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  • Ahmed Saleh

Inaugural Space Debris Conference unites 260 leaders from 50 nations

Riyadh, February 12, 2024, The inaugural Space Debris Conference, launched yesterday, convenes 260 industry leaders, experts, and specialists from over 50 nations to address the pressing issue of space debris and foster global dialogue on mitigating this significant challenge.

Organized by the Saudi Space Agency in collaboration with the Communications, Space, and Technology Commission, and in partnership with the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA), the conference aims to raise awareness of the escalating threat posed by space debris and advocate for international action to address it.

Luc Piguet, CEO of Clear Space, delivered the keynote speech titled "A Mission to Remove Space Debris from Earth's Orbit" on the conference's second day. He emphasized the urgent need for global cooperation to tackle space debris, citing the high costs associated with debris removal and the increasing risks to Earth's orbit and space systems.

During the panel discussion on "Mitigating and Removing Space Debris," participants explored efforts to develop satellite technologies and remote sensing capabilities for debris removal. They underscored the critical link between space debris and essential Earth services, such as internet connectivity and scientific research, and stressed the need for binding laws to hold operators accountable and spur solutions.

Dr. Marshall Kaplan, principal of LaunchSpace Services, proposed hosting international workshops with the Saudi Space Agency to foster collaboration on innovative technologies for orbit cleanliness and debris mitigation. He emphasized the importance of international cooperation among governmental and commercial space organizations to ensure space sustainability.

The Space Debris Conference serves as a platform to address key challenges facing the global space sector, reaffirming the Kingdom's commitment to sustainable space exploration and use.

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