IAC 2013 - ADR Policy Project resentation

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It has become increasingly clear in recent years that the issue of space debris, particularly in low-Earth orbit, can no longer be ignored or simply mitigated. Orbital debris currently threatens safe spaceflight for both satellites and humans aboard the International Space Station. Additionally, orbital debris might impact Earth upon reentry, endangering human lives and damaging the environment with toxic materials. In sum, orbital debris seriously jeopardizes the future not only of human presence in space, but also of human safety on Earth. While international efforts to mitigate the current situation and limit the creation of new debris are useful, recent studies predicting debris evolution have indicated that these will not be enough to ensure humanity's access to and use of the near-Earth environment in the long-term. Rather, active debris removal (ADR) must be pursued if we are to continue benefiting from and conducting space activities. While the concept of ADR is not new, it has not yet been implemented. This is not just because of the technical feasibility of such a scheme, but also because of the host of economic, legal/regulatory, and political issues associated with debris remediation. The costs of ADR are not insignificant and, in today's restrictive fiscal climate, are unlikely/ to be covered by any single actor. Similarly, ADR concepts bring up many unresolved questions about liability, the protection of proprietary information, safety, and standards. In addition, because of the dual use nature of ADR technologies, any venture will necessarily require political considerations. Despite the many unanswered questions surrounding ADR, it is an endeavor worth pursuing if we are to continue relying on space activities for a variety of critical daily needs and services. Moreover, we can’t ignore the environmental implications that an unsustainable use of space will imply for life on Earth in the long run. This paper aims to explore some of these challenges and propose an economically, politically, and legally viable ADR option. Much like waste management on Earth, cleaning up space junk will likely lie somewhere between a public good and a private sector service. An international, cooperative, public-private partnership concept can address many of these issues and be economically sustainable, while also driving the creation of a proper set of regulations, standards and best practices.

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IAC 2013 - ADR Policy Project resentation

  1. 1. CONCEPTUALIZING AN ECONOMICALLY, LEGALLY AND POLITICALLY VIABLE ACTIVE DEBRIS REMOVAL OPTION IN SUPPORT OF THE UNITED NATIONS PROGRAMME ON SPACE APPLICATIONS IAC-13-A6.8.1 Matteo Emanuelli | Tiffany Chow | Deva Prasad | Giulia Federico | Joshua Loughman Space Safety and Sustainability Project Group
  2. 2. CONCEPTUALIZING AN ECONOMICALLY, LEGALLY AND POLITICALLY VIABLE ACTIVE DEBRIS REMOVAL OPTION • INTRODUCTION • ASSESSMENT • CONCLUSION • Background • Policy and Legal Challenges • Economic Challenges • Scorecard Method • Case Study • Conclusion & Next Steps 5/15/2014 IN SUPPORT OF THE UNITED NATIONS PROGRAMME ON SPACE APPLICATIONS 2 Summary
  3. 3. INTRODUCTION
  4. 4. CONCEPTUALIZING AN ECONOMICALLY, LEGALLY AND POLITICALLY VIABLE ACTIVE DEBRIS REMOVAL OPTION • UN Space Debris Mitigation Guidelines (2007) • Kessler Syndrome in LEO • Necessity of ADR has been highlighted by many studies* • At least 5 large objects deorbited per year *Liou (2010) BACKGROUND 5/15/2014 4IN SUPPORT OF THE UNITED NATIONS PROGRAMME ON SPACE APPLICATIONS Operational satellites 6% Decommissio ned satellites, spe nt upper stages and mission- related objects Debris originated from more than 200 in- orbit fragmentation ssince 1961 56% CATALOGUED ORBITAL POPULATION (US SSN) Source: ESA
  5. 5. CONCEPTUALIZING AN ECONOMICALLY, LEGALLY AND POLITICALLY VIABLE ACTIVE DEBRIS REMOVAL OPTION Ideally, passive (mitigation) and active (removal) means should be combined to face debris situation However: • complicated Liability and Licensing • lack of Definition for space debris Current International space law framework: • Space debris not even mentioned in Article IX Outer Space Treaty (1967) • Liability Convention (1972) does not impose legal provision to impose obligation on undertaking mitigation or removal actions • Liability can be mitigated by negotiations and compensations but not doable in commercial framework • ITAR and others export control regulations POLICY AND LEGAL CHALLENGES 5/15/2014 5IN SUPPORT OF THE UNITED NATIONS PROGRAMME ON SPACE APPLICATIONS
  6. 6. CONCEPTUALIZING AN ECONOMICALLY, LEGALLY AND POLITICALLY VIABLE ACTIVE DEBRIS REMOVAL OPTION Proposed actions to foster ADR: • Agree on a shared definition of space debris • Definition of a pro-active legal regime to foster public private partnership • Develop more accurate monitoring capabilities • Establish an independent organization to track, store and share data about orbital debris • Develop SSA traffic management system POLICY AND LEGAL CHALLENGES 5/15/2014 6IN SUPPORT OF THE UNITED NATIONS PROGRAMME ON SPACE APPLICATIONS
  7. 7. CONCEPTUALIZING AN ECONOMICALLY, LEGALLY AND POLITICALLY VIABLE ACTIVE DEBRIS REMOVAL OPTION ECONOMIC CHALLENGES 5/15/2014 7IN SUPPORT OF THE UNITED NATIONS PROGRAMME ON SPACE APPLICATIONS ADR Cost Value Partially addressed by policy approaches (International tax, license on launch operations, removal fee, etc.). Need to identify risk, stakeholders and time horizon. If Cost < Value and Cost < Cost of alternatives, then the activity should be pursued and the stakeholders would procure the service. “Build it first” demonstrator would set baseline mission cost and create base for appropriate framework.
  8. 8. CONCEPTUALIZING AN ECONOMICALLY, LEGALLY AND POLITICALLY VIABLE ACTIVE DEBRIS REMOVAL OPTION National space agencies would cover development costs and by doing so, establishing procedures, pushing creation of appropriate policies that can be applied by economic forces. (e.g. Telecommunications satellites, launchers, space station) Assuming a legal and policy framework for ADR, commercial objectives are: • Clearly identified value proposition for clearly defined stakeholders • Modelling of risk to multiple assets over a time horizon • Identification of alternatives and trade study of those options ECONOMIC CHALLENGES 5/15/2014 8IN SUPPORT OF THE UNITED NATIONS PROGRAMME ON SPACE APPLICATIONS
  9. 9. ASSESSMENT
  10. 10. CONCEPTUALIZING AN ECONOMICALLY, LEGALLY AND POLITICALLY VIABLE ACTIVE DEBRIS REMOVAL OPTION Objective and multidisciplinary method to assess ADR projects to identify potential successful candidates but also to suggest preferred solutions • Different criteria • Select measures and weights SCORECARD METHOD 5/15/2014 10IN SUPPORT OF THE UNITED NATIONS PROGRAMME ON SPACE APPLICATIONS
  11. 11. CONCEPTUALIZING AN ECONOMICALLY, LEGALLY AND POLITICALLY VIABLE ACTIVE DEBRIS REMOVAL OPTION • Policy, Legal, Technical and Economic Framework • The method does not aim to provide a comprehensive description of viable ADR projects but to provide a simple and easy-to-use indicator to determine the overall value of the ADR projects analysed SCORECARD METHOD 5/15/2014 11IN SUPPORT OF THE UNITED NATIONS PROGRAMME ON SPACE APPLICATIONS
  12. 12. CONCEPTUALIZING AN ECONOMICALLY, LEGALLY AND POLITICALLY VIABLE ACTIVE DEBRIS REMOVAL OPTION • Policy and Legal Framework • Nationality • Strategy • Type of Cooperation • Legal Framework • Possibility of Anti-Satellite Weapon Applicability • Technical Framework • Technology Readiness Level (TRL) • Economic Framework • Definition of Business • Estimated Cost per Mission (ECM) • Estimate Cost per kg Deorbited (ECD) SCORECARD METHOD 5/15/2014 12IN SUPPORT OF THE UNITED NATIONS PROGRAMME ON SPACE APPLICATIONS
  13. 13. CONCEPTUALIZING AN ECONOMICALLY, LEGALLY AND POLITICALLY VIABLE ACTIVE DEBRIS REMOVAL OPTION • CleanSpaceOne • Swiss Space Center project • Target: Swiss nanosatellite • Technology still in development • ADR demonstrator mission in 2018 • ~ €12 million CASE STUDY 5/15/2014 13IN SUPPORT OF THE UNITED NATIONS PROGRAMME ON SPACE APPLICATIONS Source: EPFL
  14. 14. CONCEPTUALIZING AN ECONOMICALLY, LEGALLY AND POLITICALLY VIABLE ACTIVE DEBRIS REMOVAL OPTION • Swiss Space Center is supported by national Ministry of Education but not included in the decision making process of the country • Scorecard result: poor (7 out of 36 points available) However: Swiss Foreign-Policy Strategy 2012-2015 is based on the following fundamental principle, i.e. rule of law, universality, neutrality, solidarity and responsibility and stability implemented by way of international cooperation Although Switzerland is not a spacefaring country, it looks like it could be a suitable country to start active debris removal initiatives, which deal with security and complicated legal issues CASE STUDY 5/15/2014 14IN SUPPORT OF THE UNITED NATIONS PROGRAMME ON SPACE APPLICATIONS
  15. 15. CONCLUSION
  16. 16. CONCEPTUALIZING AN ECONOMICALLY, LEGALLY AND POLITICALLY VIABLE ACTIVE DEBRIS REMOVAL OPTION • Started exploring an economically, politically, and legally viable way forward for ADR concepts • Proposed method of evaluation based on a scorecard applied then to a case study • Detailed analysis of the economic factors to justify ADR missions • Expansion of scorecard and new case studies will be considered. CONCLUSION AND NEXT STEPS 5/15/2014 16IN SUPPORT OF THE UNITED NATIONS PROGRAMME ON SPACE APPLICATIONS
  17. 17. THANK YOU! 5/15/2014 17

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