We use necessary cookies to make our website work. We'd also like to use optional analytics cookies to help us improve it.
For more information, please read our cookie policy.

UK – EU Transition, and UK Civil Aviation Regulations

To access current UK civil aviation regulations, including AMC and GM, CAA regulatory documents, please use this link to UK Regulation. Please note, if you use information and guidance under the Headings below, the references to EU regulations or EU websites in our guidance will not be an accurate information or description of your obligations under UK law. These pages are undergoing reviews and updates.

The Space Launch and Orbit Group (SPLOG) has been established to make the regulatory process for protecting the public as efficient and effective as possible for the sector and the regulator. 

The group offers the opportunity for the CAA and industry to:

  • discuss space launch and orbital regulatory activities from the perspective of both the regulator and regulated
  • identify and share opportunities, threats and best practice across the sector.

Membership is extended to all spaceports, range operators, academics, launch vehicle operators, orbital operators and their trade associations as well as academic institutions affected by the Space Industry Act 2018 and new commercial spaceflight regulations. 

The steering group, which comprises of the CAA, industry and academia, determines the meeting structure and sets agendas.

Observer status is offered to other government departments who are not supporting in a technical capacity and the devolved administrations.  

Questions about the SPLOG can be sent to commercialspaceflight@caa.co.uk.

Meeting information

Terms of reference

The SPLOG is chaired by the CAA as the safety regulator. 

Where possible the meetings will align with the Department for Transport’s (DfT) Spaceflight Safety and Regulatory Council (SSRC).

The SSRC is a separate meeting with its own remit but scheduled on the same dates as the SPLOG to support effective and efficient participation for all attendees. 

Function

The SPLOG brings together a wide range of interested stakeholders to discuss space launch and orbital regulatory activities.  

It supports the Governments ambition for launch in the UK by offering a transparent engagement mechanism for the regulator and sector to discuss the implementation of the new Space Industry Regulations (2021) from the perspective of both the regulator and regulated.   

It provides a forum for industry, academia and the regulator to both identify and share risks and opportunities. Starting this engagement in November 2021 offers the chance for companies seeking to meet UK Government launch ambitions in 2022 the early opportunity to identify any legal, regulatory or policy issues which could impact on the ability of the sector to meet that ambition.

It also supports the SSRC, which is tasked with providing advice and recommending changes in relation to UK commercial spaceflight legislation and regulations, providing information and advice.

As a new function the first six to 18 months of the SPLOG will focus on testing the new regulations and supporting the SSRC in its first review of the regulations and any potential changes to the overarching policy, regulatory, legal and funding framework if these are required to address delivery issues in the UK space sector.

The SPLOG does not have policy responsibilities and does not have the remit to make decisions directly affecting the commercial spaceflight regulations.  
The SPLOG does not have the remit to discuss individual active or planned licence applications for spaceflight activities. 

Industry members will steer the direction for content and topics for discussion and share insights. 

Close Function

Governance

The SPLOG is chaired by the CAA. 

The SPLOG steering group comprised of the CAA, industry and academia will decides on the meeting structure. 

The steering group will also bring into the meeting experts and evidence-based reports or issues as appropriate, as well as meet briefly before and between meetings to discuss and agree agendas and any proposals on working groups and their management.

Every attempt is made to have representation from across the commercial space transportation industry. 

Formal meeting minutes are not be taken but notes of agreed actions and key points on discussion are recorded. 

The CAA fulfills a limited secretariat function and is responsible for: 

  • Scheduling meetings;
  • Preparing the agenda based on input from the steering group;
  • Circulating papers by email in advance of the meeting;
    and
  • Drafting and circulating actions and key points

The meeting notes will be made publicly available following each meeting.

Close Governance

Group membership

The invitation to join SPLOG meetings is extended to all spaceports, range operators, academics, launch vehicle operators, orbital operators and their trade associations as well as academic institutions.

Close Group membership

Working groups

The SPLOG may establish working groups to address key industry topics as needed. 

The SPLOG steering group will designate the remit of any Working Groups, determine the issues they are to address, and the length of their existence. 

Close Working groups

Meeting structure

For the first year (2021/22) meetings shall be held every four months. 

The first meeting was held in November 2021 and meetings will be held every four months, subject to diary constraints or other reasons necessitating scheduling at a different time. 

Separate sessions will be held for launch and orbit, but where possible all sessions including the SSRC will be held on the same date. Members may join as many sessions as they would like.

Meetings are held in a hybrid format facilitating in person attendance where possible or remote access via a virtual video link.  In-person meetings will take place primarily in central London but will be held in other parts of the UK on occasion.  

UKSA/BEIS/DfT/MOD and Devolved Administrations may attend as observers (if they wish), Ofcom are also key members of the Steering Group.

The SPLOG steering group will set the agenda but welcomes suggestions from members on topics or issues together with the following standing agenda items:

Launch session (to cover Launch, Range and Spaceports)

  • General update
  • Delivery progress
  • (agenda items to be confirmed by Steering Group)
  • AOB

Orbital session

  • General update
  • Delivery progress
  • (agenda items to be confirmed by Steering Group)
  • AOB

After the first 12 months the agenda will be reviewed and meetings will focus on improvement and prioritising issues. 

Where possible meetings of the SPLOG will be scheduled to take place on the same date as the Spaceflight Regulations Review Committee to support effective and efficient participation for all attendees. The Department for Transport will run the SSRC session.

Close Meeting structure

The Spaceflight Safety and Regulatory Council (SSRC)

The SSRC is tasked with providing advice and recommending changes in relation to UK commercial spaceflight legislation and regulations to ensure UK has the right regulatory environment to support the growing UK spaceflight market, and contribute to the ambition for UK to become a global leader in space.  

The Council is a partnership between industry and government, bringing together government ministers, officials and senior-level stakeholders, to implement regulatory change through an open and transparent process.

It is run by the Department for Transport and keeps review of:

  • the Space Industry Act 2018;
  • the Space Industry Regulations 2021;
  • the Spaceflight Activities (Investigations of Spaceflight Accidents) Regulations 2021;
    and
  • the Space Industry (Appeals) Regulations 2021.

The Council membership, terms of reference, and meeting minutes are available at GOV.UK

Questions about the SSRC can be sent to SpaceTeam@dft.gov.uk.

Provide page feedback

Please enter your comments below, or use our usual service contacts if a specific matter requires an answer.

Fields marked with an asterisk (*) are required.

Latest from UK Civil Aviation Authority

  1. Continued focus on change for GA Team
  2. Virtual aviation work experience partnership with Springpod
  3. Helicopter pilot sentenced for forging licence

View all latest news