The space age is now more than 60 years old. Since the launch of Sputnik in October 1957 there have been remarkable achievements. Astronauts have gone to the Moon and returned. The Hubble and Chandra Telescopes have discovered new secrets of the Universe at its most remote reaches. The International Space Station has been deployed, and new rockets are being built to allow deep space exploration.

For decades, the advancement in space technology and space exploration has been spearheaded by the national space agencies. However, the most significant development in space activities in the last decade has been the emergence of private enterprise and commercialization as an important stimulant to the launch of a “New Space Age”. A number of high profile billionaire entrepreneurs are now bankrolling many of these new commercial space businesses. New space commercialization initiatives have become trailblazers in this remarkable new industry where the sky is no longer the limit. The New Space Age requires a new approach to safety and environmental regulations, which is neither the old government-driven set-up neither the hands-off approach preached by some irresponsible parties. Lowering the cost of access to space and sound competition are necessary factors for commercialization, but only safer and sustainable space operations can allow commercial space to fully develop and prosper.

The publication of IAASS Technical Committees Position Papers and of IAASS Reports to United Nations COPUOS is a means for the Association to express unbiased, expert-based positions on key issues in space safety and sustainability.

I believe in innovation and
that the way you get innovation
is you fund research and you
learn the basic facts.
Bill Gates