-It’s interesting what kind of project you can develop when you mix Norse mythology with space technology. Asgardia is the name of what in the future could become the world’ first space nation.
Named after Asgard, the ancient kingdom of the powerful Norse gods, the project’s members envision a peaceful future in space, but will current space laws permit a new country to declare itself in space? Asgardia’s founders hope the first nation in space can go on a mission to mine asteroids and defend Earth from dangerous meteorites, space debris, and other threats.
The group behind the Asgardia project includes space experts based out of Canada, Romania, Russia, and the United States, and they announced their intention to launch the first space nation from a press conference in Paris on October 12, 2016.According to Nordic Business Insider, “ the core concept is to launch a robotic satellite within the next 18 months (60 years after Russia launched Sputnik, the first artificial satellite), then eventually follow up with a permanent space station “where people can live, work, and have their own rules and regulations.” “We must leave [Earth] because it’s very much in the nature of humanity,” Ram Jakhu, the director of McGill University’s Institute of Air and Space Law and an Asgardia founding project member, told Business Insider in a phone intevierview before Wednesday’s press conference.
“Humanity left Africa and covered the whole globe. The resources of Earth will be depleted,” he said. “Third, I would say, we have a wish to go where nobody has gone before.”The project is still in its early stages and the goal is to involve more skilled engineers and scientists in a successful development of Asgardia. In addition to experts, Asgardia is calling in you to join its ranks.
Asgardia has announced the site will allow the first 100,000 people to register to become citizens of Asgardia alongside their nationality on Earth.In a press release, the founders stated “Asgardia is a fully-fledged and independent nation, and a future member of the United Nations – with all the attributes this status entails.”
However, according to current international space law, the country that launches an object into space is responsible for it, including any damage it causes to denizens of Earth.
“The project is creating a new framework for ownership and nationhood in space, which will adapt current outer space laws governing responsibility, private ownership and enterprise so they are fit for purpose in the new era of space exploration,” the organization said in its emailed release. “By creating a new Space Nation, private enterprise, innovation and the further development of space technology to support humanity will flourish free from the tight restrictions of state control that currently exist.”
How would that be different from the ISS?
“The ISS is joint venture. There’s no entity called ‘ISS,’” a representative of Arkadia said. “It’s just one facility, parts of which are controlled by different nations. It’s more or less a condo.”
United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) has note yet responded whether or not current space laws would permit a new country to declare itself in space – from the ground, with an uncrewed satellite, or even with people aboard a space station.
How Arkadia will be built has also not yet been outlined in detail. The project’s members are aware of that this idea sounds like science fiction, but new remarkable inventions have often showed us the line between science fiction and science is thin.