The prospect of future on-orbit servicing missions and rendezvous operations represent activities of particular interest for the commercial space sector given the fact that these missions have the potential to increase the viability of and benefits from space activities. When the relevant market conditions and business case, as well as technologies, become viable, they will constitute major elements for space actors as a potential path toward the life extension of space assets, thus lowering costs and increasing profits. Contractual law represents a way to address several issues related to consent to engage with someone else’s space object, the allocation of risk, liability of the parties involved and mission parameters. This article considers those elements in relation to OOS (onorbit satellite servicing) and RPO (rendezvous and proximity operation) missions. In that sense, it addresses the possible way to adapt some standard contractual clauses in order to respond to the challenges that flow from these new activities. As an example, it analyzes the case of the European Space Agency and the possible changes to the general clauses and conditions for ESA contracts.
|Journal||Zeitschrift fuer Luft- und Weltraumrecht|
|Publication status||Published - 2020|