The Space Industry Act 2018 (SIA) and Space Industry Regulations 2021 allow for the licensing and regulation of a wide range of commercial spaceflight activities, including the provision of range control services. The Act and the Regulations set out general requirements for all licence holders and contain specific requirements for the provision of range control services.
To operate a carry out range control services, you must apply to the CAA for a range control operator licence.
The information you must provide when applying for a range control licence is set out in Table A and Table F of the Regulator's Licensing Rules.
The basic prerequisites for obtaining a range control licence include the CAA being satisfied that:
- the applicant meets criteria regarding eligibility, financial and technical resources and is otherwise a fit and proper person
- the licensed activity will not impair the national security of the UK, is consistent with the UK’s international obligations and is not contrary to the national interest
- the applicant has assigned persons to certain prescribed roles and if required by regulation, has trained and qualified certain persons in their roles or capacities
- the applicant has evidenced the capability of the applicant to provide the proposed range control services
- the applicant has provided a draft of the management systems, including a safety management system, and quality management system
- the applicant has documented the proposed or intended relevant agreements
- the applicant has provided a draft space site security programme
Any applicant for a range control licence must also provide details of:
- the range services they intend to provide
- the equipment that they will use in providing the services (such as tracking and surveillance equipment, communication equipment, etc)
- how any boundaries will be managed, and warning notices issued to keep people out of hazard areas
- their facilities and infrastructure, including electrical power and other utilities
- the personnel who will provide their services, with evidence of their skills and qualifications
- the procedures they will use, including for interaction with other relevant organisations and for flight termination if necessary
You may be asked to provide details of the extent of your range services including the justification and/or calculation of those limits.
Once you have submitted your application to us, we will meet and liaise with you as necessary. We may also request additional information and inspect sites, facilities, equipment, spacecraft, carrier aircraft and other vehicles to be used by you, as required to determine whether a licence can be granted. If it is determined that a licence can be granted, and the Secretary of State has given his consent, we will inform you and send a copy of your licence with any applicable conditions. While your range control licence remains valid, you must cooperate with our ongoing monitoring and oversight activity, including site visits and attendance at various pre-and-post launch reviews.
keep your safety case up to date, submit mandatory occurrence reports when needed and cooperate with our ongoing monitoring and oversight activity, including site visits and attendance at various pre-and-post launch reviews
Further guidance can be found in the guidance & resources section
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