3.5 Emerging Commercial Space Transportation Capabilities and Space Weather

Monday, 24 January 2011: 5:00 PM
4C-3 (Washington State Convention Center)
John J. Sloan, DOT, Washington, DC

As commercial space transportation capabilities increase, the number of users of space weather services will also increase. From suborbital to orbital space flight and from cargo to human space flight participants, space launch companies are expanding into new missions and markets. Operations in the near future are not only about reaching orbit but include activity in orbit and reentry back to the Earth. New companies, privatization and new possibilities in support of government civil space exploration are a part of this trend.

This presentation will identify growing capabilities in commercially operated space transportation systems and their potential needs for space weather services. It will also identify future missions that may involve deep space operations outside of low Earth orbit where additional space weather hazards will need to be addressed. Responsibility for making sure U.S. commercial launch and reentry operations are safe rests with the Federal Aviation Administration's Office of Commercial Space Transportation. The integration of multiple sources of information for safe operations in space-- including space environment, space traffic management, and collision avoidance-- is a future challenge for the FAA and all future operators in space.

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