Wan Hu, the Chinese astronaut

Wan Hu, the Chinese astronaut, is really well known in China. And throughout the world. Wan Hu is a legendary Chinese official who was described in twentieth century CE sources as the world’s first “astronaut” by being lifted by rockets into outer space. The crater Wan-Hoo on the far side of the Moon is named after him.

Space Law and the New Space

This article describes the issues surrounding the regulation of “New Space” activities. Today’s space field is characterised by new activities, new actors and new concerns. New activities in space such as space mining or large constellations of small satellites raise issues that are not clearly addressed in the UN space treaties.

The United Arab Emirates in space

The United Arab Emirates Space Agency (UAESA), which was proposed in 2008 as a civilian Pan-Arab Space Agency, like the European Space Agency (ESA), is an agency of the United Arab Emirates government responsible for the development of the country’s space industry. It was created in 2014.

An introduction to Orbital Mechanics

Orbital mechanics is the application of the laws of physics to describing the motion of spacecraft. It is one of the fundamental topics in astronautics and is essential to the design, implementation, and operation of a space mission. As well as defining the sorts of orbits that are possible, orbital mechanics is needed to determine spacecraft trajectories.

The lawfulness of extraterrestrial real estate

Let’s have a look at the lawfulness of extraterrestrial real estate. Extraterrestrial real estate refers to claims of land ownership on other planets or natural satellites or parts of space by certain organisations, individuals, and artists. The topic of real estate on celestial bodies has been present since the 1890s.

The laws of space

With this new Space Law article on Space Legal Issues, let’s have a look at the laws of space and outline the field of international space law and explain its main principles, focusing on the five UN space treaties. It will present the international law‐making process and examine the ability of existing international legal instruments to address current and future space activities and challenges.

The Origins of the Space Age

Let’s have a look at the history of spaceflight from the origins of rocketry to the beginning of the Space Age. Cultures around the world have contributed both to the visions and to the technological developments necessary to make spaceflight a reality.

Article 48 of the ITU Constitution

Article 48 of the ITU Constitution provides that “Member States retain their entire freedom with regard to military radio installations”, a provision that the International Group of Experts agreed reflects longstanding State practice with respect to the governance of international telecommunications.

KITSAT-1, the first South Korean satellite

Launched as a piggyback payload on an Ariane 4 (as part of the TOPEX/Poseidon mission) in August 1992 from Kourou in French Guyana, KITSAT-1, the first South Korean satellite, was developed by SaTRec after three years of participation in an educational program at the University of Surrey (England) in satellite development and training of researchers.

The legal status of space debris

Considering the growing problem of space debris, sometimes referred to as space waste or space garbage, let’s study the legal status of space debris, and ask ourselves, for this new space law article on Space Legal Issues, the following question: are space debris space objects?

The Tallinn Manual and Space Law

The Tallinn Manual (originally entitled the Tallinn Manual on the International Law Applicable to Cyber Warfare) is an academic, non-binding study on how International Law (in particular the jus ad bellum and international humanitarian law) applies to cyber conflicts and cyber warfare. What are its relationships with Space Law?

Estoppel in Public International Law

In Public International Law, the doctrine of estoppel protects legitimate expectations of States induced by the conduct of another State. The term stems from common and Anglo-American law, without being identical with the different forms found in domestic law. It is supported by the protection of good faith (bona fide) in the traditions of civil law.

Sea Launch and Launching States

Sea Launch is a multinational spacecraft launch service that used a mobile maritime launch platform (an above-ground facility from which a rocket-powered missile or space vehicle is vertically launched) for equatorial launches of commercial payloads on specialised Zenit-3SL rockets. The private launching company was active from 1995 to 2014.

Responsibility and Liability in Space Law

Responsibility and Liability are two important terms in international law pointing to two fundamental principles. Article VI of the Outer Space Treaty speaks of the international responsibility of states for national activities in space to be in conformity with the treaty, and Article VII of the same treaty, of the liability of states for damage towards other states or their nationals or property.

In situ resource utilization

In space exploration, in situ (which means “in its original position or place” in Latin) resource utilization (ISRU) is the practice of collection, processing, storing and use of materials found or manufactured on other astronomical objects (the Moon, Mars, asteroids, etc.) that replace materials that would otherwise be brought from Earth.

International Traffic in Arms Regulations

International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) is a United States regulatory regime (dating back to the mid-1970s) to restrict and control the export of defense and military related technologies to safeguard U.S. national security and further U.S. foreign policy objectives. Before 1992, satellite components were classified as munitions, and ITAR export compliance was controlled by the State Department.

The Sources of Public International Law

Public International Law, also known as “Law of Nations”, is the name of a body of rules which regulate the conduct of sovereign states in their relations with one another. Sources of Public International Law include treaties, international customs, general principles of law as recognised by civilized nations, the decisions of national and lower courts, and scholarly writings.

In-orbit transfer of ownership

For this new Space Law article on Space Legal Issues, let’s focus on the mechanism and consequences of, concerning space objects (especially satellites), the in-orbit transfer of ownership. Let’s focus on Satellite Ownership Transfers and the Liability of the Launching States. A space object may be sold/bought while in outer space. There is no objection by principle to a transfer of registration.

Badr-1, the first Pakistani satellite

Badr-1, meaning Full Moon-1 in Urdu, is the first Pakistani satellite. The Badr-1 was Pakistan’s first indigenously developed and manufactured digital communications and experimental artificial satellite. The spacecraft was launched into Low Earth Orbit (LEO) by China on July 16, 1990.

The legal framework for commercial uses of ISS

NASA, the initiator of the International Space Station (ISS), is currently reinforcing partnerships with the commercial sector as well as other ISS Partner States: this gives rise to a need to analyse the legal framework for commercial uses of ISS.