Space Law: Legal Restraints on the Commercialization and Development of Outer Space
54 Pages Posted: 31 Jul 2020
Date Written: 1996
Although the United States has landed on the moon and placed its flag on its surface, the United States cannot (nor any other nation or entity) own the moon or any part of it. This includes all other planets, asteroids, and other celestial bodies such as comets. International space law and domestic law following it, prohibit appropriation of celestial property. It is this prohibition and the uncertainty in the limited property rights that stifle the commercialization and industrialization of outer space. Section II of this Note provides a basic overview of space law. Section lII demonstrates how space law restrains the commercial development of outer space. Section IV reveals the little-known, but highly lucrative, space industry that exists today. Section V examines what the industry could be if it were to exist under a legal regime that promotes investment and legal certainty in space. Finally, Section VI provides some suggested changes in space law that will pave the road towards the infinite rewards which may be reaped from the commercialization of space.
Keywords: Space Law, Development, Outer Space, Technology, Air and Space Law
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation