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    Currently, the space industry is witnessing a commercialisation wave which, at least in parts, can be considered as disruptive. New technology and market trends associated to this commercialisation wave are circumscribed by the term NewSpace. Along with the NewSpace trend, there is a wave of investment in commercial space activities. Favourable framework conditions supporting commercialisation are key factors for investment decisions and the commercial success of companies along the entire value chain.
    Laws and regulations concerning commercial space activities are established in many countries, but they are currently reviewed and amended in the light of technology and market trends. Certain new services and applications are not yet addressed under national laws, or there is no consensus on their treatment at international level. Overall, there are significant uncertainties and/or evolutions regarding the legal framework in which space companies are operating. Companies along the value chain require different types of governmental approvals, including licenses under national space legislation, licenses under national telecommunications or media law, frequency assignments, market access authorizations, or export/import licenses. Delays in authorisation procedures and/or the denial/revocation of governmental approvals may have serious impacts on investments in space ventures.
    So far, investment treaties have not been extensively employed by the space industry for ensuring favourable political and legal conditions supporting their activities. However, the wave of commercial space companies and activities around the globe raises questions on the potential future role of public investment law.


Erik Pellander
BHO Legal, Germany, erik.pellander@bho-legal.com.

    The three “global commons (GC)” Antarctica, outer space and the high seas/deep seabed, which do not fall under the sovereignty of States (“State-free”), have become a symbol of peaceful cooperation and coordination of the international community. The international treaties which have already been negotiated from the 1950s show an astonishing degree of foresight concerning common public interest. Today, however, each of the three spaces is at risk in at least one of the following areas: peace and arms control, sustainability of use, and just and fair distribution of resources and benefits. This has gone so far that States have begun questioning the concept of nonappropriation. Could this potentially lead to conflicts – even armed conflicts? A new approach to the preservation and fair management of the GC is therefore necessary and requires appropriate political and diplomatic action. This paper intends to tackle the three GC together in order to identify steps for further developing their governance and to investigate, whether joint diplomatic initiatives for the three GC could be more effective than isolated efforts to deal with single hotspots. It will be argued that the future of the GC lies in the establishment of comparable moratoria, thresholds, fees and codes of conduct drawing from best practices in one or more of the three GC.


Kai-Uwe Schrogl
European Space Agency (ESA).
Article

The Proposed Public Procurement for Projects to Enhance Industrial Capabilities through Japanese Lessons Learned

Journal International Institute of Space Law, Issue 9 2018
Keywords H-IIA, H3, Ariane 6, COTS, public private partnership, procurement
Authors Mizuki Tani-Hatakenaka
AbstractAuthor's information

    This paper discusses a framework for governmental projects to enhance industrial capabilities through the lessons learned from the Japanese contractual practice of H3 launch vehicle, comparing with the NASA’s Commercial Orbit Transportation Service (COTS). In 1995, the research and development (R&D) of the H-IIA was started by a former body of JAXA, and each manufacturer was responsible for delivery as required. After twelve-times launches, the operation was privatized to Mitsubishi Heavy Industry, Ltd. (MHI). Concerning H3, MHI was selected as a R&D contractor and a launch provider. MHI established the H3 rocket system specification and responsible for delivering the first vehicle to JAXA in 2020, and JAXA is responsible for the total system including its launch base and the H3 flight demonstration. Such a framework gives MHI more creative freedom, but there can be a room for further clarification of the responsibilities. Coincidentally, such a framework between public and private entities is similar to that of the European new flagship launch vehicle, Ariane 6.
    Meanwhile in NASA’s COTS, partners are responsible for all of the development and operation but they are not required to deliver their vehicles to NASA, contrary to H3. It allows clear role allocation and companies’ maximum creativity. A series of contracts of the Commercial Resupply Services (CRS) after COTS is also remarkable to promote private investment, for example, around half of the total R&D cost is borne by private sectors. Also, cost accounting method does not seem to be applied for the price setting.
    The framework like H-2A is still necessary for high-risk R&D conducted by governmental agencies. It will be, however, necessary for projects, which aims at enhancing industrial capabilities through transferring the operations to the private sectors and encouraging innovation, to be taken different measures in relation to selection of prime contractor, delivery and payment in the development phase and to procurement of launch services in the operating phase.


Mizuki Tani-Hatakenaka
Adv. LL.M Student of Air and Space Law, Law School, Leiden University, Steenschuur 25, Leiden, 2311 ES, the Netherlands, tani.mizuki@jaxa.jp.
Article

Fledgling Polish Space Industry Ready for Lift–Off

Law as a Risk Management Tool in the Emerging Space Sector

Journal International Institute of Space Law, Issue 9 2018
Keywords outer space, space activity, national space law, liability in space law, Polish space law
Authors Katarzyna Malinowska
AbstractAuthor's information

    This paper presents an overview of recent developments in Poland from a regulatory and institutional point of view, as well as at a programme level. Though Poles played an active part in setting out the foundations of the international space law, largely through the pioneer of space law – Polish Professor Manfred Lachs – for many years the Polish space industry barely existed, consisting only of the activities of a few engineers brave enough to set up start-ups and cooperate with big international players. The situation changed in 2012, when Poland joined ESA as a full member. Joining ESA and opening up the space industry to small players can be perceived as a significant trigger for the boost of Polish space projects. The first results came quickly. The number of Polish companies active in the sector is growing rapidly, already reaching 300 companies, forming a consistent, consolidated group of large, medium and small enterprises. Over the last five years, the attitude of the government has also been changing.
    Concerning regulatory challenges, Poland has still not adopted comprehensive space legislation, though in July 2017, a draft law on space activity was published by the government. The legal concept adopted in the national space law, especially about risk management, may influence the development of the whole national space activity, which still suffers from insufficient capital to bear the high level of risk related to ultra-hazardous activity such as space activity. The recent tendencies covering small sats, New Space, suborbital flight and space mining are also the subject of pending legislative discussions.


Katarzyna Malinowska
Professor at Kozminski University, Poland, katarzynamalinowska@kozminski.edu.pl.

Marshall Mckellar
University of Mississippi School of Law.

    The United Nations space treaties establish the basic legal framework governing outer space activities. While it is through national space legislation that the spirit and schemes in these treaties are further instilled into specific entities undertaking space activities, launch services contracts play a notable role in final stage of rendezvous and docking with the legal infrastructure at international level. For example, allocation of risk/liability mechanism in these contracts is deeply influenced by treaty provisions and national legislation. These arrangements seem to be made all the more complicated in the context of international launch projects. Growing demand from the small satellite sector for ride hitching opportunities in space launch begs the question of whether and how the launch service contracts need to be tailored to accommodate industry demand and regulatory needs. This paper purports to examine some of the regulatory issues surrounding risk/liability management under standard and piggyback launch services contracts, which reflect deliberate compliance on micro-level with the international and national legal framework on macro-level.


Kang Duan
China Great Wall Industry Corporation.

    This article studies five category of malicious cyber activities against space assets in order to assess to what extent the existing international telecommunications law and space law address such activities and identify which rules should be pursued to effectively solve them. Five category of such activities include jamming, hijacking, hacking, spoofing, and robbing the control of telemetry, tracking and control (TT&C) of a satellite (a kind of anti-satellite (ASAT)). Actual incidents are selected for analysis. Those are: (i) jamming: Iranian deliberate harmful interference to the Eutelsat satellites solved in the ITU; (ii) hijacking: a terrorist organization, Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) hijacking US Intelsat-12 satellite solved by diplomatic negotiation between the Sri Lankan and US Governments using international telecommunications law developed by the ITU and individual national laws; (iii) hacking: alleged Chinese hacking of US NOAA’s information systems; (iv) spoofing: Iranian spoofing of the GPS signals to guide a US/CIA’s RQ-170 UAV into the Iranian territory; and (v) robbing the control of TT&C: alleged Chinese taking control of US remote sensing satellites including Landsat-7 and Terra AM-1. Concluding remarks include: 1) international telecommunications law developed in the ITU can adequately address harmful interference or hijacking as a result of malicious cyber activity as long as that is conducted by a non-State actor; 2) efforts have started in the ITU to strengthen its fact-finding ability in line with the TCBM measures taken in space activities. This orientation may be remembered as a beginning of the new stage that international space law and international telecommunications law would be merged into one field of law: 3) It remains unclear about the implications of an intangible damage occurred to a satellite when its TT&C is robbed of as a result of malicious cyber activity, while it is clear that such an action constitute the violation of the principles of respect for state sovereignty, national jurisdiction and non-intervention. Thus, for promoting peaceful uses of outer space, the elaboration of relevant Articles of the Outer Space Treaty is urgently needed to formulate clear conditions for national space activities.


Setsuko Aoki
Professor of Law, Keio University Law School, Japan, saoki@ls.keio.ac.jp.

    Since its inception, space law has been governed by principles and rules established by governments and primarily applicable to government activities. Today we are experiencing policy changes to encourage private sector initiatives to carry out government missions and to expand potential profit-making opportunities. The space treaties allow for nongovernmental activities in space but only under the auspices of a nation. Each nation approaches legal solutions in their own way. These variations in national law may create challenges for all space-faring nations. If there are no international agreements, they may create a more fragmented, unpredictable, and unsustainable environment for all participants, both governments and private companies in outer space.
    The fragmentation of international law is defined by the development of sets of rules pertaining to specific subject areas that may claim autonomy from principles of general international law. Those subject areas reflect the larger global issues that include the environment, energy, resource availability, migration, health, and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. Space law is unique and may be considered one of the fragmented areas of international law. The principles of the now 50-year old treaties have been formally acknowledged by all space-faring nations. New developments may threaten that.
    At issue are many areas of space law including liability, property rights, and environmental harm. Different on-orbit space activities such as satellite servicing, exploiting resources, and removing debris highlight the types of space activities with many similar legal concerns but which may result in different rules in different nations and even for different rules within a nation. New and growing legal tensions among space-faring nations will arise.
    Solutions to this problem are all suboptimal. Neither top-down oversight nor separate bottom-up rules or guidelines will suffice as stable, predictable, and long-lasting regimes that create a favorable legal environment for future public and private space exploration and use.


Henry R. Hertzfeld
Director and Research Professor, Space Policy Institute, George Washington University, Washington, DC; hhertzfeld@law.gwu.edu.

    Artificial intelligence is an emerging technology which is anticipated to revolutionize society and industry. Artificial intelligence also presents a potential technological component to ensure the cyber and physical security of space assets. However, the use of artificial intelligence in space assets may conflict with certain legal obligations or duties imposed by the space law treaty regime.
    Outer Space Treaty Article VIII obligates a State to retain control over a space object it launches. Using artificial intelligence in space assets presents the question of whether such reliance abdicates a State’s obligation to retain control over a space object it launched or which is registered to it. If so, then issues will exist regarding how a State may balance the use of artificial intelligence in space assets with its obligations under the Outer Space Treaty. For instance, in the emerging autonomous or driverless motor vehicle technology, some jurisdictions in the United States are contemplating laws which mandate human ability to override or otherwise intervene in decision making by artificial intelligence in certain circumstances.
    Similarly, Article III of the Liability Convention imposes liability based on a State’s fault or fault of persons for whom the State is responsible. The use of artificial intelligence in space assets presents the possibility of negating Article III’s fault-based concept. The unsettled liability issues associated with autonomous motor vehicles may very well foreshadow liability and fault allocation issues arising from the use of artificial intelligence in space assets.
    This paper will examine whether the use of artificial intelligence in space assets conforms with a State’s obligation under Outer Space Treaty Article VIII and Liability Convention Article III and analyze what measures, if any, may be necessary to ensure that the provisions are not undermined by the use of artificial intelligence in space assets.


George Anthony Long
Managing Member, Legal Parallax, LLC, United States. gal@legalparallax.com.

    Cyber security opens a new dimension in the discussion on human activities in outer space. The part of the law pertaining to cyberspace which is of interest for this paper is the regulation related to cyber activities in outer space.
    Space activities are not immune from malicious cyber activities as transmission signals are vulnerable to cyber access. The range of threats is very wide and can include the loss of control, the disruption of services and the modification or loss of data. While it is clear that the malicious uses of cyberspace constitute a large spectrum of threats for space operations, the legal rules applicable to cyber operations have still to be determined.
    This paper will first tackle definitional matters in order to describe the technical nature of cyberspace and to address the question on how cyber law may touch upon outer space activities. Then, questions of the applicability of international law and space law to cyber activities as well as measures to address the consequences of cyber threats to the space infrastructure will be addressed.


Rada Popova
Teaching and Research Fellow and PhD candidate at the Institute of Air Law, Space Law and Cyber Law (University of Cologne); (Mag. iur) Law Master’s Degree (University of Vienna); Researcher at the 2017 Centre for Studies and Research (Hague Academy of International Law). Institute of Air Law, Space Law and Cyber Law, University of Cologne, Germany, rada.popova@uni-koeln.de.

Dennis C. O’Brien
The Space Treaty Project.

    In 2010, the Scientific and Technical Subcommittee of the UNCOPUOS formed the Working Group on Long Term Sustainability (LTS) of Outer Space Activities, assigning it the task of formulating voluntary non-binding guidelines focusing on sustainable space utilization, space debris and space operations, space weather, and regulatory regimes. At its June 2016 meeting, the UNCOPUOS approved 12 of the proposed guidelines, while several remained on the UNCOPUOS agenda. Although the LTS Guidelines are voluntary, their adoption by the UNCOPUOS and consideration by the UNGA’s 4th Committee, are evidence of a growing awareness of their potential contribution to the evolution of space law applicable to all states. This paper explores whether the LTS Guidelines could evolve into customary legal norms as part of customary international law (CIL) and steps that could promote that evolution.


Larry F. Martinez
California State University, Long Beach, USA.

James H. Armstead
Attorney, USA.

Merve Erdem
University of Ankara, Turkey.

Mahulena Hofmann
University of Luxembourg, Mahulena.Hofmann@uni.lu.

    The basic principles of space law such as the freedom of use of outer space and the UN Remote Sensing Principles, grants the freedom of remote sensing activities from outer space, and although many technological difficulties exist, as a result of continuous endeavor in R&D, the possible civil and private use of satellite remote sensing data to solve various issues is increasing in various fields such as disaster management, global environment issues, and is expected to further increase.
    The expansion of the use of Satellite Remote Sensing Data by current and new users is welcomed, however not all data could be with no restrictions. As a solution to this matter, on November 15th, 2017, the Remote Sensing Data Act came into full effect in Japan. The Act was established based on the fact that the use of satellite remote sensing data by private actors have increased, rules are necessary to prevent wrongful use, and a legal system is necessary to promote the new industry and services that use satellite remote sensing data. It is similar to the legislation related to remote sensing in many other countries that have high resolution satellites such as the U.S., Canada, France and Germany.
    The Act mainly sets an authorization regime for use of satellite remote sensing instruments, and a Certificate for the use of satellite remote sensing data, in order to ensure appropriate handling of remote sensing data. Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) is subject to these authorization and certificates. JAXA has worked closely with the Cabinet Office on the application, and now gains two authorization of the satellites, including the first Authorization based on this law.
    This paper introduces the legal system in brief, and how JAXA responds to the authorization scheme. Furthermore, describes the impacts of the law on the practical use of data, and suggestions for future improvements.


Daisuke Saisho
Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, Management and Integration Department, Space Technology Directorate I, Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency,2-1-1 Sengen, Tsukuba, Ibaraki, Japan, 305-0061.

    The aim of this paper is to present an overview of the assessment undertaken by the DG Competition of the European Commission on a series of merger and acquisition cases occurring in the space sector in the last 25 years. Not only do the decisions of the DG Competition record the evolution of the major actors in the space sector in Europe but they also demonstrate how the DG Competition of the European Commission has acknowledged the regulatory contribution of the European Space Agency to the creation and growth of the industrial landscape of the space sector in Europe. The paper is not meant to be a scholarly contribution to the analysis of EU competition law. It is, instead, a fact-finding exercise seen from the perspective of ESA’s industrial policy.


Marco Ferrazzani
European Space Agency (ESA), Legal Counsel and Head of Legal Services Department.

Ioanna Thoma
European Space Agency (ESA),Legal Officer.

    In 2017, more than $3.9 billion of private capital was invested in commercial space companies. This represents, in a single year, more than half of the total amount of private investment during the preceding five years. The private space sector has also witnessed a dramatic increase in the number of investor participants. The industry continues to expand, and analysts predict that it will grow to a multi-trillion dollar industry in the next two decades. The industry is also witnessing rapidly falling launch prices – and as launch prices drop, the barrier to enter space also decreases. In addition to facilitating the expansion of existing space-based businesses, such as telecommunications and Earth observation, greater access to outer space opens the door for new entrants into fields such as space manufacturing, mining and tourism.
    Almost half of all investment in space companies since the year 2000, the vast majority of which was made within the last six years, has been from venture capital (“VC”) firms. VC investors seek eventually to monetize their investment by exiting through a sale of the company to a third party (usually an existing space industry player, but sometimes to another financial buyer) or through an initial public offering. Acquisitions by industry competitors are particularly common in the satellite sector, where established incumbents often look for outside innovation (for example, Terra Bella’s acquisition by Planet or DigitalGlobe’s acquisition by MDA). Furthermore, space activities are very costly, but benefit from economies of scale – evidenced by joint ventures between Lockheed and Boeing (United Launch Alliance) and between Airbus and Safran.
    In light of the increasing frequency of mergers and acquisitions (“M&A”) deal making in the space industry, this paper will examine publicly disclosed acquisition agreements governing certain prior deals in the industry in order to draw conclusions about the unique risks faced by commercial space acquirers and how they have sought to mitigate such risks. From diligence considerations to key terms of the acquisition agreements (such as the representations and warranties), this paper will provide practical insight into the most important considerations for private deals in this growing and rapidly changing industry.


Brendan Cohen
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP, United States, bcohen@cgsh.com.

Anna Veneziano
Prof. Anna Veneziano, Deputy Secretary-General, International Institute for the Unification of Private Law (Unidroit).

Hamza Hameed
Mr. Hamza Hameed, Legal Consultant, International Institute for the Unification of Private Law (Unidroit).

    The majority of the world still does not have access to the internet, and this “digital divide” is not only an issue in developing countries. Unconnected populations exist in every country, and regulators must find ways to provide universal access to the internet. Furthermore, the demand for connectivity (internet and data) is growing exponentially, and existing terrestrial solutions likely will be insufficient. Regulators must foster new technologies such as the newest non-geostationary satellite constellations, which have almost no delay for two-way voice and data connections and can provide broadband to the most remote and unconnected populations and industries. To ensure the fast deployment of these solutions, regulators should support technology-neutral regulations (such as blanket licensing) that encourage speedy rollout of innovative services, as well as have transparent “open skies” policies that promote competition (which has been proven to boost economies).


Ruth Pritchard-Kelly
Vice President of Regulatory Affairs, OneWeb.

    From the inception of European integration, a regime trying to regulate and arrange competition as much as considered necessary for the benefit of society at large has been one of the core elements of the European Union’s legal order. While the European Union has over the past few decades become more and more involved in the European space effort, this has so far hardly given rise to fundamental application of this competition regime to space activities, even if space also in Europe increasingly has become commercialized and privatized. The current paper investigates the reasons and rationale for this special situation, addressing inter alia the special character of outer space activities and the space industry and the role of the European Space Agency in this respect.


Frans G. von der Dunk
University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

    The Act on the Exploration and Use of Space Resources (the Space Resources Act) adopted by Luxemburg Parliament in July 2017, in particular Article 1 which stipulates that “Space resources are capable of being appropriated”, has raised various discussions in the international community. Along with the U.S. Commercial Space Launch Competitiveness Act of 2015 (CSLCA), State Parties to the Outer Space Treaty (OST), which prohibits national appropriation of outer space whereby, has taken the first step towards an overall commercial exploitation of space resources by national recognition of private property rights thereon. Yet, such initiative, creating property rights over space resources obtained in missions conducted by private entities, has raised an inevitable question for other space-faring nations who might be State Parties to the OST or the Moon Agreement (MOON) or both of them: what should they do in their domestic laws?
    The CSLCA, in particular Title IV, was deliberately designed in a way that obviously act in accordance with existing international law. However, it grants ownership and other rights of space resources only to citizens of U.S., because of which the controversies raised by this nationality-oriented approach are continuing to focus on if its unilateral interpretation does accord with Art. I and II of the OST. The Space Resources Act, however, by stipulating conformity with Luxemburg’s international obligations in Art. 2(3) in the Space Resources Act, has taken an approach that is heading to the same direction yet different goal. Luxemburg is neither one of the super space powers nor a potential one when it officially announced its ambition on a domestic regulatory framework for commercial space industries. At the current stage, the legal certainty provided by the Space Resources Act works for the blueprint for the promising commercial investment in the space field. This article examines the similarities and differences between the CSLCA, in particular Title IV, and the Space Resources Act. By such review, this article presents the legal interpretation of core principles of international space law which converge to States’ practices on a national basis, and demonstrates to what extent are they in consistency with international space law to try to figure out for other States if there are more options of establishing a national legal framework for exploiting space resources.


Yangzi Tao
Keio University.
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