Space policy roundup – Sept.14.2020

A sampling of links to recent space policy, politics, and government (US and international) related space news and resource items that I found of interest (find previous space policy roundups here):

International space


** Space Policy Edition: The Moon-to-Mars Strategy, with Dr. Scott Pace – The Planetary Society

The National Space Council’s Scott Pace joins the show to discuss the current administration’s whole-of-government strategy to expand humanity’s presence beyond Earth. He argues that Project Artemis naturally integrates national security, commerce, geopolitical, and exploration opportunities and generates a broad benefit to the United States, thus creating a political coalition to sustain human activity beyond Earth. Casey and Mat also discuss NASA’s announcement that it hopes to purchase commercially-collected lunar samples—the answer may not be what you think.

** NASA Asks Commercial Companies to Collect Moon Rocks – NASA

… To meet NASA’s requirements, a company will collect a small amount of Moon “dirt” or rocks from any location on the lunar surface, provide imagery to NASA of the collection and the collected material, along with data that identifies the collection location, and conduct an “in-place” transfer of ownership of the lunar regolith or rocks to NASA. After ownership transfer, the collected material becomes the sole property of NASA for our use.

NASA’s goal is that the retrieval and transfer of ownership will be completed before 2024. The solicitation creates a full and open competition, not limited to U.S. companies, and the agency may make one or more awards. The agency will determine retrieval methods for the transferred lunar regolith at a later date.

** Christopher Johnson – The Need for Engagement and Outcomes In Space Law – Cold Star Project S02E61

Space lawyer Christopher Johnson from the Secure World Foundation is back on the Cold Star Project, and we’re looking at what he has learned this year. Christopher has hosted several Moon Dialog Research Salons and gotten tremendous public input and engagement on space issues. With host Jason Kanigan, he discusses:

– What he learned from the salons – What differences he noted in platforms used, behaviors and outcomes in public engagement with actor/agency/government versus the public
– What’s needed to move forward with space law engagement and outcomes; what that looks like as you’ve seen so far, in terms of process and outcome
– Incentive versus punishment, carrot vs stick, when it comes to issues like orbital debris control: which do we need most?
– What updates do we need most to Outer Space Treaty areas?
– What are his expectations for the Summit for Space Sustainability hosted by the Secure World Foundation beginning tomorrow?

Secure World Foundation website:

** 83- The Space Force, Commercial Technology and Ground DigitizationConstellations Podcast

Listen to Doug Lamborn, U.S. Congressman, talk about partnering with commercial providers. With the government relying more on commercial to take some of the risks of Space off the shoulders of the taxpayer, it makes it a win-win situation. He describes commercial companies bringing a lot of capability, including intelligence surveillance and reconnaissance. Congressman Lamborn discusses a common digital ground infrastructure being important to unify commercial and military satellite communications capabilities. In addition, commercial industry is developing digital ground capabilities that can be further leveraged by the government, avoiding parallel investment in terminals, hardware and satellites. Finally, learn about the difference between the Space Development Agency (SDA) creating a large constellation of satellites to track missiles versus the Missile Defense Agency’s (MDA) program providing global sensor coverage to detect, track and target ballistic and hypersonic missiles.

** Artemis VS Apollo: Is NASA’s Artemis program actually “sustainable?” – Everyday Astronaut

NASA’s making some big moves to finally get humans back to the moon for the first time in over 50 years. The Artemis program is shaping up with checks written and hardware built! So how does a 21st Century program to the moon compare to that of the 1960’s? In Today’s video, we’re going to answer the question, why does NASA think Artemis will be a sustainable program when SLS is sooooo dang expensive AND it’ll take at least two launches to get humans and their lunar landers to the moon…

** September 9, 2020 Zimmerman/Batchelor podcast | Behind The Black

** September 11, 2020 Zimmerman/Batchelor podcast | Behind The Black

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