The Space Licensing and Safety Office (SLASO) implements the regulatory and safety regime for space activities in Australia and by Australians overseas. The primary legislation governing civil space activities in Australia is contained in the following documents:
The Act and Regulations allow the Australian Government to regulate commercial space activities in Australia and by Australians worldwide. The regulatory regime implements certain Australian obligations entered into under UN Space Treaties and other specific space cooperation treaties. These obligations include, for example, the registration of Australian space objects, and liability commitments should an Australian space object cause damage.
Departmental Role and Current Achievements
SLASO has responsibility for administering the provisions of the Act and Regulations and for the ongoing development of subsidiary regulations and guidance material. SLASO is headed by a Director who is responsible for coordinating these regulatory requirements with other government agencies to ensure civil space activities do not jeopardise public safety, property, the environment, Australia’s national security, foreign policy or other international obligations.
Since the establishment of the SLASO in June 2001, a number of space activities have been approved - two Hyshot launches at Woomera, the FedSat micro-satellite, the Optus C1 and three Optus D-series satellites.
SLASO also authorised/approved the return of the Japanese Hayabusa Spacecraft on Sunday 13 June 2010. Hayabusa was launched from Japan in 2003 to rendezvous with the Itokawa asteroid in 2005 and return a sample of the asteriod. The sample return capsule made a safe landing at the Woomera Prohibited Area and its contents will assist scientists in identifying the origins and evolution of the solar system.
Guidelines for Applicants
More specific information on regulatory requirements and how to apply for approval to engage in regulated space activities can be found in the Guidelines for Applicants section.
If you would like any further information on Australia's space licensing and safety regime, please contact the Department of Industry and Science.