Conception of repurposed orbital debris under DARPA’s Phoenix program (Credits: DARPA).

Secure World Foundation released the following announcement on July 23, 2012.

On-orbit servicing (OOS) and active debris removal (ADR) are part of an emerging category of future on-orbit activities that are critical for taking the next leap in our use of Earth orbit. The ability to repair or refuel satellites, construct new satellites in orbit, and even remove orbital debris can help drive innovative uses of space and create new possibilities. These activities also raises a host of diplomatic, legal, safety, operational, and policy challenges that need to be tackled for this future to be possible.

On June 26, 2012, the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) held a conference on “Fostering Sustainable Satellite Servicing” in Washington, D.C. that served as an excellent beginning for this conversation.

To continue the discussion, Secure World Foundation (SWF) will be holding two follow-on international conferences to bring in the perspectives and viewpoints from all stakeholders on issues of on-orbit servicing and active debris removal, extending the conversation to an international audience.

In partnership with the Institut francais des relations internationales (Ifri), SWF will hold a conference in Brussels, Belgium on October 30, 2012 to bring these discussions to the European community.

SWF is also partnering with the Singapore Space and Technology Association (SSTA) to hold another conference in Singapore on February 20, 2013 to extend the dialog to the Asia-Pacific region.

According to Dr. Michael Simpson, Executive Director of SWF: “In order to continue to enjoy the benefits from our use of space, we need to be able to have an open and honest discussion of the challenges facing issues like OOS and ADR. An international dialog allows for cooperative effort and permits transparent conversation on these important topics.”

Details on the events, including venues and registration, will be posted to the events section of the SWF website ( in the coming weeks. If you would like to be notified when these details are available, please subscribe to the SWF RSS news feed (


For more information on the seminar series or the topics of on-orbit servicing and active debris removal, please contact:

Victoria Samson
Washington Office Director
Secure World Foundation
Phone:  +1 202 568 6213

Brian Weeden
Technical Advisor
Secure World Foundation
Phone:  +1 202 683 8534

Agnieszka Lukaszczyk
Brussels Office Director
Secure World Foundation
Phone:  +32 2 545 11 50

About Secure World Foundation

Secure World Foundation (SWF) is a private operating foundation dedicated to the secure and sustainable use of space for the benefit of Earth and all its peoples.

SWF engages with academics, policy makers, scientists and advocates in the space and international affairs communities to support steps that strengthen global space sustainability. It promotes the development of cooperative and effective use of space for the protection of Earth’s environment and human security.

The Foundation acts as a research body, convener and facilitator to advocate for promoting key space security and other space related topics and to examine their influence on governance and international development.

Secure World Foundation is headquartered in Broomfield, Colorado, with offices in Washington, D.C. and Brussels, Belgium.

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