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Space Mining and Its Regulation

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  • © 2017


  • Disseminates all the relevant information about space natural resources missions from various countries and their legal aspects, both international and national
  • Uses evidence-based information from the space missions of all the key space-faring nations, with systematic description of missions and regulatory regimes followed by critical analysis
  • Written by leading international experts in space law
  • Includes supplementary material:

Part of the book series: Springer Praxis Books (PRAXIS)

Part of the book sub series: Astronautical Engineering (ASTROENG)

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About this book

This book addresses the complex technical challenges presented by remote space mining in terms of robotics, remote power systems, space transport, IT and communications systems, and more. It also addresses the difficult oversight and regulatory issues that face states and non-state enterprises that would take on the perilous task of obtaining natural resources from the Moon and asteroids.


An increasing number of countries are becoming involved in space-related activities that were previously carried out primarily by the United States and the USSR (now the Russian Federation). How these regulatory endeavors might be handled in international treaties, standards, codes of conduct or other means have become a truly international political issue. And there is yet another issue.

In the past, space activities traditionally fell under the exclusive domain of government. But the last few years have seen the emergence of the private sector of "space entrepreneurs." This poses many challenges for the pre-existing governance regimes and state-based conceptions of international law. This book examines the adequacies and ambiguities in treaty provisions and national laws and in currently accepted practices involving the growing exploration and exploitation of space-based natural resources.

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Table of contents (12 chapters)

Authors and Affiliations

  • Institute of Air and Space Law, McGill University, MONTREAL, Canada

    Ram S. Jakhu

  • Executive Board, International Association for the Advancement of Space Safety, Arlington, USA

    Joseph N. Pelton

  • Pan African University, African Union Commission, Addis Ababa, Canada

    Yaw Otu Mankata Nyampong

About the authors

Prof.  Ram S. Jakhu is Associate Professor at the Institute of Air and Space Law, Faculty of Law, McGill University, Montreal, Canada, where he teaches and conducts research in international space law, law of space applications, law of space commercialization, government regulation of space activities, law of telecommunications and Canadian communications law, and public international law. He is a member of the Global Agenda Council on Space of the World Economic Forum and a Fellow as well as the Chairman of the Legal and Regulatory Committee of the International Association for the Advancement of Space Safety (IAASS). In 2007, he received a “Distinguished Service Award” from the International Institute of Space Law for significant contributions to the development of space law. He is managing editor of the Space Regulations Library series and a member of the editorial boards of the Annals of Air and Space Law and of the German Journal of Air and Space Law. He served as the first Director of the Master’s Program of the International Space University, Strasbourg, France, 1995–1998. He is a widely published author and editor of an award-winning book, National Regulation of Space Activities. His academic degrees include a B.A. as well as an LL.B. from Panjab University, an LL.M. also from Panjab University in International Law, an LL.M. from McGill University in Air and Space Law, and a Doctor of Civil Law (on Dean’s Honours List) from McGill University in Law of Outer Space and Telecommunications.                    

Dr. Joseph N. Pelton currently serves as a member of the Executive Board of the International Association for the Advancement of Space Safety. He is the former Chairman of the Board of Trustees and Vice President and Dean of the International Space University as well as the Director Emeritus of the Space and Advanced Communications Research Institute (SACRI) at George Washington University. Dr. Pelton also served as Director of the Accelerated Masters of Science Program in Telecommunications and Computers at the George Washington University from 1998 to 2005. Dr. Pelton was the founder of the Arthur C. Clarke Foundation and remains as the Vice Chairman on its Board of Directors. Pelton is a widely published and award winning author with over 30 books written or co-authored or co-edited with colleagues. His book Global Talk was nominated for a Pulitzer and won the Eugene Emme literature award. Dr. Pelton is a full member of the International Academy of Astronautics, an Associate Fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) and a Fellow of the International Association for the Advancement of Space Safety (IAASS). He was the Founding President of the Society of Satellite Professional International (SSPI) and a member of the SSPI Hall of Fame. He has served as President of the Comsat Alumni andRetirees Association (COMARA). Until recently he was as President of the International Space Safety Foundation. He received his degrees as follows: BS from the University of Tulsa, MS from the New York University and his doctorate from Georgetown University.                

Dr. Yaw O. M. Nyampong is working as Senior Legal Officer, Pan African University, African Union Commission, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. He also served as the Executive Director (Academic Associate) of the Centre for Research in Air and Space Law, McGill University, Montreal, Canada. From 2010 to 2013, he was  post-doctoral research fellow at the Faculty of  Law where his research focuses on the environmental aspects of space exploration and use, particularly how to address the problem of space debris.  Aside from his academic laurels and research experience, Dr. Nyampong has extensive practical experience in the fieldof air and space law, having worked as an international consultant on a number of air law-related assignments for the International Civil Aviation Organization and the World Bank Group. Dr. Nyampong has attended and spoken at numerous air and space law workshops and conferences around the world and has written and published several scholarly articles and book chapters on issues of contemporary relevance in the field.  He holds both a Doctor of Civil Law (DCL) degree and a Master of Laws (LL.M) degree in Air and Space Law from the Institute of Air and Space Law, McGill University, Montreal, Canada. He also holds Qualifying Certificate in Professional Law from the Ghana School of Law (2000), and a Bachelor of Laws (LL.B) degree from the Faculty of Law, University of Ghana, Legon (1998). He is a member in good standing of the Ghana Bar Association and the Law Society of Upper Canada (Ontario).  

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