PREPARING FOR THE NEXT ADMINISTRATION:
A DISCUSSION OF DUAL PURPOSE SPACE TECHNOLOGIES
SPACE POLICY INSTITUTE, THE GEORGE WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY
JUNE 22ND, 2000
Prepared by Becky Jimerson
DR. JOHN M. LOGSDON, SPACE POLICY INSTITUTE-
In his welcoming remarks, Dr. Logsdon took note of the increasing and
important convergences among international affairs, national security, and
space policy. These convergences make discussions such as this at the
Space Policy Institute, as well as other forums for science and technology
policy, increasingly significant.
DR. RAY A. WILLIAMSON, SPACE POLICY INSTITUTE-
Dr. Williamson reflected that the study of
dual-purpose technologies must
incorporate knowledge from a broad range of specialties, and experts. The
key to productive examination of dual-purpose technologies is to bring the security and
space communities together. They each hold different expectations of the
technologies that both sectors shares. This symposium provides a chance to
set forth the security and civil space issues that will be important in
the near future. Technologies such as satellite communications, remote
sensing, and GPS, as well as launch vehicles, are developing rapidly and
have deep implications for U.S. economic, space, and security policy.
SPACE AND SECURITY POLICY IN THE 21ST CENTURY
MARK BERKOWITZ, DIRECTOR FOR SPACE POLICY, DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE
Examining space and security policy first necessitates an understanding of
the vision, objectives, guidelines, and implementation measures that
constitute policy-courses of action that are designed to influence future
related decisions. A policy articulates the need for capabilities. Policy,
doctrine, and strategy are not identical concepts, though the terms are
often used as though they are interchangeable.
HISTORICAL CONTEXT- The geopolitical realities of the Cold War
shaped the development and execution of space policy. Principles from the
Eisenhower Administration-the right to self-defense, the importance of
defense/security commitments to US allies, the separation of the national
security and civil space sectors, freedom of transit through space, and
sovereignty of space vehicles- molded US space policy. During the Cold
War, national policy focused on US-Soviet nuclear competition, and
peacetime nuclear deterrence. This focus led to the rise of a specialized
R&D subculture within defense, with tight security controls and also to
national security space assuming the highest priority. This prioritization
resulted in a government focus on developing leading edge technology to
support security objectives. US space policy has remained fairly
consistent, throughout numerous administrations, with space activities
recognized as a topic that requires presidential attention. Since the late
1950s, space policies have been evolutionary, rather than revolutionary,
building on maturity and experience. US leadership in space technology
emerged as a common thread with high priority in each administration.
EXTANT POLICY - In September 1996, the Clinton Administration
issued its national space policy. This was the first post-Cold War
assessment, and directed that the US maintain leadership by supporting a
strong, stable, balanced space program that serves national security and
other goals. This document sets out the vision and direction for conduct
of US space activities, in defense, intelligence, the civil sector,
interaction with commercial and intersector guidance on matters that cut
across government and private sectors. This document also deals with
foreign access to US remote sensing, nonproliferation, ballistic missiles/
ABM treaty, and the convergence of defense and civil weather satellites.
It is a broad umbrella document for issues and themes in US space policy.
KEY FACTORS AND TRENDS - Several key factors and trends have shaped
policy formulation over last decade. One key factor is the changing
international security environment, that is, the shift from a bipolar to a
multipolar international environment. As well, the current era is marked
by a diffusion of political, military, economic power, in which the United
States is left as the only superpower. Thus, today's national strategy has
shifted from a focus on the global challenge posed by the USSR, to
protecting US peace and prosperity through engagement and enlargement. The
goal is not containment, but democratic and economic engagement. Other
main characteristics of the post-Cold War era are the changes in resource
allocation and force structure. Defense funding has decreased by 30% since
1989, and forces have declined by 33%. At the same time, there have been
increased operational and personnel requirements, for the United States
has been involved in numerous foreign engagements, including peacekeeping
missions. These changes make space forces increasingly utilized and
valuable to US decision making and military operations. Space is a
practical, not just theoretical asset.
Today's rapid pace of innovation and resultant advancements in sensors,
computers, and communications technologies, have made it much easier to
gather, process, fuse, exploit, and disseminate information. As well,
today's non-nuclear weapons have greater range, penetration, accuracy, and
lethality than ever before. In the civil community, commercialization and
globalization of space technologies has grown. Increases in private sector
investment, and increasing commercial launches and revenues are changing
how space is approached by policymakers. Further, the private sector has
focused on value-added services. Intersector cooperation is also an
increasing, an increasingly significant trend, as the barriers between
sectors decrease, Such cooperation allows the military to adapt to
constrained budgets, improve coordination and integration, increase
government/private sector partnerships, and cooperate internationally.
Because the use of outer space remains expensive, nations, firms, and
other actors are beginning to pool their resources to access it more
effectively. The worldwide proliferation of space capabilities, including
technologies, space systems, and knowledge, has resulted in more nations
that are capable of accessing space. Hence, more nations are able to use
space in a military context- possibly posing a challenge to US defense
strategy and operations.
IMPLICATIONS- The ability to exploit the vantage point of space is
a vital US national interest, space has important roles in national
security, economic well-being, and the successful transition to
globalization. Space systems now provide one of the major components of a
global, national defense, information-based infrastructure. The
uninterrupted flow of information is key, and requires access to space and
space systems. Hence, the US armed forces are expected to be vigilant in
protecting space as a key area of national interest. Space technologies
enable the pursuit of a comprehensive military doctrine, and have key
roles in the national military strategy, as set forth in Joint Vision 2020.
Key capabilities such as deterrence and force projection depend on space
capabilities. Space capabilities help to sustain force posture, support
the credibility of threats, and, if deterrence fails, make US forces more
effective. Space capabilities are one of several essential high technology
force multipliers which increase combat power, and effectiveness of
History shows that no medium has ever remained a "sanctuary" from armed
conflict once it was used, even indirectly, for military purposes. This
suggests that there will be some degree of militarization of space. As
well, the expansion of commerce to new regions often leads to development
of military capabilities to protect economic interests. It is essential to
realize, therefore, that US space control is likely to be challenged in
various ways in the coming years. It is also essential to continue to
leverage partnerships, enhance intersector and international cooperation,
and find other ways to minimize the risk and cost of space activities.
Even as cooperation is pursued, however, it is important to keep defense
and security issues in mind. Cooperation, while generally positive, can
add to proliferation and the diffusion of space capabilities- trends which
must be monitored to ensure they do not damage US security.
CONCLUSIONS - The evolution of US
government policy on space is
guided by the interlocking desires for enhanced US prestige and influence,
stronger national security, and greater economic growth. It is very likely
that access and use of outer space will become even more important in
future years, emerging as an indisputable national interest. Trends such
as globalization, the growth and advancements of information technologies,
and the increasing use of space-based components of information systems
make space highly relevant to US interests. The United States cannot
afford to abandon use of space, or cede control of space, if vital US
interests are to be protected.
Questions and Answers
Question- When talking to commercial providers of satellite and
launch services about incorporating defense-oriented hardening and other
specifications into their hardware, they say that there are few threats,
and these modifications are not necessary or feasible within their
business plans. Do you have a comment on that?
Response- It is certainly true that, in general, the private sector
doesn't see protection from threats as key. Meeting defense requirements
is seen as too expensive, and unlikely to be necessary. There is a need to
build awareness in commercial sector that there may be threats, and to
provide incentives for commercial firms to meet defense needs.
Comment- The commercial sector has, so far, been more successful in
cooperating with NASA than with the Defense Department.
Response- This is true, and DOD is now working to improve relations
with the commercial sector. DOD is beginning to do more to leverage
cooperation with private firms.
Question- There is a lot of talk about transparency- do you believe
it is a credible factor in policy trends?
Response- Transparency is not an easy issue to address- there are
rarely easy yes or no answers to questions about transparency. Usually
transparency is a positive factor, because, in general, greater access to
information supports US principles. While transparency is usually better
for the United States than for its adversaries, there is, of course, a
need to ensure that increased transparency doesn't threaten US interests.
OPPORTUNITIES AND CHALLENGES OF DUAL-USE SPACE TECHNOLOGIES
GENERAL THOMAS MOORMAN JR., USAF (RET), VICE PRESIDENT BOOZ·ALLEN
General Moorman stated that he has a
long-term interest in space
commercialization, dual-use technologies, and national security. Indeed,
25 years ago, he worked on policy for the then secret National
Reconnaissance Office. The last 40 years have brought striking changes in
technologies and policies. For 40 years, activities in space have been
overwhelmingly the sphere of governmental and quasi-governmental actors.
Yet, in 1996, for the first time, commercial launches exceeded government
launches. More money is now being made from, and invested in, commercial
space than ever before, and there is a growing new commercial market for
Nevertheless, we must must mix a substantial dose of caution with this
optimism. Outer space is still expensive to access and a risky investment.
The failure of Iridium and the fact that the earlier predictions of 100
commercial launches a year proved overly optimistic have led to hesitancy
about the use of outer space. Considering commercial space today requires
examining the lessons learned from the mid-1990's, and trying to determine
what works, and what doesn't work in commercial space.
If policy-makers are to address the complexity of commercial space they
must first assess the current situation. Today, expectations are lower
than they were 5 years ago. Successes and failures have been quite
different than predictions- direct to home television has been an area of
rapid growth, but many of the new satellite communications ventures have
failed to live up to their promises. Remote sensing has advanced
technologically, but it remains to be seen whether these systems are
actually commercially viable. The growth of the GPS market seems more
secure, at least for GPS units and services. GPS units have become cheaper
and more popular, and GPS has increasingly been integrated with GIS. The
recent discontinuation of selective availability increases expectations
for GPS's commercial potential.
The second key task for policy-makers is to re-evaluate government
strategies for partnerships. In satellite communications, US government
funding has helped different programs to succeed. Yet, it has proved
difficult to balance government and commercial interests. Launch is
especially challenging because demand for launches is highly dependent on
fluctuations in satellite needs. In remote sensing, it is becoming obvious
that the greatest potential profit lies in the value-added sector-that is,
in the analysis leading to useful information, not in the imagery itself.
In the coming decades, government and industry must work as partners to
develop and utilize space systems. This means that both sides must be
willing to modify their strategies, and adapt their operational styles.
The need for governmental re-evaluation of partnerships is based, in large
part, upon the fact that, as the available federal budget for space
activities decreases, acting alone in space becomes increasingly
difficult. The government (civil, defense, and intelligence) and
industrial sectors all have unique capabilities. These sectors should
pursue their unique capabilities when possible, and benefit from each
others' expertise. The government will need some dedicated satellite
capacities; yet, many governmental needs for satellite services can be met
through appropriately constructed cooperative arrangements. There are
significant differences in the culture and terminology of the sectors,
differences that will have to be overcome in forming partnerships. Today,
industry wants to obtain funding from the government, but is largely
unwilling to accept governmental input concerning system design. However,
if the government is playing a major funding role, some oversight and
input should also be available. In the launch sector, new partnerships are
being pursued. One example of this is NASA's transfer of shuttle
operations to a private company.
It is likely that future years will see the creation of more systems
intended to serve both commercial and national security requirements. This
will require a philosophical change in the government, not only in the
mission offices, but also in regulatory organizations, as well as in
Congress. It is not possible- or necessary- to police everything- instead,
it is essential to focus on the major threats, and still allow free trade.
It is important to establish an export control regime that works for both
the government and private sectors, and work to create partnerships
between national security and commercial sectors. A history of
partnerships and trust will make it easier to deal with security issues if
they arise. It is essential to consider the financial health of this
industry- space ventures can and do fail, but investment in, and attention
to, the industry must continue. The next president must keep space as a
high priority, and encourage the growth of commercial space.
Interdependence between all aspects of space is an increasingly important
trend. Space policies must address and consider the various commercial
sectors, as well as national security space.
Questions and Answers
Question- Is there sufficient industrial base for a fully
commercial launch business?
Response- Today there is not yet such an industrial base. It is important
for the government to act as a partner in the launch business. The
government will have to manage this sector to a degree in order to
Question- Regarding the practice of buying on orbit (buying
completed and orbiting satellite systems), do you think there is a
connection between launch failures and lack of government oversight?
Response- The government still has an essential role in
guaranteeing range safety. With proper oversight, buying on orbit can be
safe and practical. It is possible for government and commercial interests
to work together for oversight and safety.
Question- Considering the convergence between space sectors, what
are your recommendations for the next administration concerning the
organization of space?
Response- First of all, it was a mistake to have done away with the
National Space Council. Today, conflicts between sectors are far too often
resolved based on the personalities of individuals, rather than within an
organizational framework. It is important for the government to guide
convergence between sectors, and to examine the organization and
management of national security space.
MERCHANTS AND GUARDIANS IN THE NEW MILLENNIUM- THE POLICY CHOICES
DR. SCOTT PACE, RAND
Outer space has proved to be a highly fluid medium. Today, the sectors
that make up commercial space are very different from earlier predictions.
The continuing theme, which encompasses such issues as export control,
missile proliferation, spectrum allocation, and the growing challenges of
dual-use aspects, is of tensions between public and private sectors. The
role of the government is no longer always clear.
This new conflict can be characterized as the conflict between merchants
and guardians. Merchants are characteristically flexible, concerned with
profits, able to deal with other cultures, and don't require history, or
common culture for interactions. Security is not a high priority in the
merchant culture. Guardians, on the other hand, tend to be hierarchical
and place a high value on tradition, loyalty and noncorruption. Guardians
are slower moving, and take the position that history matters, and that
trust should be built up over time. Innovation is not necessarily valuable
or desirable, from a guardian perspective.
These two different cultures result in very different perspectives,
priorities, and views of the spread of information. Merchants and
guardians do not balance the threat of information proliferation with
profits from information in the same way. The tensions between these two
groups are unavoidable, but must be dealt with, because the two groups are
linked, and are both part of modern national power. Guardians are
necessary for efficient functioning of merchants, for society and markets
are enabled by guardians and their rules. Merchants in turn provide the
wealth and resources necessary for the support of the guardians. If there
is, indeed, such a linkage, the question is how are we to encourage and
optimize interaction? The former National Space Council was valuable in
this respect because it forced representatives from different communities
together, and required them to interact with and learn from each other.
Today, there is a search for other forums in which to do this.
The merchants and guardians conflict is not restricted to the United
States. It can be seen in Japan, in Europe, with Galileo, and in the
Russian launch debates. Many international aspects of these tensions are
dealt with by organizations such as the International Telecommunication
Union (ITU), the World International Property Organization, various UN
agencies, and the World Trade Organization. The United States needs to
work with these agencies, many of which are centered in Geneva, not
Washington. This is especially necessary now, with the growth of dual-use
It is important for the United States to participate in multilateral
organizations, and develop rules for interacting with Europe, Russia,
China and other key players. To a large extent, the United States has
focused on missile proliferation, and has paid little attention to
maintaining stable and friendly relations with Europe in other areas of
space trade. US-European tensions have arisen over the allocation of radio
spectrum, encryption, privacy, and export controls, yet the United States
has not made these issues a high international priority. Decisions made in
foreign nations can and will impact both U.S. merchants and guardians.
Thus, it is essential to develop common values for space, and common
guidelines for dual-use systems in space.
The tension between merchants and guardians goes to very fundamental
questions about how to achieve security, prosperity, and freedom and is
part of the evolution of social structures and societal values. Preserving
and improving the international system and what we call Western values is
a necessary aspect of the continuation and development of space systems.
It is also necessary to remember that space policy issues touch on many
other political issues, both domestic and international. The United States
is, in many ways, fortunate because the US values of openness and
democracy are also characteristic of the the international development of
global space-based information systems and are necessary for the future
international exploration of space.
Questions and Answers
Question- You mentioned working with organizations in Geneva- what
about working with organizations in Vienna, with COPUOS (Committee on the
Peaceful Uses of Outer Space)? What role do you see for the UN and
Response- COPUS is still working to reform itself, and is still, to
a large extent, mired in past practices. However, the debate is beginning
to change as the importance of commercial activities are acknowledged.
COPUOS is starting to re-appraise the extant space treaties, to make them
more relevant to space activities today, and to move beyond the 1979 moon
treaty. COPUOS has played a helpful role in GPS discussions, and in
improving international awarness of the importance of GPS applicationsto
Question- To a large extent, the government has been able to step
out of Silicon Valley, to ease export controls and give up its early role
in the Internet. Why hasn't the government been able to step out of space
in a similar way?
Response- Computers have changed more rapidly than satellites have.
There will always be significant differences between the two industries,
for the ability to reach and operate in space is expensive and closely
linked to national security. However, export controls should probably
return to the interagency agreements of the early 1990s, where most
satellite technologies were regulated by the Commerce Department, and a
very few by the State Department. It may be necessary to create a broader,
more consistent space trade regime, which incorporates, not just
satellites, but other comparable technologies.
Question- Would you say that the success of the US delegation at
the recent ITU meeting was due to preliminary bilateral meetings?
Response- Preliminary bilateral meetings did play an important
role. However, cooperation with Congress, the State Department, and other
parts of the US government was just as important. Without cooperation
within the US community, setting up pre-meetings would have proved
impossible, and without cooperation and preparation, success at the
conference would not have been possible.
THE SPACE POLICY INSTITUTE'S DUAL-PURPOSE SATELLITE TECHNOLOGY
DR. RAY A. WILLIAMSON
In the interests of time, I will be very brief. In crafting the Space
Policy Institute's project on dual-purpose, space-related technologies, we
made the decision to deal with information technologies- with GPS,
satellite communications, and remote sensing in order to give our study
greater coherence. Programs such as NPOESS were not examined, and neither
were launch services-a classic example of both dual-use (i.e., some
components can be used to build missiles) and dual-purpose (designed for
both military and civil use) technology. Nevertheless, for the concluding
public event of the study, I thought it was important to examine these
technologies, in order to compare experience in these fields with those of
our central focus. I am delighted to be able to welcome experts in these
domains to our study, as their insights will contribute greatly to our
understanding of the relationship between civil and national security use
The tensions between merchants and guardians can be seen throughout this
field. One of the most striking features of this "Brave New World" is the
dramatic increase in global transparency. Commercially available
high-resolution imagery and other information technologies are redefining
what can be considered worthy of classification protection. Imagery of
places that were once off limits to the public is now for sale.
Transparency is inescapable, for good or ill. Policymakers here and abroad
are faced with answering the questions of what can and should be be done
to respond to a regime of increased transparency.
It is not yet clear what the global proliferation of space capabilities
means for US defense and security capabilities. The openness of the US
system has helped spread advanced technologies, and it would be naïve to
assume that other nations will not take advantage of the military utility
of these technologies. For example, nations are now buying, and will
continue to buy, imagery of their adversaries, thus providing nations that
lack indigenous high-resolution satellites easy access to this capability.
However, the ability to purchase imagery is not equivalent to the ability
to interpret and use that imagery to advantage. That is, there is a broad
disparity between access to a capability and the ability to utilize it
fully. Infrastructure and training are necessary to maximize complex
high-technology systems. The United States currently leads the world in
both possession and use of high-technology, dual-purpose systems. It has
helped other countries learn to use these capabilities, both intentionally
through outreach programs, and unintentionally through the openness of the
US system and the commercial marketplace.
Dr. Pace has skillfully laid out many of the tensions between the
merchants-the culture of commercial competition and business and the
guardians-the culture of caution, security, protection. While there will
always be tensions between the two sectors, they can also learn from one
another. Rather than attempting to limit access to technology and
information by instituting cumbersome technology transfer controls,
government officials need to take a lesson from successful commercial
firms, who maintain competitiveness by staying ahead technologically.
Retaining the ability to operate, lead, and profit requires flexibility,
and an enhancement of the relationship between innovation and
competitiveness. The US government cannot step back from the use of space
for defense, but must make sure its policies help- not hinder- the
commercial sector. On the other hand, advocates of commercial space
systems might benefit from a more careful examination of the risks of
increased dependence on outer space, especially if they wish to include
the security sector in their list of important customers.
Further, the United States must explore in detail the effects of the
commercial availability of satellite technologies on regional balances of
power. U.S. policymakers have focused in great detail on limiting the
proliferation of launch technology through the MTCR, for the most part
because of the fear that such technologies could be transferred to use in
missiles. In my view, they have not given sufficient attention to the
effects, for good and ill, of the proliferation of commercial satellite
technologies. In our examination of this important issue, we have found
that the broad availability of commercial communications satellites, GPS
receivers, and high resolution Earth observation data can both contribute
to, and undermine, regional stability, depending on the specific
situation. We have, for example, examined the effects of the prolferation
of commercial satellite technologies on the Mid East and on the Far East.
The time is too short to go into details about our findings, but it is
clear that U.S. policy generally needs to be highly flexible and crafted
to suit the particulars of the region and U.S. political, as well as
I look forward to the remaining
presentations and discussion, as they will
shed light on other aspects of the civil/commercial/national security
aspects of space and security policy. These inputs will, I am sure, be
extremely enlightening as we put together a final report for this
DISCUSSION, CHAIRED BY JOHN BAKER, RAND
JOHN BAKER- Through my time at the Space Policy Institute and now
at RAND, I have gained an appreciation for the challenge of forming a
durable, farsighted space policy. There is a marked incease in the
importance of outer space over the last fifty years. There are continuing
challenges in dealing with the changing nature of space endeavors and in
addressing the tensions between the merchants and guardians as well new
tensions between international and domestic space policy. The question,
then, is, where are we now in terms of policy toward dual-purpose space
technologies? The upcoming administration is likely to craft a new space
policy. What guidance can we give the new administration?
COMMENT- I am surprised at General Moorman's fairly pessimistic
assessment of the satellite industry. I see great growth in the satellite
industry, an increase in revenues, and the growth of several sectors. One
sector may be having problems, and the other sectors have been somewhat
hurt by this. The merchants and guardians dichotomy can be a useful tool.
The different mindsets (in the commercial and security communities) over
profit vs loss and risk vs security means that meeting national security
needs with commercial satellites requires careful coordination.
COMMENT- The growth in satellite industries is significant, but not
necessarily focused in the areas that the defense community would have
hoped. DOD will still have to invest money in developing new or upgraded
systems. Upgrading technology is a time-consuming process, especially in
the government and defense sectors. For example, because of requirements
for durability and security, adopting new ground-based terminals takes a
long time. Commercial and government markets have different developmental
JOHN BAKER- It is definitely not easy to see whether it is better
for the government to stay out (deregulate) or stay involved in, and guide
and invest in, the industry. Balancing the two options is necessary.
COMMENT- From a government perspective, profit is not the mission.
For example, any degree of commercialization raises the question of how
commercially viable remote sensing going to be. The government likely
needs to fund the development of value-added applications from remote
sensing in order to commercialize this industry.
JOHN BAKER- Are there are risks inherent in diffusion of these
technologies? The recent diffusion of high resolution imagery, GPS
equipment, the discontinuation of selective availability, and so on, may
not be surprising technological developments, particularly within the
space community, but they pose significant policy challenges, and may
constitute security risks. Are risks inevitable, or are there ways to deal
with, and minimize these risks? There is also the question of how to deal
with these issues on an international- not just domestic- scale.
COMMENT- Export controls seem short term by their very nature.
Maybe, instead of trying to delay the diffusion of technology, we should
focus on making the spread of technology a safer phenomenon. Just because
there is a spread of technology does not mean there will be problems with
such a proliferation.
COMMENT- It is important that the methods of dealing with the
spread of technologies are fitted both to the technologies themselves, and
to the nature of the governments of the nations we are trying to keep
information from. That is, the Soviet regime was extremely structured, and
the tight control within the USSR actually helped make US export controls
more effective. In a country without a strong central government or police
force, export controls will be less effective, because information will
spread within the nation much more rapidly. The key is to, somehow, shape
the policy environment so as to remove the incentives to proliferate.
COMMENT- One of the continued needs is to create the opportunities
for better interactions between merchants and guardians. The lack of
fluency in each others' worlds makes cooperation difficult.
COMMENT- That is a key point. General Moorman and other military
officials are given very few briefings on business plans, and whether
technologies are feasible in the commercial world.
COMMENT- In France, a way around this split has been to have
government people work for industry for 2 or 3 years, and then return to
the government. This allows them to gain experience in both the commercial
and governmental sectors. This program has allowed knowledge to circulate
better through the French system. Could a similar system work in the
COMMENTS/RESPONSES- In the United States, similar programs are
being tried, but it is far more difficult here. The line between
commercial and government is much more definite and strict in this
country. There are numerous rules which prevent that kind of circulation,
for fear of conflict of interest. There are certainly cultural differences
at work here. In Japan, for example, it is perfectly acceptable for the
Japanese government to invest in new technologies. The United States, with
its still clearly defined public-private split, needs to find other ways
to accomplish these goals. A number of US companies and government
agencies, such as the Aerospace Industries Association, are trying to
establish business-government exchanges.
COMMENT - One solution to the merchants and guardians conflict is
to always be developing even more advanced technologies, so that there are
always new technologies for the merchants to commercialize- without
damaging national security. There must be an investment in the
government's ability to stay ahead of commercializable technologies.
JOHN BAKER- Commercial space used to be dominated by a few firms, many of
which were American owned. Now, there are not just US firms, but
internationally owned firms, firms that constitute joint ventures among
different nations, and firms that partner with various governmental
agencies. All this adds to the increasing complexity of commercial space.
NPOESS- A DUAL-USE SUCCESS STORY?
PANEL DISCUSSION- CHAIRED BY DANA JOHNSON, RAND; JOHN
CUNNINGHAM, NPOESS PROJECT MANAGER; STANLEY SCHNEIDER,
ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR FOR TECHNOLOGY TRANSIITON, NPOESS
INTRO- DANA JOHNSON- NPOESS, the National Polar-Orbiting Operational Environmental Satellite
System, is a three-way partnership between NASA, DOD, and the
Department of Commerce (specifically NOAA). Its origins are found in the
drive to reinvent government, and the resultant calls for convergence and
cost reduction through convergence. The aim is to reduce costs and still
meet the needs of all the parties involved. NPOESS has to be able to
ensure operational environmental data, assure access, and to provide the
ability to deny access if necessary. NPOESS was based on the realization
that civil and military systems were already converging in usage and
technology so actually forcing their convergence into one system would be
an important money-saving step. Thus, this project represents the creation
of a space system capable fo serving bother civil and national security
needs, a difficult task indeed.
There are significant external constraints on this project. These include
the realities of the international security environment, various
commercial trends, and budgetary constraints. Barriers to convergence have
included differing user and data requirements, problems with lack of
support and accountability, differing organizational structures and
processes, cultural resistance to convergence, programmatic instability
and risk, difficulties in staffing, and the lack of adequate, consistent,
long-term stakeholder support.
The realization of NPOESS is far from complete, but it seems likely to be
successful. There have been several key aspects of this project which have
allowed convergences to occur. First was the establishment the Integrated
Program Office, and its development of metrics for success. It is
necessary to maintain budget stability, and continually re-evaluate and
adjust the division of tasks and funds. It is also necessary to put
constant efforts into maintaining stakeholder, administration, and
congressional support. There has been a strong focus on developing policy
metrics, on ensuring agency funding stability, on promoting international
cooperation, and on developing ties with the commercial sector.
JOHN CUNNINGHAM- NPOESS is a presidentially directed tri-agency
effort. The goal is to converge the DOD and NOAA polar-orbiting
environmental satellite programs, while incorporating new technologies
from NASA. NPOESS will replace the Defense Meteorological Satellite System
and the civilian Polar Earth Orbiting System. It is also meant to
encourage international cooperation, fulfill tasks of national importance,
and predict and analyze the weather in the ways required by both NOAA and
the military. The military's attitude toward weather has shifted over
recent years- now, the military does not just seek to cope with the
weather, but, rather, to anticipate and exploit it. The military's
satellites and NPOESS orbit over the poles, provide global coverage, and
gather a variety of data, not just weather.
This program is intended to take advantages of the strengths, and minimize
the weaknesses of each participant agency. Thus, NASA has the lead in the
development of advanced technologies, DOD has the lead in acquisition, and
NOAA/Commerce has the lead in operations, coordination, and management.
One key aspect of NPOESS is that the process of setting requirements, and
evaluating how well requirements are being met, is done outside of the
organization. Removing the evaluation of data needs from those immediately
involved in the project allows for more objective evaluation of NPOESS's
progress. Outside evaluation and feedback is absolutely essential to a
project like this.
More and more satellites are being flown, for a variety of purposes.
Today, there are four operational polar satellite systems. By 2003, the
United States plans to have three satellites in orbit, and Europe to have
one. By 2008, we expect to operate only two converged US satellites, and
one European satellite. An additional aspect of NPOESS is the Initial
Joint Polar system agreement (IJPS). This agreement, between the United
States and EUMETSAT (a conglomerate of European nations fielding a polar
satellite) is part of an extremely complex relationship.
NPOESS is unique because the requirements define the mission. This is not
a program designed to fly specific instruments; rather, this is a program
designed to carry out a defined set of operational tasks, using the best
instruments possible. The first meteorological satellites, flown
approximately 40 years ago, gathered black and white imagery with
extremely poor resolution. Today's most advanced weather satellites have
800 meter resolution. This is key because better resolution allows for
more accurate weather predictions. A variety of advanced sensors will be
flown on NPOESS. The Visible/Infrared Radiometer Suite (VIRS) can provide
infrared, low light imagery, and is useful for fire detection (civilian
and military), sea surface temperature, and ocean color (useful for
chlorophyll monitoring and detecting red tides). In order to meet DOD
requirements, this system will provide nighttime visible imagery. The
Conical Microwave Imager Sounder (CMIS) has 15 km resolution, and is
useful because it can see below clouds, and is useful for sea surface
winds, and analysis of storms. The Cross-Track Infrared Sounder will
measure temperature and pressure throughout the atmosphere. A variety of
ozone sensors will also be flown (which will help fulfil US obligations
under various ozone treaties). The Space Environmental Sensor Suite will
measure the near-Earth space environment, including solar flares, and help
predict the impact on satellites in orbit.
Encouraging international cooperation has been challenging, but it is an
important part of NPOESS. Cooperation with Europe will help ensure
pre-convergence coverage, and will, eventually, result in cost savings.
Another important part of NPOESS has been a focus on risk reduction, to
minimize instrument failure. Operational convergence of the military and
civilian systems is being accomplished, in part, through the joint Command
and Control center in Suitland, MD. As a result of the converged system,
$1.8 billion has already been saved, cooperation between agencies and with
Europe has been improved, and risk and cost reduction have become high
priorities. The requirements of a successful converged, dual-purpose
system appear to include: establishing clear requirements and
accountability in writing; constantly analyzing and re-evaluating
spending; ensuring a clear and realistic policy; and maintaining
flexibility at all points.
Mr. Schneider focused on the specifics of the convergence of the
civil and military systems under the auspices of NPOESS. Between the two
systems, there were 61 types of measurements that needed to be obtained.
All of these types of data, therefore, need to be collected through the
converged system. It was essential to know what instruments to fly, how
often various instruments had to be flown (and at what time of day) and
other specifics. Then, this information was used to decide which
satellites would carry what instrumentation.
Creating a dual purpose system should not mean duplicating or ignoring
current, good aspects of either the civil or the military systems. If
there are already agreements in place with other government agencies that
meet NPOESS requirements, there is no need to break these agreements and
make new ones. Similarly, if sensors and instruments exist that will
fulfill the needed purposes, there is no need to pay for others to be
developed specifically for this project. If the necessary sensors have not
yet been developed, NPOESS works to support the development of such
sensors. NPOESS has reserved 25% of the payload on each satellite for new
technologies that become available by launch dates.
NASA's role in NPOESS is primarily to support the scientific side of the
mission. NASA has brought technologies and sensors to the program, and has
generally acted as a scientific reviewer. NASA programs have also served
as test beds for NPOESS technologies. Some instruments and sensors that
are the same or similar to those NPOESS is likely to use have been flown
on the NASA aircraft, NASA satellites, and the shuttle. By preflying
instruments, NPOESS can increase its likelihood of success. NASA and
NPOESS are also working to align NASA's Earth Science enterprise with
NPOESS to further reduce duplication of efforts.
NPOESS is projected to be operational in 2008. The NPOESS preparatory
project is scheduled for 2005. NPOESS will continue to prefly instruments
and to sponsor scientific missions until it is fully operational. The key
to NPOESS, and to any dual-use, converged system, is that all participants
must have their needs met. The cooperation needs to be win-win. There is
simply not enough money for separate programs, and it is possible- though
not easy- to meet everyone's needs through a converged program. Working
with the European partner, EUMETSAT has proved challenging, in part
because EUMETSAT is a 17-nation consortium. Nevertheless, the outcome of
US-EUMETSAT cooperation will be highly beneficial to the United States and
Questions and Answers
question- How does NPOESS's interagency nature impact the way it
interacts with Congress? NPOESS has to deal with numerous committees.
What does this mean for funding?
Panel Responses- It has generally been fairly easy for DOD to find
funding for NPOESS, because the $76 million a year is a comparatively
small part of the defense budget. It can be more challenging to obtain
funding on the civil side, because NOAA's overall budget is much smaller.
One of the other issues we've had to grapple with is our interaction with
the Europeans. The European view of dealing with satellites has generally
been quite different from the American view. In Europe, data is denied for
the inability to pay for it. In the United States, data is denied mainly
for political and security reasons. NPOESS and EUMETSAT have had to find a
data policy that Europe and the United States can agree on. This is
extremely challenging, but progress is being made.
question- Is there any one key issue you would highlight in this
Response- NPOESS is set up fairly well. One challenge has been that
reorganizations within the Defense Department have changed who DOD's
NPOESS officials report to and who is in charge of NPOESS. Again, NPOESS
seems to be working fairly well but it has not been easy.
Response- One of NPOESS's funding quirks is that NOAA and DOD split
the costs 50-50, by year. This yearly equality doesn't necessarily reflect
the program, but rather the requirements of the budgetary process.
question- Is there any thought of privatizing NPOESS in the future?
Response- Congress has specifically precluded that option. However,
the raw data and products from NPOESS may well lend themselves to future
value-added services that have considerable commercial value, much as do
the current products from today's DOD and NOAA environmental satellite
EELV- SERVING COMMERCIAL AND NATIONAL SECURITY NEEDS
PANEL DISCUSSION- CHAIRED BYLT. COL. VICTOR VILLHARD, WHITE
HOUSE OFFICE OF SCIENCE AND TEHCNOLOGY POLICY; COL. RICHARD
MCKINNEY, SAF/AQS, DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE; MR. MICHAEL GAUGHAN,
LOCKHEED MARTIN; MR. THOMAS W. PARKINSON, DELTA LAUNCH SERVICES,
BOEING; DR. ROBERT BUTTERWORTH, AIRES ANALYTICS, INC.
LT COL VILLHARD - The EELV program is an integral part of the
Clinton Administration's strategy for sustaining and modernizing the
nation's launch capabilities. The President's 1994 National
Space Transportation Policy established a clear division of
responsibilities: DoD is operating, improving and evolving the current
fleet of ELVs, while NASA is improving the Shuttle and developing and
demonstrating RLV technologies. Last spring, the President asked the
Secretary of Defense to report on the DoD and commercial launch failures
in 1998 and 1999. DoD undertook a review focused on flying the remaining
current ELVs and assuring mission success during the transition to EELV.
Ten of the 19 recommendations address the current fleet, with emphasis on
clear lines of responsibility, value-added government oversight,
independent reviews, balancing risk mitigation with cost, and workforce
issues. The other nine address the same issues in the transition plan for
the EELV. The Air Force is building this EELV transition plan to
reevaluate mission assurance approaches, whether to buy insurance, and to
update the business case for company investments.
NASA's Integrated Space Transportation Plan, with continuing Shuttle
upgrades and the three-part Space Launch Initiative, is another part of
the Clinton Administration's strategy. Operating the Shuttle safely is
NASA's number one objective. Since 1992, NASA has improved Shuttle safety
by more than 80%, increased performance by a third, cut processing time in
half, and reduced operating costs by a third. President Clinton's FY 2001
Budget for NASA quadrupled Shuttle safety investments to $400 million per
year. The President's Policy called for decisions by the end of the decade
on the development of an operational, next-generation RLV. NASA is
applying the lessons learned from the X-vehicles to its plans for the
Space Launch Initiative-a $4.5 billion project over the next five
years-that fulfills the "end of the decade" decision. The goal of the
Space Launch Initiative is for NASA to meet its future space flight needs
using commercial launches. The initiative is based on (1) Commercial
Convergence, (2) Competition, (3) Assured Access, and (4) The Ability to
Evolve. The initiative includes investments to (1) enable full-scale
development of competing, privately owned RLVs by 2005 so they will be
operational by 2010, (2) develop hardware to fly on commercial launches to
meet NASA's unique needs; and (3) buy commercial launch services for
near-term assured access to the International Space Station. In parallel,
NASA plans a decision in 2003 whether to continue with the X-38 CRV design
or to develop a Crew and Cargo Transfer Vehicle instead.
Since the early 1990s, commercial launch rates more than tripled and now
make up about 40 percent of the manifest. To address the implications of
this change, the National Security Council and OSTP co-chaired an
interagency review on the Future Management and Use of the U.S. Space
Launch Bases and Ranges between March 1999 and January 2000. The
Secretaries of Defense, Commerce, and Transportation, the National
Reconnaissance Office, the NASA Administrator, and the President approved
the resultant recommendations and national strategy. The recommendations
focus on expanding the federal-state-industry partnership to enable civil
and commercial space sector users (including spaceports) to have a greater
voice in improving operational flexibility and efficiency of the ranges,
use nonfederal funding as appropriate to maintain and modernize launch
ranges, modify current law to allow a more complete federal-state-industry
partnership to develop, develop common range safety requirements for
government and commercial launches at federal and nonfederal launch sites,
and invest in next-generation range technology development and
demonstration. The national strategy is to allow market forces and the
pace of new commercial developments to help determine the future role of
commercial industry at the ranges.
The Clinton Administration's overarching policy on space is to take
advantage of the synergies among the U.S. civil, commercial, and national
security space sectors.
The United States has pursued decade-long effort to modernize US
launch capabilities. All communities involved in space - intelligence,
DOD, civil space, and so on- have been involved and interested in this
effort. In 1994, the Space Launch Modernization Plan was adopted. In all
dual-use/converged systems, particularly launch systems, it has become
obvious that deciding on the requirements of the converged system is
absolutely essential. It is also important to develop and utilize
partnerships with industry. Partnerships with industry can allow for
simultaneous development of new technologies and cost saving.
Co-development with industry has allowed the United States to save six
billion dollars on the EELV's so far. The United States invests 500
million dollars per concept, and industry pays for the rest. The current
main launch systems-the Delta 2 and 3, the Titan, and the Atlas II and
III-are capable, but not very cost effective, nor operationally effective.
They are basically niche systems. These rockets are generally on the pad
integrating all systems and preparing for launch for as much as three to
The EELV project represents an effort to make launch services competitive,
commercial, cheaper, and better. Lockheed and Boeing are both working to
develop next generation expendable launch vehicles. Both companies are
developing ELVs that are tailored for a variety of payloads. As well,
these new rockets will spend a much shorter time on the launch pad,
removing what is now a significant bottleneck. These are true dual-purpose
systems, where there is no difference between the rockets used for
civilian and military launches. The use of commercial contracts, and
business practices, as well as the continuing emphasis on competition and
flexibility, are resulting in overall lower costs and higher efficiency.
There are incentives for the government, the military, and private
companies to stay committed to this program. One of the challenges for the
Defense Department has been the necessity of protecting commercial data,
and information related to commercial contracts. This is not a challenge
that arises in typical government procurement. Basically, creating a
dual-purpose, converged system is difficult. The system must be
competitive, for both government/military and commercial partners. The
system must be useful to all participants. It is essential to set and
maintain clear and stable requirements. Dual-purpose systems will not be
feasible for most military needs; however, when such systems are feasible,
they can have significant pay-offs and should be pursued.
MICHAEL GAUGHAN, LOCKHEED MARTIN
Lockheed Martin is currently at work on the Atlas V, under the Air Force's
EELV program. The Atlas V was developed from the Atlas IIA and IIAS. The
evolved approach used has resulted in a new engine, with fewer parts to
break. The RD-180 engine used is a result of increased post-Cold War
Russian-American cooperation, and is adapted from the existing RD 170.
Eighty percent of the systems in the Atlas V were tested in use in the
Atlas III. The success of the Atlas V in early tests has led to a great
deal of excitement about this rocket's potential as a launch vehicle. (link)
THOMAS PARKINSON, BOEING
It is important to consider the requirement, challenges, and rewards of
successful dual-use systems. Commercial firms are developing new sources
of investment, and new partnerships. Partnering with the government means
working with many agencies and people, dealing with cost and
infrastructure, considering Congressional and Administrative support, and
working on a different timetable. Of course, even when companies do not
partner with the government, government regulations are always a
consideration - for example, export control requirements and FAA safety
regulations must be considered. Under the EELV program, Boeing is
developing the Delta IV launch vehicle, which will be capable of launching
payloads ranging from 4,200 kg to 13,000 kg to geostationary transfer obit
(8,100 kg - 23,000 kg to LEO). The wide range of payload capability will
allow the Delta IV to serve a range of civil, military, and commercial
DR. BUTTERWORTH, AIRES
In examining current government partnerships, the general
consideration must be, are dual-use systems a good investment for the
taxpayer? Do they represent a good strategy in the development of the US
space programs? In recent years, government investment in launch system
development and operation has decreased and private funds have increased.
Taking these trends into account, it is probably more beneficial to allow
the government to act as a purchaser and investor, and allow the
commercial sector to play the primary role in development.
Government-industry interactions in pursuit of dual-use systems, have, to
this point, ranged between being beneficial to both and being a
significant loss to both. It is possible for the government and industry
to partner in manners that help both parties, but achieving this condition
is not easy.
The EELV program shows evidence that government-industry partnerships can
be mutually beneficial. The dual-purpose nature of the EELV program seems
to be resulting in significant cost savings. Yet it is too early to tell
how much money will be saved, in part because launch costs change with
shifts in the market, and because the Air Force, the General Accounting
Office, and the commercial partners all calculate costs differently. The
different operational styles of the various participants lead to different
priorities in risks, returns, profits and goals. The success of some
cooperative space projects, such as EELV, and the failures of others, such
as Iridium, show that meshing government and industry is still far from
easy. Developing more dual-purpose systems may require more research into
the peculiarities of government-industry relationships.
THE FUTURE OF SATELLITE EXPORT CONTROLS
DR. GORDON ADAMS, DIRECTOR, SECURITY POLICY STUDIES, EILLIOT SCHOOL
OF INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS; MR. JOEL JOHNSON, AEROSPACE INDUSTRIES
The post-Cold War era has brought significant economic and
military changes. The American economy is no longer isolated or
self-sufficient. The essential technologies for military performance are,
very often, technologies developed in or for the commercial sectors.
Applying technology to military needs depends upon having the technology,
and having enough money to properly integrate the technology into military
systems. In both the United States and Europe, it is becoming more and
more difficult to label any technology as wholly military or wholly
civilian, as totally safe or totally unsafe to export. The DOD has found
it extremely challenging to deal with the new ambiguity of high technology
systems, and some of its practices have made private companies reluctant
to deal with DOD. Governments worldwide are slowly realizing that new
export control regimes, and new ways of dealing with the spread of
advanced technologies, are necessary.
The politics of national security means that the issue of export control
regulations is about far more than the technology. Xenophobia, electoral
politics, funding, and multiple other issues all impact this policy. The
transfer of export control responsibility for satellites and satellite
components to the Department of State in early 1999 was initiated on a
political level. For some it was a way to make Clinton look bad. For
others, it was centered in a genuine concern for the outflow of militarily
useful US technology abroad, especially to China. They noted that when the
Bush Administration shifted responsibility for these controls to the
Department of Commerce from State in 1992, only about 200 licenses per
year were granted to China, mainly to allow the launch of US satellites on
Chinese launch vehicles. When Commerce was in charge, 1000-plus licenses
were granted, to China and other nations, for numerous purposes and
technologies. Hence, some policymakers felt that the diffusion of
technologies capable of being employed by military forces as well as
civilian users might have gone too far.
However, the shift of license responsibility to the Department of State
caused a marked shift in the rules regarding transfer and a sharp slowdown
in the processing of applications, in part because of bureaucratic
nervousness and in part because State did not have personnel in place to
handle the volume of requests. The resultant slowdown, along with the
imposition of tougher rules for contacts between US companies and their
foreign partners has hurt US companies by reducing the share of new
satellite technology sales for U.S. companies. Foreign companies have
become much more cautious in their willingness to entertain proposals for
subcontracts and joint ventures.
As a short-term solution, the administration announced new reform
initiatives in export controls which would rework the approach to controls
for allied nations. Nevertheless, the sheer volume and diversity of
technologies involved poses problems for an overworked and overcautious
State Department staff. Further, The State Department, the DOD, Congress,
and Department of Commerce all have different ideas about the appropriate
location and management of export controls. Additional issues are raised
by the fact that other governments have their own policies and priorities
for export controls. Globalization and the resultant increasingly
international nature of firms has added further complexities. It is
evident that the issue of export controls on satellite and space-related
technologies is far from resolved at this time. In the long run, continued
loss of US business will harm US national security by causing US companies
to be less nimble and innovative in the international marketplace,
reducing their ability to compete in delivering cutting-edge technologies
to the military at home and abroad.