision-making mechanism for planetary asteroid defense.
Space News is reporting the United Nations Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (UN COPUOS) is calling for the development of an international network of ground-based telescope to to track potentially dangerous asteroids and other objects.
The NEO study group recommended coordinating investments already made or under way in ground telescopes and the occasional satellite and sending the NEO data to a central clearinghouse, which would then forward them to national space and civil protection agencies as needed. The study group was chaired by Sergio Camacho, secretary general of the Regional Center for Space Science and Technology Education for Latin America and the Caribbean, which is based in Mexico….