What’s Happening in Space Policy November 19-December 2, 2023

What’s Happening in Space Policy November 19-December 2, 2023

Here is SpacePolicyOnline.com’s list of space policy events for the next TWO weeks, November 19-December 2, 2023 and any insight we can offer about them. The House and Senate are in recess this week except for pro forma sessions and will be back the week of November 27.

During the Week

Whew!  What a week that was. Too, too busy, but with good results. Congress passed a new Continuing Resolution to keep the government open till early next year, SpaceX got further on its second Starship test flight than on the first, and so much more.

The reward is a bit of a rest for those of us in the United States as we celebrate Thanksgiving. We have only two U.S. events on this week’s list, both of them tomorrow (Monday) so we can relax for the rest of the week. Thanksgiving Day itself is Thursday and government offices will be closed.

Wayne Hale will chair the NAC-HEO meeting on Monday, his last in that capacity.

First is an all-day meeting of the NASA Advisory Council’s Human Exploration and Operations Committee. This is the second half of their two-day meeting (the first was on Friday) and will focus on the Space Operations Mission Directorate. This is Wayne Hale’s last meeting as chair of NAC-HEO. He said on Friday that he’s retiring from consulting and stepping aside from the committee after 10 years. Wayne is one-of-a-kind and everyone will miss his calm leadership while reminding everyone of the need to learn from the past and avoid complacency. We certainly hope he will continue his excellent blog and keep an eye on NASA’s human spaceflight program. His wisdom is irreplaceable.

In the afternoon, the Mitchell Institute will hold a webinar to release a new policy paper on space-based environmental monitoring. As the description says: “The ability to employ forces, launch munitions, and coordinate actions in the terrestrial battlespace depends on environmental conditions. However, the weather mission is often taken for granted, and the current space-based weather satellites are old, fragile, and in dire need of reset.”  The Institute’s Tim Ryan will discuss his new paper, Winds of Change: Environmental Monitoring for an Era of Peer Competition, with Col. Patrick Williams, Director of Weather for the U.S. Air Force and Lt. Col. Joseph Maguadog, Materiel Leader for EO/IR Weather Systems at Space Systems Command.

That’s it for U.S. events this week.  The 2023 U.K. Space Conference is taking place in Belfast with a top notch set of speakers including ESA Director General Josef Aschbacher and other government and industry leaders. We don’t see any mention of a virtual option, though.

We’ll be right back into the thick of things the week of November 27 when Congress returns and continues to try and pass both FY2024 and supplemental appropriations bills, the FY2024 National Defense Authorization Act, and other legislation. Agencies and organizations will resume their usual cadence of meetings.

We’re listing the ones we know about below and expect more to be announced between now and next Sunday. We’re not going to talk about those today, though. Instead we’ll keep this short and sweet and simply wish everyone a very Happy Thanksgiving.

The events we know about for the next two weeks as of Sunday morning, November 19, are shown below. Check back throughout the weeks for others we learn about later and add to our Calendar or changes to these.

Monday, November 20

Tuesday-Thursday, November 21-23

Thursday, November 23

Tuesday-Wednesday, November 28-29

Tuesday-Thursday, November 28-30

Wednesday-Thursday, November 29-30

Wednesday-Friday, November 29-December 1

Thursday, November 30

Friday, December 1

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