Viasat Joins the Paris Peace Forum’s ‘Net Zero Space’ Initiative

Viasat Inc., a global communications company, today announced it is joining the Paris Peace Forum’s ‘Net Zero Space’ Initiative in tackling the growing space debris crisis in the shared orbits closest to Earth.

Viasat is the first U.S.-headquartered communications satellite operator to join the initiative, which recommends urgent action to contain and reduce the dangerous and increasing amount of debris in Low Earth Orbit (LEO) that increases the chance of collisions, threatens the safety of space operations, increases the cost of access to space by everyone and also threatens humanity’s ability to benefit from outer space.

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Signatories are asked to contribute tangible actions to contribute to the ‘net zero’ goal. As part of its contribution, Viasat published a White Paper titled, “Managing Mega-Constellation Risks in LEO,” setting out the main considerations for calculating the aggregate risks associated with large LEO constellations, and developing methods to mitigate them. In the paper, Viasat is committed to developing comprehensive models that:

  • Employ quantitative metrics and measurement tools that enable a full evaluation of the current environment in LEO, the expected evolution of that environment, and the expected consequences of more intensive uses planned for those orbits, and
  • Assist in the design and operation of sustainable spacecraft and constellations.

“The Earth’s shared orbital resources are finite, fragile and at risk of over-exploitation. Viasat has long advocated for safe use of these resources, and we are pleased to join the ‘Net Zero Space’ initiative,” said Mark Dankberg, co-founder and executive chairman, Viasat. “Our modelling aims to forecast the evolution of debris in LEO so that regulators can set prudent limits on collision risk, and require responsible spacecraft and constellation design and operations. Comprehensive models are the only way to understand and forecast the impact on the orbital environment of the growing use of LEO, and ensure equitable and safe access to those shared orbital resources. We urge satellite operators and national space agencies to join the initiative and work together to protect the use of space by all nations.”

In October 2021, Viasat launched its inaugural Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) report, where the Company committed to being a leader in bringing the benefits of space technology to the world in a sustainable, responsible and inclusive way. Viasat is focused on cooperating with a broad range of responsible nations and global partners; joining the Paris Peace Forum’s ‘Net Zero Space’ Initiative is a testament to Viasat’s commitment.

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