Satellite

Satellite operating contract

Space contracts are not completely new contracts: they borrow pre-existing molds. However, contractual practice is innovating in order to respond to new needs generated by new techniques: innovation is reflected here in the very fine adaptation to the subject of the contract. Let’s have a look at the satellite operating contract.

The International Frequency Registration Board

The International Frequency Registration Board (IFRB) was created in order to maintain a register of all radio frequencies used for all purposes throughout the world, and to ensure that no new frequency was taken into use by any country if the use of this frequency caused interferences to radio stations already in operation, in accordance with the provisions of the Radio Regulations.

The first come, first served technique in space law

The first come, first served technique, used for a long time in satellite telecommunications law in order to allocate the natural resources of space (geostationary orbit, frequency spectrum) between States, is in the foreground currently in the context of the allocation of domain names allowing access to the Internet.

Satellite launch contract

How does the satellite launch contract works? How is it created? In this area, we can really speak of the launch market. The last few years have in fact seen the European company Arianespace, long in a situation of quasi-monopoly in matters of commercial launches, widely challenged by companies not only American and Russian, but also Chinese, Japanese, Indian, and Brazilian.

Understanding the Wassenaar Arrangement

The main objective of the Wassenaar Arrangement is to coordinate export policies in terms of armaments but also dual-use goods and technologies. It succeeds the Coordinating Committee for Multilateral Export Controls signed in 1949 (COCOM).

Satellite construction contract

Space contracts are not completely new contracts: they borrow pre-existing molds. However, contractual practice is innovating in order to respond to new needs generated by new techniques: innovation is reflected here in the very fine adaptation to the subject of the contract.

Space technologies to fight the Coronavirus epidemics: the pros and the cons

Since last December, when the Coronavirus epidemics had spread out starting from the Chinese city of Wuhan, news are continuously dealing with the numbers of deaths, the infected people, the economic aspects of lockdown and so on. But among others news, an event that has been playing an important role in the fight against the virus has been overshadowed.

The launch of the first Ethiopian satellite

The data from the Ethiopian Remote Sensing Satellite, the first Ethiopian satellite, will help the country to monitor its resources, such as forest and mining resources, improve weather forecast, as well as observe agricultural transformations which will therefore improve the quality of the country’s responses to various issues.

Advertising in outer space: the beginnings of commercial drifts?

Advertising is everywhere: on posters (paper or digital), in magazines, on TV, on the Internet, in our smartphones, and even soon in our connected and autonomous cars. Is the next step the sky? Will we one day see giant billboards floating in the clouds… even in outer space?

The need to establish a communication network in deep space

Optical space telecommunications is a category of space telecommunications based on the use of lasers for data transmission. This technique makes it possible to considerably increase the speed compared to radio links while reducing the electrical power required.

The history of space elevators

The promoters of space elevators generally do not fail to mention the first published concrete attempt, that of the Tower of Babel. Literally “The Gate of the Gods”, it was a ziggurat, a two-story temple-tower, supposed to allow the Babylonians to reach a sacred domain where they would find their supreme god, who lived in the highest heavens.

Towards the taxation of LEO activities?

Taxation of LEO activities seems to be a solution. The appropriate model could be the following one: if a State A wants to launch a satellite or a constellation of satellites, it will have to pay X depending on the orbit (and how already saturated and used the orbit is), the size of the space object or the number of space objects, and finally and why not, depending on its intended purposes (whether scientific, commercial, military…).

The case of force majeure in space law

Similarly, space debris among those present in Low Earth Orbit (LEO), not listed because less than ten centimetres in size, could cause damage to a satellite or even compromise a launch. If it is established that these debris did indeed cause the damage, force majeure may be claimed, insofar as it is impossible to predict the presence of these small debris.

The need for a Deep Space GPS

Current navigation has many limitations. One of them is to establish a constant dependence between the space object and the Earth. Another important limitation is to not allow deep space navigation. Thus, this navigation, when the range of action of the vessels will increase, communication times can be counted in minutes, even hours.

The history of spy satellites

A reconnaissance satellite or spy satellite is a low-orbiting satellite that collects information about civilian and military installations in other countries using an optical or radar system. The first generation type took photographs, then ejected canisters of photographic film which would descend back down into Earth’s atmosphere.

Will outer space soon become inaccessible?

The growth of debris in outer space is exponential and collisions between discarded satellites could well trigger a chain reaction known as “Kessler Syndrome”. It would then be impossible to put satellites in orbit.

Swarm Technologies and space law

Swarm Technologies, the Silicon Valley creator of “SpaceBee” picosatellites, is an American start-up based in California. On January 12, 2018, four satellites of the American start-up were illegally put into orbit by Antrix Corporation Limited; what are the space legal issues?

The Philippine Space Act

Rodrigo Duterte, the President of the Philippines, has just signed a new law called “The Philippine Space Act” (Republic Act No. 11363) on August 8, 2019. The latter will allow this country of Southeast Asia to create its own national space agency: the PhilSA. This agency will be situated in the Clark Special Economic Zone, north of Manila.

Space legal issues concerning second-hand satellite market

The opportunity with on-orbit services would be the development related to the creation of a second-hand satellite market. Let’s study the space legal issues concerning second-hand satellite market.

Is the orbital environment a natural resource?

“Our orbital environment is a natural resource. Just as we need to protect our rivers, forests and oceans on Earth, we believe our orbits need to be monitored and maintained in order to be sustainable”. When a valuable, naturally-occurring resource, is difficult to substitute, its preservation is of prime importance.