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FCC’s Jessica Rosenworcel: New Space Age Requires New Rules, Innovation & Sustainability

2 mins read

U.S. leadership in the new space age and economy can be secured if the government implements new rules, fosters innovation and implements sustainability initiatives, according to Federal Communications Commission Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel.

Speaking at the Global Aerospace Summit in Washington, D.C., Rosenworcel described a new era in space exploration that is being ushered and influenced by novel technologies, companies and business models. 

“Every day we see how the expansion of new space-based activities can remake our world—and that there is work to do to support all of this activity in our highest altitudes. I believe the United States must lead in this new space age and emerging space economy,” she remarked in a speech published Wednesday.

The FCC chair noted that the agency’s recently announced Space Innovation Initiative would help position the country at the forefront of space exploration. 

She discussed the agency’s three lines of effort, the first of which is the establishment of specific rules to regulate commercial space tourism, entrepreneurship, and technologies such as crowd-funded satellites and low-Earth orbit mega-constellations.

The FCC will also promote innovations such as in-space servicing, assembly, and manufacturing capabilities, as well as spectrum sharing and band upgrading. 

Rosenworcel stressed the importance of sustainability practices in preserving space exploration. As an example, she highlighted her recent proposal to reduce the deorbiting period of satellites from 25 to within 5 years of completing their missions.

“Sixty years ago President Kennedy announced that we would go to the moon. It was not going to be easy. But the awe of that effort stays with us even today. That is why we are setting the foundation—or maybe I should say the launchpad—to go even farther and expand the opportunities in space. I look forward to working with all of you to make it happen,” Rosenworcel added.

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