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Space policy of the United States

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Last Updated: 02 July 2021

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Director OF OFFICE OF SCIENCE and TECHNOLOGY POLICY. Deputy ASSISTANT TO PRESIDENT FOR HOMELAND SECURITY and COUNTERTERRORISM. Section 1. Policy. For decades, United States has effectively reaped benefits of operating in SPACE TO enhance our National SECURITY, civil, and commercial sectors. Our society now depends on SPACE technologies and SPACE - base capabilities FOR communications, navigation, weather forecasting, and much more. Give significance OF SPACE activities, United States considers continuing unfettered access TO and freedom TO operate in SPACE OF vital interest TO advance SECURITY, economic prosperity, and scientific knowledge OF the Nation. Today, SPACE is becoming increasingly congest and contest, and that trend presents challenge FOR safety, stability, and sustainability of US SPACE Operations. Already, Department OF Defense tracks over 20 000 objects in SPACE, and that number will increase dramatically as NEW, more capable sensors come online and are able TO detect smaller objects. Dod publishes a catalog OF SPACE Objects and makes notifications of potential conjunctions. As the number of SPACE Objects increase, however, this limited Traffic Management activity and architecture will become inadequate. At the same time, contested nature of SPACE is increasing demand FOR DOD to focus on protecting and defending US SPACE assets and interests. The future SPACE operating environment will also be shaped by a significant increase in volume and diversity of commercial activity in SPACE. Emerging Commercial ventures such as satellite servicing, debris removal, in - SPACE manufacturing, and tourism, as well as NEW technologies enabling small satellites and very large constellations OF satellites, are increasingly outpacing efforts TO develop and implement Government Policies and processes TO address these NEW Activities. To maintain US leadership in SPACE, we must develop a NEW APPROACH TO SPACE Traffic Management that addresses current and future operational risks. This NEW APPROACH must set priorities FOR SPACE Situational Awareness and STM innovation in SCIENCE and TECHNOLOGY, incorporate National SECURITY considerations, encourage growth of US Commercial SPACE sector, establish update STM Architecture, and promote SPACE Safety Standards and Best Practices across the international community. The United States recognizes that spaceflight safety is a global challenge and will continue TO encourage safe and responsible behavior in SPACE while emphasizing the need for international transparency and STM Data Sharing. Through this National POLICY FOR STM and other National SPACE strategies and Policies, United States will enhance Safety and ensure continued Leadership, PREEMINENCE, and freedom OF action in SPACE. Sec. 2. Definitions. For purposes OF this memorandum, following definitions shall apply:. Space Situational Awareness shall mean knowledge and characterization OF SPACE Objects and their operational environment TO Support safe, stable, and sustainable SPACE Activities. Space Traffic Management shall mean planning, Coordination, and on - Orbit synchronization OF Activities TO enhance safety, stability, and sustainability OF Operations in the SPACE environment. Orbital Debris, or SPACE Debris, shall mean any human - made SPACE Object orbiting Earth that no longer serves any useful purpose. Sec. 3. Principles. The United States recognizes, and encourages other nations TO recognize, following principles:.

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Space policy process

United States Space Policy is banked by the Executive branch at the direction of the President of the United States, and submitted for approval and establishment of funding to the legislative process of the United States Congress. Space advocacy organizations may provide advice to government and lobby for space goals. These include advocacy groups such as Space Science Institute, National Space Society, and Space Generation Advisory Council, last of which, among other things, run the annual Yuri's Night event; learning societies such as American Astronomical Society and American Astronautical Society; and policy organizations such as National Academies.

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International law

By authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and laws of the United States of America, Including Title IV of the US Commercial SPACE Launch Competitiveness Act, it is hereby order as follow:. Section 1. Policy. Space Policy Directive - 1 of December 11 2017, provides that commercial partners will participate in an innovative and sustainable Program headed by the United States to lead return of humans to the Moon for long - term exploration and utilization, followed by human missions to Mars and other destinations. Successful long - term exploration and scientific discovery of the Moon, Mars, and Other Celestial Bodies will require partnership with commercial entities to recover and use resources, including water and certain minerals, in Outer SPACE. Uncertainty regarding the right to recover and use SPACE Resources, including extension of the right to Commercial Recovery and Use of lunar Resources, however, has discouraged some commercial entities from participating in this enterprise. Questions as to whether the 1979 Agreement Governing Activities of States on the Moon and Other Celestial Bodies establishes a legal framework for nation states concerning Recovery and Use of SPACE Resources have deepened this uncertainty, particularly because the United States has neither signed nor ratified the Moon Agreement. In fact, only 18 countries have ratified the Moon Agreement, including just 17 of 95 Member States of the United Nations Committee on Peaceful Uses of Outer SPACE. Moreover, differences between the Moon Agreement and the 1967 Treaty on Principles Governing Activities of States in Exploration and Use of Outer SPACE, Including Moon and Other Celestial Bodies which the United States and 108 Other countries have joined, also contribute to uncertainty regarding the right to recover and use SPACE Resources. Americans should have the right to engage in Commercial Exploration, Recovery, and Use of Resources in Outer SPACE, consistent with applicable law. Outer SPACE is a legally and physically unique domain of human activity, and the United States does not view it as global commons. Accordingly, it should be the policy of the United States to Encourage International Support for public and Private Recovery and Use of Resources in Outer SPACE, consistent with applicable Law. Sec. 2. Moon Agreement. The United States is not party to the Moon Agreement. Further, United States does not consider the Moon Agreement to be an effective or necessary instrument to guide nation states regarding promotion of commercial participation in long - term exploration, scientific discovery, and use of the Moon, Mars, or Other Celestial Bodies. Accordingly, Secretary of State shall object to any attempt by any other State or international organization to treat the Moon Agreement as reflecting or otherwise expressing customary International Law. Sec. 3. Encouraging International Support for Recovery and Use of SPACE Resources.

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History

Early in John F. Kennedy's presidency, he was inclined to dismantle plans for the Apollo Program, which he had opposed as a senator, but postponed any decision out of deference to his Vice President, whom he had appointed chairman of the National Advisory Space Council and who strongly supported NASA due to its Texas location. This changed with his January 1961 State of Union address, when he suggested International cooperation in Space. In response to the flight of Yuri Gagarin as the first Man in Space, Kennedy in 1961 committed the United States to landing man on the Moon by the end of the decade. At time, Administration believed that the Soviet Union would be able to land man on the Moon by 1967, and Kennedy saw the American Moon landing as critical to the nation's global prestige and status. His pick for NASA Administrator, James E. Webb, however, pursue broader program incorporating space applications such as weather and communications satellites. During this time, Department of Defense pursued military space applications such as the Dyna - Soar spaceplane Program and the Man Orbiting Laboratory. Kennedy also elevated the status of National Advisory Space Council by assigning the Vice President as its chair.

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Managing Mega-Constellations

Space is getting ever more crowded. US Strategic Command's Space Surveillance Network tracks more than 19 000 objects in orbit around Earth, and there is estimated to be hundreds of thousands of more objects 1cm or larger in space near the planet. Because they are traveling at tens of thousands of kilometers per hour relative to Earth, even small objects pose significant danger. The National Space Council thinks we could do a better job of tracking and mitigating this debris. On Monday morning, executive secretary of the Space Council, Scott Pace, outlined some of the space traffic management changes in a call with a handful of space reporters. This is a new National Policy to address the challenges of a congested space environment, he say. Unfettered access to space is vital US interest. Advocates of this approach, and sharing of data with the public and coordinating other countries, praise efforts by the Space Council. I think it's big step in the right direction, said Brian Weeden, director of program planning for Secure World Foundation. This policy continues efforts begun under the Obama administration to enhance Space situational awareness capabilities and expand it beyond just DOD.

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Emerging Anti-satellite Weapons Threat

US Space Command has evidence that Russia conducted a non - destructive test of a Space - base Anti - Satellite weapon. On July 15, Russia injected a new object into orbit from Cosmos 2543, currently Satellite Catalog Number 45915 in Space - track. Org. Russia released this object in proximity to another Russian Satellite, which is similar to on - orbit activity conducted by Russia in 2017, and inconsistent with the system's State mission as inspector Satellite. Tracking information can be found on Space - track. Org. The Russian Satellite System used to conduct this on - orbit Weapons Test is the same satellite system that we raised concerns about earlier this year, when Russia maneuvered near US Government Satellite, said Gen. John W. Jay Raymond, Commander of US Space Command and US Space Force Chief of Space Operations. This is further evidence of Russia's continuing efforts to develop and test Space - base Systems, and consistent with the Kremlin's published military Doctrine to employ weapons that hold US and ally space assets at risk. The US State Department raised concerns in 2018, and again this year, that Russian satellite behaviors were inconsistent with their State mission and that these satellites display characteristics of Space - base weapon.S According to the Department of State, this behavior is hypocritical and concerning. This event highlights Russia's hypocritical advocacy of Outer Space Arms Control, With which Moscow aims to restrict capabilities of the United States while clearly having no intention of halting its own Counterspace program both Ground - base Anti - Satellite Capabilities and what would appear to be actual in - orbit Anti - Satellite weaponry, say Dr. Christopher Ford, US Assistant Secretary of State currently performing duties of Under Secretary for Arms Control and International Security. Last week's test is another example that threats to US and ally space systems are real, seriously increasing. Russia's development and testing of orbital weapons highlights the importance of establishing the US Space Force as new branch of armed forces and US Space Command as the nation's unified combatant Command for Space. It is the shared interest and responsibility of all spacefaring nations to create conditions for a safe, stable, and operationally sustainable space environment. The United States, in coordination with our allies, is ready and committed to deterring aggression and defending our Nation, our alliesand vital US interests from hostile acts in space, Raymond conclude.

* Please keep in mind that all text is machine-generated, we do not bear any responsibility, and you should always get advice from professionals before taking any actions.

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Sources

* Please keep in mind that all text is machine-generated, we do not bear any responsibility, and you should always get advice from professionals before taking any actions.

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