Panelists representing the Air Line Pilots Association, United Launch Alliance, Blue Origin and SpaceX recently testified before the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee on Aviation about the necessity of government regulatory reform in commercial space transportation.
Teslarati reported Tuesday that the panelists identified two primary areas where timely government action is needed, namely: the inclusion of launch vehicle operations in air traffic control protocols promulgated by the Federal Aviation Administration and the slow pace of space launch licensing.
The FAA currently imposes a no-fly zone during rocket launches, but the required no-fly zone lasts longer than the time it takes for a spacecraft to traverse the controlled airspace.
Approval for space launch licenses, on the other hand, can take more than 200 days, and modifications to license applications can result in launch providers having to repeat the entire process.
Rep. Rick Larsen, D-Wash., a ranking member of the aviation subcommittee, concurred with the witnesses’ remarks about spaceflight regulatory reform, describing the matter as urgent.
Larsen also requested that an informal meeting be convened immediately following the hearing to discuss the issue further.