6 thoughts on “The “S” Word

  1. Brock

    Fear.

    The timid souls shy away from great and difficult things, because they are comfortable doing what’s been done before (“Apollo on steroids”).

  2. Thomas Matula

    Given what NASA was done with a goal of “space access” and lowering the cost of space flight over the last 40 years do you really want to trust them with the goal of space settlement?

    Or make it a government policy so government money with government strings attached is spent on it?

    Now I could see pushing for a few laws to make space settlement easier for private organizations, for example

    Expanding the Deep Seabed Hard Mineral Resources Act (U.S.C. §1401 et seq.) to apply to space mining. or crafting a similar law for space.

    Zero G, Zero Taxes

    Recognizing that any NEO that has its orbit altered in a controlled fashion is not a Celestial Body. Instead it belongs to the entity that altered it orbit. (Talk about solving the NEO impact problem, you not only get to save Earth but you get a few trillions in assets as well.)

    A space settlement act modeled on the Northwest Ordnance model to outline a clear path for space settlements to become independent nations with automatic recognition by the U.S. government when they achieve clear milestones in terms of population, self governance, etc.

    Negotiating an exemption from the Nuclear Test Ban Treaty for nuclear devices designed and developed for astro-engineering or propulsion purposes.

    You know, the type of action that would actually be useful for space settlement instead of the current policy of turning New Space into another entitlement program. And wouldn’t cost the government any real money to do.

    1. Rand Simberg Post author

      Given what NASA was done with a goal of “space access” and lowering the cost of space flight over the last 40 years do you really want to trust them with the goal of space settlement?

      Why are you asking me if I “really” want to do something that I never said I wanted to do at all? More reading comprehension problems?

  3. ken anthony

    Space attorneys will have a new incentive to sort out ownership issues about space resources.

    Exactly what you do not want. History says, claim it, then defend it. This does not require lawyers (or the U.N. which is positioning itself to determine who may get what.)

    Defending a claim may never require, and would even be unlikely to ever occur, a military defense if done right. A group all defending a single charter for reasonable claims is all you need; without the need for any other political entity to give its blessing. It doesn’t even require every group to subscribe to the same charter.

  4. ken anthony

    I note that NASA taking the ‘space lawyer approach lost to Russia taking the ‘I claim the right to bring tourists on board the I.S.S. and what are you going to do about it approach.’

  5. gbaikie

    I think objective of our space policy, should be the establishment of markets in Space.
    A settlement is market place. A gas station is usually an important part of a settlement. A settlement generally in a collection of various markets- real estate, corner store, access to power grid, sewer, entertainment, and/or whatever.

    At the moment the burning need is not a settlement. What is needed is rocket fuel in space.
    Then what is needed is exploration of space. So explore moon and see if there is minable lunar water, which can made into rocket fuel.
    If you have already established a market for rocket fuel in space, then business will have market for the rocket fuel they make in space.
    And once making rocket fuel- somewhere around this location could place
    to do other stuff, and one forming a settlement from this point forward.

    So NASA should gear it’s itself towards using fuel depots, and these fuel depots should available to all parties wanting rocket fuel in space environment. These fuel depot locations may also be a beginning of settlement or sorts.
    Fuel depots could also be seen as part of a spaceport on Earth- your launch inclination has fuel depot at LEO in this inclination. So this could an advantage of your particular spaceport.
    It seems if we had more private launch site, that my of the launch site- the availability of rocket fuel in space after launching from earth.

    So on topic of settlement, why not have settlements on Earth that launch rockets into space? Perhaps first settlements is earth spaceports.

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