Brian Weeden Testifies Before U.S. Congress on Space Situational Awareness

Tuesday, February 11, 2020


On February 11, 2020, SWF Director of Program Planning Dr. Brian Weeden testified before the U.S. Congress as part of a hearing on space situational awareness (SSA). The hearing was called by the House Subcommittee on Space and Aeronautics to discuss key issues on SSA and the links between SSA and space sustainability. Dr. Weeden was joined by Mr. Dan Oltrogge from Analytical Graphics, Inc; Professor Joanne Gabrynowicz from the University of Mississippi Space Law Center; Professor Danielle Wood from MIT Media Lab, and Dr. Ruth Stillwell from Norwich University. 

Dr. Weeden's oral testimony highlighted the recent near miss between two dead U.S. satellites as an example of why Congress needed to take action on improving civil SSA capabilities. The most immediate action would be to give a federal agency the necessary authorities and budget to provide civil SSA data and services to support space safety. Furthermore, Dr. Weeden urged Congress to reinforce America's commitment to enforcing orbital debris mitigation standards, establishing a space traffic management regime, and developing the capability to remove orbital debris. Dr. Weeden's written testimony expanded on these issues and their links to SSA and a holistic approach to space sustainability.

A full recording of the hearing can be found below. More details about the hearing, including written statements from other witnesses, can be found on the House hearing webpage


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Last updated on February 12, 2020