FAA plans for suborbital point-to-point transport

by | Nov 6, 2008 | Commercial human spaceflight, Space tourism, Spaceport, Suborbital | 0 comments

At the 29 October 2008 Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) COMmercial Space Transportation Advisory Committee (COMSTAC) meeting a John Sloan gave a presentation on the FAA’s office of commercial space transportation’s (AST) international strategy that includes preparations on future suborbital point to point  (SPTP) travel

As you can see Virgin Galactic and the Swedish Space Corporation figure prominently in the list. This will be due to the expected ITAR implications of operating SpaceShipTwo from Spaceport Sweden and to some degree the Swedish Space Corporaton’s longer term view of enabling SPTP

Interestingly the presentation goes on to say that the “emerging US government position” is that it is too early for international safety standards on human space flight, too early for an “ICAO for Space,” for which there is some justification (although IAASS won’t be too pleased) now but not for too long; however they do want to “bring international issues into United Nations process (Committee On Peaceful Uses of Outer Space)”

When I spoke to COPUOS a while ago they said they did not expect to be dealing with this until the industry is well and truly up and running. COPUOS could be a stepping stone to ICAO’s involvement for the simple reason that ICAO considers itself a member of the “family of UN organisations”

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