White House aims to reduce satellite clutter in space

June 18, 2018 by Marcia Dunn
Credit: CC0 Public Domain

The White House is establishing a new policy for reducing satellite clutter in space.

President Donald Trump is expected to sign the new space policy directive Monday, as the National Space Council convenes.

The new policy calls for providing a safe and secure environment up in orbit, as satellite traffic increases. It also sets up new guidelines for satellite design and operation, to avoid collisions and spacecraft breakups.

Vice President Mike Pence heads the recently revived space council. Cabinet members will take part in the afternoon meeting at the White House, as well as NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine, retired astronauts and scientists.

The council's executive secretary, Scott Pace, told reporters before the meeting that is becoming increasingly congested and current guidelines are inadequate to address the challenge.

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4 / 5 (3) Jun 18, 2018
The US can develop as many laws to govern space as they want...the US does not own space. The US cannot dictate to any other country how to "use" space. I just read an article about a California based company who applied to have two of their satellites launched from an Amercian site, the US denied the launch because they said the satellites were too small...India had no problem with it.
5 / 5 (1) Jun 18, 2018
It was a US company so subject to US law. They applied to launch 4 satellites that were too small to be tracked accurately so the application was denied. They launched anyway and until their orbit decays the things are essentially invisible navigation hazards just waiting to collide with an actual useful spacecraft at 28,000 kph. Their next generation satellite will be larger and are expected to be approved for launch, hopefully by then they'll have learned that they're not alone in space and need to take other users' needs into account.

I would expect this new policy to be useless poorly thought-out chin wagging, like everything else that has come out of this sAdministration so far.

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