Tuesday, May 29, 2018

US Commerce Department Releases More Details on New "Space Administration"

          By Henry Stewart

The US Department of Commerce has released more information on its plans to establish what it calls a Space Policy Advancing Commercial Enterprise (SPACE) Administration within the department to streamline Federal government oversight of commercial space activities.

Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross. Photo c/o US Department of Commerce.

As outlined in the May 27th, 2018 Space News post, "Commerce Department to create “SPACE Administration,” the new department will:
...incorporate the Commercial Remote Sensing Regulatory Affairs office and the Office of Space Commerce, currently part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). 
The department was already planning such a consolidation of the offices, which would be moved out of NOAA and directly under Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross.
Ross has also directed Commerce Department agencies that deal with space in one fashion or another to assign a liaison to the new office. Those offices include the Bureau of Industry and Security, International Trade Administration, National Institute of Standards and Technology, NOAA and National Telecommunications and Information Administration.
Secretary Ross discussed his new role in the May 25th, 2018 New York Times post, "That Moon Colony Will Be a Reality Sooner Than You Think." According to Ross:
On Thursday, President Trump signed Space Policy Directive 2, which will make important strides toward modernizing our outdated space policies. 
These changes include creating a new office, the Space Policy Advancing Commercial Enterprise Administration, within my office to oversee coordination of the department’s commercial space activities, establishing a “one-stop shop” to work on behalf of the budding private space sector.
According to Ross, "a unified departmental office for business needs will enable better coordination of space-related activities."
When companies seek guidance on launching satellites, the Space Administration will be able to address an array of space activities, including remote sensing, economic development, data-purchase policies, GPS, spectrum policy, trade promotion, standards and technology and space-traffic management. The new office will also enable the department to manage its growing responsibilities in space.
According to the Space News post, the new office will require additional legislation in order to become a permanent fixture in Washington.
A House bill passed in April, the American Space Commerce Free Enterprise Act, already includes some of those measures. The Senate is planning its own commercial space bill but has not introduced it yet.

Henry Stewart is the pseudonym of a Toronto based aerospace writer

No comments:

Post a Comment

Support our Patreon Page