Journal of Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics Social Sciences Edition ›› 2021, Vol. 34 ›› Issue (3): 134-141.DOI: 10.13766/j.bhsk.1008-2204.2021.0044

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Development of Mega-Constellations and Modern Space Governance

ZHANG Yi'nan1, XU Jingjing2, YUAN Jun1, LYU Shuo1, WANG Jilian1   

  1. 1. China Academy of Space Technology, Beijing 100094, China;
    2. Beijing Institute of Space Science and Technology Information, Beijing 100094, China
  • Received:2021-02-22 Published:2021-06-08

Abstract: Low orbit mega-constellations, such as Starlink, have grown rapidly and providing cutting-edge satellite Internet commercial services with government support. Because the use of a large number of precious space frequency and orbital resources increased the environmental risk of space debris and posed a number of serious challenges to space governance, e.g., frequency and orbital resources are owned by few countries, it is impossible for emerging players to fairly explore and utilize low-earth orbit resources. Current rules are insufficient to control the risk of increased space debris and in-orbit collisions. In this paper, from the perspective of a community of shared future for mankind, the problems and impacts caused by the rapid development of mega-constellations were examined, and suggestions for modern space governance were put forward to promote the equitable exploration and utilization of low orbit resources. It is suggested that the applicability of the principle of equitable access to low earth orbit should be discussed, the standards for the end of life of satellites should be widely adopted and the development of space traffic management should be promoted.

Key words: modern space governance, mega-contellations, frequency assignments and orbital slots, space debris, space traffic management

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