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030452 KU Commercial Aspects of Space Law (2016S)

3.00 ECTS (2.00 SWS), SPL 3 - Rechtswissenschaften
Continuous assessment of course work


max. 35 participants
Language: English


Classes (iCal) - next class is marked with N

Attendance: Conference on space Policy, 09.04.2016, 9-13h, Topfloor Juridicum

Tuesday 05.04. 17:00 - 20:00 Seminarraum SEM52 Schottenbastei 10-16, Juridicum 5.OG
Wednesday 06.04. 17:00 - 20:00 Seminarraum SEM52 Schottenbastei 10-16, Juridicum 5.OG
Thursday 07.04. 17:00 - 20:00 Hörsaal U12 Schottenbastei 10-16, Juridicum, KG1
Tuesday 12.04. 17:00 - 20:00 Seminarraum SEM62 Schottenbastei 10-16, Juridicum 6.OG
Wednesday 13.04. 17:00 - 20:00 Seminarraum SEM62 Schottenbastei 10-16, Juridicum 6.OG
Thursday 21.04. 17:00 - 18:30 PC-Raum 1 Schenkenstraße 8-10, 1.UG


Aims, contents and method of the course

This course examines the underlying legal principles that regulate the use, exploration and exploitation of space, and how International Law can and should be applied to the many different State and private commercial uses of outer space. It expands on the existing international legal regime - the five United Nations Space Treaties and key Declarations of Principles related to space activities, as well as a number of domestic regulatory systems and then focuses on specific issues of contemporary interest.


1. The Course will be taught by way of 5 x 3 hour in-class seminars (17.00-20.00 on 5, 6, 7, 12 and 13 April) plus a site visit to attend the UNCOPUOS LSC Meeting at VIC (10.00-13.00 on 11 April).

2. Students will be required to prepare for the classes by completing the assigned readings before each class.

It is anticipated that the Course will enable students to:

1. Understand the historical evolution of the existing international legal regime regulating the use and exploration of outer space.

2. Engage in critical discussion of specific problems arising from the assigned readings

3. Analyse and examine the details of the five international Treaties and the various United Nations Principles which regulate certain activities in space.

4. Critically consider the problems and ambiguities within the existing legal regime.

Assessment and permitted materials

1. Short in-class test on 12 April 2016 (20% of the final mark)

2. Final written short answer exam on 21 April 2016 (10 questions - 90 minutes - 80% of the mark)

3. Students may bring a copy the Space Law Treaties and Resolutions to both exams.

Minimum requirements and assessment criteria

Students are required to attend at least 4 out of the 6 scheduled classes, including the visit to the UNCOPUOS LSC Meeting.

Examination topics

1. The fundamental principles of international space law including responsibility/liability, peaceful purposes, non-appropriation, jurisdiction and control
2. The space law treaties / major soft-law instruments

3. The exploitation of space natural resources / property rights in space
4. The needs of developing countries
5. The military uses of outer space
6. The utilisation of small satellites
7. Dispute resolution mechanisms
8. The need for national space law
9. The space environment / long-term sustainability
10. The use of insurance for commercial space activities
11. Space tourism

Reading list

1. Steven Freeland, ‘Fly Me to the Moon: How Will International Law Cope with Commercial Space Tourism (2010) 11:1 Melbourne Journal of International Law 90-118

2. Steven Freeland, For Better or For Worse? The Use of ‘Soft Law within the International Legal Regulation of Outer Space (2011) XXXVI Annals of Air and Space Law 409-445

3. Steven Freeland, The Development of National Space Law in Steven Freeland, Rada Popova and Solomon Passy (eds), Contemporary Issues for National and International Space Law: Commentary and Source Materials (AMG Publishing, 2012) 12-35

4. Steven Freeland, The 2008 Russia / China Proposal for a Treaty to Ban Weapons in Space: A Missed Opportunity or an Opening Gambit (2008) 51 Proceedings of the Colloquium on the Law of Outer Space 261-271

5. Steven Freeland, Theres a Satellite in My Backyard! Mir and the Convention on International Liability for Damage Caused by Space Objects (2001) 24:2 University of New South Wales Law Journal 462-484

6. Steven Freeland and Ulrike Bohlmann, The Regulation of Space Activities and the Space Environment in Shawkat Alam, Md Jahid Hossain Bhuiyan, Tareq M.R. Chowdhury and Erika J. Techera (eds), Routledge Handbook of International Environmental Law (Routledge, 2013) 375-391

7. Steven Freeland and Ram Jakhu, Article II of the 1969 Outer Space Treaty’ in Stephan Hobe, Bernhard Schmidt-Tedd and Kai-Uwe Schrogl (eds), Cologne Commentary on Space Law, Volume I Outer Space Treaty (Carl Heymanns Verlag, 2009) 44-63

8. Steven Freeland and Ram Jakhu, The Relationship between the United Nations Space Treaties and the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties& (2012) Proceedings of the International Institute of Space Law, 375-391

9. Steven Freeland and Ram Jakhu, What Human Rights Got to do with Outer Space? Everything! (2014) Proceedings of the International Institute of Space Law 365-380

10. Steven Freeland, The Laws of War in Outer Space’ in Kai-Uwe Schrogl et al (eds), Handbook of Space Security (Springer, 2015) 81-112

11. Steven Freeland, A Delicate Balance: Regulating Micro Satellite Technology in a Big Satellite World (2014-2015) 18:1 University of Western Sydney Law Review 1-18

Association in the course directory

Last modified: Fr 31.08.2018 08:47