Mars

What was the Constellation Program?

The Constellation Program was a NASA space exploration program, the main objective of which was to send astronauts to the Moon around 2020 for long-term missions. As soon as it was presented to the media, the Constellation Program received a mixed reception. While some were enthusiastic about the idea of a new era of exploration beyond the Low Earth Orbit (LEO), others found little interest in an Apollo-bis deemed to be little innovative.

Towards an International Space Agency?

It is in the light of all this questioning, and of all this projects that we fully understand the need for an International Space Agency (ISA) which will establish a common program and course of action. It would define the objectives of humanity on a short, medium and long term. The first one could be the organisation of mission on Mars.

In-situ Resource Utilization (ISRU) and the future of commercial space

Today, many in the space community think that In-situ Resource Utilization (ISRU) is not ready for use in actual missions, however it is a fact that space resources are already being used in outer space today. Solar energy provides substantial capability to satellites in Earth orbit and on inter-planetary journeys.

What is the nationality of someone born in space?

What would be the nationality of a baby born in weightlessness, four hundred kilometers away from the Earth? Should we consider different scenarios, based on the place of birth? Is there a difference to the citizenship of the baby, whether the birth occurs in a spaceship, in an international space station, on a futuristic lunar base, or on a colony of Mars?

Proposal for a Martian Constitution

ARTICLE 43: The Republic of Mars is a Federation. Each State on Earth is to be assigned a Federated State of the Republic of Mars. In the event of independence, the territory of the Federated States of the Republic of Mars would no longer belong to the Terrestrial States.

Women in outer space

The first one hundred percent female extravehicular activity (EVA) took place last Friday from the International Space Station (ISS). Presented as an event by NASA, this release reminds us that aerospace remains a very masculine world: only ten percent of astronauts are women.

Is naming stars legal?

For this new Space Law article on Space Legal Issues, we have asked ourselves the following question: is naming stars legal? There are services which will let you name a star in the sky after a loved one. You can commemorate a special day, or the life of an amazing person. But can you really name a star? Is it legal?

Telepossession and space law

Telepossession could provide for a form of possession, which would allow mining and space colonisation companies to develop the extraterrestrial resources used in making space stations, fleets of spacecraft, fuelling stations and all other colonisation infrastructures.

The militarisation of celestial bodies

About thirty years ago, a part of the doctrine hypothesised the possibility of using celestial bodies as interplanetary stations. This eventuality goes hand in hand with the recognition of the exploration of the Moon and other celestial bodies mentioned in Article I of the 1967 Outer Space Treaty. One wonders what implications this discipline might entail, and once again, we could be faced with a gap capable of exposing risky conduct.

Space archaeology: how to protect lunar sites?

As private companies or NASA revive the space race to Mars, the Moon has once again become an important landmark in space exploration. How to protect the first sites of space exploration, when space is supposed to belong to everyone? The trace of the boot left on the lunar floor by Neil Armstrong in July 1969 is still intact, fifty years later.

Pedis possessio and asteroids

Pedis possessio is a principle of mining law, according to which a qualified person who peaceably, and in good faith, enters a land in the public domain in search of valuable minerals, may hold the place exclusively against others having no better title. In the context of space law and that of the lawfulness of space mining activities, could the principle of pedis possessio interest space lawyers?

Public-private partnership contracts

Public-private partnership contracts involve collaborations between government agencies, and private-sector companies, used to finance, build, and operate projects, such as public transportation networks, parks, and convention centres. Financing projects through public-private partnership contracts can allow projects to be completed sooner, or make them a possibility in the first place.

The 1979 Moon Agreement

The 1979 Moon Agreement reaffirms and elaborates on many of the provisions of the 1967 Outer Space Treaty as applied to the Moon and other celestial bodies, providing that those bodies should be used exclusively for peaceful purposes, that their environments should not be disrupted, that the United Nations should be informed of the location and purpose of any station established on those bodies.

Dragonfly, a drone soon on Titan

Dragonfly, the fourth mission of the “New Frontier” exploration program, is a planned spacecraft and mission that will send a mobile robotic rotorcraft lander to Titan, the largest moon of Saturn, in order to study prebiotic chemistry and extraterrestrial habitability at various locations where it will perform vertical-take-offs and landings.

Why explore space?

Today, space activities are frequently justified on the basis of economic or policy rationales, or the benefits deriving from space spinoffs. Yet the dream of spaceflight is as old as Humanity and found in cultures around the world. So what drives us to explore the cosmos?

The Solar System

The Solar System has three major zones: the inner solid planets and asteroids, the large gaseous planets, and the ice-dominated small bodies that make up the Kuiper belt and Oort Cloud.

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.

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 has been present since the 1890s.

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.