Will Congress extend its moratorium on private spaceflight regulation?
closes Oct 1

Executive summary: https://www.axios.com/2023/01/03/private-human-spaceflight-regulations

Report to Congress: https://www.faa.gov/sites/faa.gov/files/DRAFT%20RTC%20Safety%20Framework%20for%20Commercial%20HSF%20Activities.pdf

Previously extended by the the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012 and the Commercial Space Launch Competitiveness Act.

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parhizj avatar
JRPbought Ṁ50 of YES



A federal moratorium on commercial spaceflight safety regulations should be extended to support more innovation in the space sector, U.S. Senator Ted Cruz said on Wednesday, ahead of the scheduled expiration of a years-old ban on Oct. 1.


"It's very important that we don't sit on our hands and begin to prepare for the future," Kelvin Coleman, head of the FAA's commercial space office, said at the conference in Washington on Wednesday. He added an extension seemed likely.

"From what we're hearing, it'll probably get extended," he said.


parhizj avatar
JRPbought Ṁ10 of NO

Plenty of lobbying for an extension ... but will it fail because of hyper-partisanship and short time frames?



It’s unclear if the current restriction can be extended. The House and Senate have been working on their versions of reauthorization legislation for the FAA, but neither currently includes any language about the learning period. The House Science Committee is working on a separate commercial space bill that could address the issue. However, any bill faces long odds of passage before Oct. 1.

“We have a divided Congress, so the ability to move an extension through may be a bit challenging this year,” said Caryn Schenewerk, president of CS Consulting who previously worked on regulatory issues for Relativity Space and SpaceX, during the webinar. Failure to achieve an extension, she said, may be less of an active decision by Congress than a side effect of broader debates between the Republican-led House and Democratic-led Senate.


2 replies
parhizj avatar
JRPbought Ṁ30 of NO

@parhizj 74 days until Oct. 1. I think there isn't enough time... so I am increasing my NO bet.

parhizj avatar
JRPsold Ṁ68 of NO

@parhizj Selling off shares for liquidity....

parhizj avatar
JRPbought Ṁ20 of NO


"The FAA has suggested a long list of indicators to assess the readiness of the commercial industry, including questions about the reason people want to buy tickets to space, the size of the tourism industry, and the extent to which standards have been developed. Most people interviewed, though, thought these indicators were vague and unhelpful—”perhaps deliberately so,” the report notes."

"the research team made five recommendations:

  1. Allow the moratorium to end in October as currently planned

  2. Allot enough funding to the FAA to effectively develop new regulations

  3. Proceed with Space Aerospace Rulemaking Committees

  4. Continue to develop voluntary consensus standards across the industry

  5. Consider limited informal rulemaking"

Based on this I'm betting NO, but since I only spent a tiny amount of time researching this so far I am betting conservatively at the moment. Part of this bet is based on me guessing this will not be a strongly bi-partisan issue given solely how much of a lightning rod Elon Musk is, and I anticipate it won't end up passing -- but I don't have any actual information on this -- only intuition.

On another note, I find it odd that rockets might be regulated going into space before submersibles diving in international waters.