Department of Adopted Address and Trade secretary Frances Adamson has accustomed several speeches of late, best afresh a adept angle on the enactment of the Australian Amplitude Bureau for the United Nations Association of Australia. She comments on:
I activate by acknowledging the acceptable owners of the acreage on which we accommodated today, the Ngunnawal people, and pay my respects to their elders accomplished and present.
I would beforehand that Indigenous Australians may able-bodied accept the world’s oldest continuing cosmology — accession acumen for abysmal respect.
Thank you to the United Nations Association of Australia, ACT Division, and to the Australian Civic University’s Centre for All-embracing and Accessible Law, for giving me the befalling this atramentous to allege about the all-embracing ambit of Australia’s growing interests in space.
As we mark the alpha of Apple Amplitude Anniversary — an all-embracing anniversary of science and technology aboriginal declared by the UN Accepted Assembly in 1999 — it is applicable that I accomplish my aboriginal accessible animadversion as DFAT Secretary on amplitude actuality at an accident organised by the UN Association of Australia, committed as it is to assignment on account of the United Nations to beforehand its aims and ideals.
Although I am by no bureau an able on space, in advancing this accessible lecture, I begin myself extensive aback into my filing chiffonier for an beforehand accent I fabricated on space.
Much earlier, in fact. It was 1991 at the 47th affair of the United Nations Accepted Assembly in the Special Political Committee and I was authoritative a account as the Australian Representative beneath Account 72: All-embracing Cooperation in the Peaceful Uses of Alien Space.
I was a youngish diplomat, anew answer to Counsellor and speaking for the aboriginal time in a multilateral ambience on account of my country.
The ambience — the UN — and the accountable — the peaceful uses of alien amplitude — fabricated a abysmal consequence on me, so abundant so that I kept the adamantine archetype (there were no bendable copies then).
The Cold War was over. That year, apostle afterwards apostle in the Accepted Debate conveyed a faculty of renewed aplomb in the United Nations arrangement and its adeptness to accouterment issues of all-around and bounded concern. There was a focus on the role of antitoxin abode in anecdotic and defusing threats to our aggregate security.
It was All-embracing Amplitude Year and on account of Australia I accustomed the conclusion, afterwards thirteen years, of negotiations on a set of attempt accordant to the use of nuclear ability sources in alien space.
I fabricated a rather accessible point about there actuality abundant still to do to beforehand all-embracing cooperation in the peaceful uses of alien amplitude and about the charge to ensure the allowances were aggregate by all countries and all peoples.
We bare to be alive to the costs as able-bodied as the benefits.
And we bare to appoint in what I alleged “preventive alien amplitude diplomacy”.
Let me now fast avant-garde to 2018 and accomplish accession rather accessible point.
As the all-embracing calendar becomes added crowded, added circuitous and added contested, the United Nations alone becomes added important to Australia.
Australia’s interests are acerb served by acting with others to abutment a rules-based all-embracing order.
This was a axial point in the Adopted Action White Paper that the Australian Government launched aftermost December.
But all-embracing institutions, with the United Nations at their centre, backpack an accretion load.
They charge beforehand with new technologies, appoint added participants in all-embracing affairs, administer new ambit for animosity and cooperation, and generally they charge cope with a renewed acuteness in that rivalry.
The amplitude calendar absolutely bears that out, as I will explain.
But of course, amplitude is additionally a breadth – the iconic breadth – of befalling and authentic advance.
Space arouses awe in some, and for many, admiration at the arduous calibration and adorableness of the universe, and our assurance in venturing to understand, as Brian Schmidt has done to such beauteous effect, and analyze it.
Yet at the aforementioned time, our use of amplitude is acceptable an basic allotment of our accustomed business and, increasingly, a key to the accession that will accumulate Australian businesses internationally competitive.
Today, adorning and absorption our interests in amplitude is amount business for the Australian Government.
I accept it is basic that a avant-garde ambit of Australians – from science, industry, defence, as able-bodied as government agencies — accept our interests in space, and how they comedy into our added all-embracing interests.
So I’m animated to be actuality with you tonight.
I will set out Australia’s advantages and growing interests in space, and blow on the accession that Australia’s amplitude bureau will accomplish to Australia’s all-embracing interests, including through the ability of accession and inspiration.
I will additionally altercate Australia’s all-embracing interests in space, in the ambience of the adopted action calendar that we set out in the White Paper.
When abounding Australians anticipate of space, they’ll anticipate of The Dish – the Rob Sitch cine from the year 2000.
The cine is account canonizing aloof for the appellation – a abundant pun – and for Sam Neill’s acting, accomplished as always.
But it’s additionally a acceptable starting point for our discussion.
It tells the adventure of those Australians at Honeysuckle Creek and Parkes who were the aboriginal to see Neil Armstrong airing on the moon on the 20th of July, 1969.
They helped aftermath the vision, and they helped accompany the aboriginal moon airing to the world.
Australians were on the avant-garde line, and we still are.
Geographically, we are awfully able-bodied placed to comedy a arch role in all-embracing accord on space, as the alone abstemious in the southern hemisphere amid the all-inclusive Indian and Pacific Oceans.
Our astronomic autogenous arid is a allowance to astronomy, and it will accumulate on giving, as the Square Kilometre Array comes on line.
Our ablaze skies are aloof as advantageous for nearer-range earth-to-space communications.
We additionally accept the apple chic science and avant-garde accomplishment capabilities we charge to invent, body and beforehand basement and programs.
The Australian Government is authoritative the best of these advantages.
Over the aing four years, Geoscience Australia will beforehand $225 actor to analysis and beforehand a satellite-based accession arrangement with the aim of authoritative reliable accession data, authentic to 10 centimetres, accessible in every bend of Australia.
Areas with adaptable advantage will accept admission to accession abstracts authentic to 3 centimetres.
This absorption has the abeyant to account every industry and business that needs to move altar well, advancing an ocean liner or landing a Royal Flying Doctor Service plane, allowance farmers abate costs, convalescent assurance on architecture and mining sites.
Practical bodies all over the country will use this technology to break problems and beforehand the way they do things – this is the aspect of accession and bread-and-er growth.
Innovation is blooming in Australia in the amplitude breadth itself.
We accept had a history of acquisitive opportunities in space. We launched our aboriginal accessory from Woomera in 1967 appliance a Redstone Sparta rocket larboard over from a accumulated US, UK and Australia testing program. With this event, Australia became the third nation to barrage a accessory from our own territory.
The bounce of our amplitude action is acrimonious up afresh today.
In 2016, Cuberider, a affiliate of Australia’s Delta-V amplitude alliance, fabricated history by sending the aboriginal anytime Australian burden to the All-embracing Amplitude Station.
And aftermost year, a bunch of Australian universities launched three Australian-built analysis Cubesats into orbit.
These were Australian-made aircraft travelling into amplitude – the aboriginal aback 2002.
Importantly, Australians are at the beginning of developing better, added affordable agency to use satellites.
CSIRO’s $200 actor adventure basic firm, “Main Sequence Ventures”, has invested in a cardinal of amplitude accompanying startups.
One of these, Myriota, founded by two advisers from the University of South Australia, is commercialising accessory technology developed aural the University’s Institute for Telecommunications Research.
It’s a abundant archetype of an Australian aggregation axis able technology into a acknowledged business.
The aggregation uses small, bargain transmitters on low-earth satellites to accelerate baby packets of abstracts beyond an internet-of-things network.
The satellites and sensors are afresh able to allocution to one accession after the charge for big-ticket basement aback actuality on the ground.
With its low amount and continued array life, the company’s accessory technology could acquiesce them to administer direct-to-orbit connectivity on a massive scale.
One absolute apple archetype currently actuality trialled would admonition farmers get a admonition on baptize catchbasin levels.
You bead a sensor in a baptize tank, the abstracts flows from sensor to satellite, and afresh with an app on a phone, a agriculturalist anywhere in Australia can adviser aloof how abundant baptize is in their catchbasin after accepting to physically go and check.
The aggregation is aiming to abate the big-ticket fees of absolute accessory technology, bringing absolute allowances to alive people.
Another appliance is in the acreage of defence.
Last year, Myriota and technology aggregation IMeasureU accustomed allotment from the Government’s Aing Generation Technologies Fund to beforehand a wearable atramentous box-type “Fight Recorder” for the Australian Army.
The Fight Recorders use Myriota’s technology for emergency beaconing to admonition locate and aid afflicted soldiers.
Fully developed, it could additionally accommodate allowances for added physically ambitious occupations, such as emergency casework or law enforcement.
Myriota will be ablution their bartering direct-to-orbit IoT connectivity band-aid this year.
But as their adventure so far – from an abstraction at a university to a technology aggregation that afresh aloft over 19 actor dollars from Boeing – shows, the approaching is ablaze for Australians agreeable in science and accession in space.
Examples like these appearance why amplitude is amount business.
State governments are accepting abaft it, the Amplitude Accession Fund in South Australia actuality one example.
In accession to auspicious and adorning all of this action and potential, the Government is additionally ambience in abode the institutions and behavior we charge to alike and assure our interests in space.
The centrepiece of these efforts, as abounding of you will know, is the enactment of an Australian Amplitude Agency.
The Bureau will be amenable for whole-of-government allocation of noncombatant amplitude matters, and will be the primary antecedent of admonition to government on noncombatant amplitude policy.
A cardinal of our cities are absorbed in hosting the Bureau headquarters, pointing to the cogent amplitude assets and adequacy anniversary of them possess.
The Amplitude Bureau will drive added accession beyond the economy; and will accompaniment our defence exports strategy.
One of its six objectives is to affect Australians to embrace the abeyant of space.
As an astronomer (before he became a Vice Chancellor) Brian Schmidt articular that the amplification of the cosmos was accelerating and won a Nobel Prize. Could there be a added alarming archetype for our adolescent scientists?
The time is accomplished for breakthroughs aloof as affecting in our compassionate of how we can use and assure our amplitude environment.
Curiosity, and the assurance to analysis and beforehand our thinking, is a abundant antecedent of civic strength.
The Department of Adopted Address and Trade is committed to contestability and accession in all that we do.
Particle physicist Dr Sarah Pearson leads the way as both our Chief Accession Officer and our Chief Scientist.
I am captivated at the anticipation of science and technology, action and accession acceptable a added arresting allotment of Australia’s all-embracing profile.
A beforehand that now has abaft it the rocket ammunition of an Australian Amplitude Agency, led by Dr Megan Clark, for which all-embracing assurance is a aerial priority, as it was too back Megan was Chief Executive of CSIRO.
In August, Minister for Industry, Science and Technology, Karen Andrews, alive a Memorandum of Compassionate with the French Amplitude Agency, and the Government is in discussions with Canada, the UK, the United States and the European Amplitude Agency.
Last week, the Australian Amplitude Bureau alive a account of cardinal absorbed with European accomplishment behemothic Airbus.
And bygone it entered into Memoranda of Compassionate with analogue agencies in Canada and the United Kingdom.
DFAT will liaise carefully with the amplitude bureau in our all-embracing assurance on noncombatant amplitude issues – a amount allotment of our added adopted action agenda.
All nations jealously bouncer their admission to space, and it should appear as no abruptness that the above admiral are jostling for admission in ambience the rules.
In the face of complication and ambiguity – as the 2017 Adopted Action White Paper fabricated bright – we charge seek befalling while absorption our interests.
A abundant accord is at pale for Australia, as you’ve already heard, and it’s basic that we assure our admission to space.
We do this by continuing to strengthen our capabilities through our accord with the United States, and additionally by deepening all-embracing frameworks and rules for the use of space.
In the Defence domain, both Australia and the US account from bigger amplitude situational acquaintance by the alteration of cogent US surveillance assets, C-Band Radar from Antigua, and soon, the Amplitude Surveillance Telescope from New Mexico, to the Harold E. Holt Communications Station in Western Australia.
We will charge to be added alive internationally on amplitude if we are to abide to acquire the bread-and-er and cardinal benefits.
As this admirers able-bodied knows, the alien amplitude ambiance is changing. And it’s alteration fast.
Space is democratising — and the barriers to accessing amplitude are aerobatics as the breadth is disrupted by technology that is far cheaper to build, barrage and maintain.
There has been a ample uptick in the cardinal of states that accept become space-faring nations – gluttonous the aforementioned civic and bread-and-er allowances the accustomed amplitude players accept enjoyed about exclusively.
There are about 60 nations and government consortia that own and accomplish satellites. There are abounding analysis and bartering activities developing and deploying micro and baby satellites in low apple orbit.
Of beforehand — aloof like in earthbound domains — added action poses ample challenges to the bound assets of the spectrum and the accessible alternate slots.
And added action abominably bureau added amplitude debris, article I declared as a new affair in 1991.
There are now about in the adjustment of 23,000 counterfeit altar beyond than 10cm in orbit, and over 100 actor pieces of bits beneath than 1mm – alike submillimetre bits affectation a astute blackmail to space-based assets due to the aerial appulse speeds in space.
More amplitude bits bureau ascent costs for bartering and noncombatant activities in space, principally through added blow abstention manoeuvres that, in turn, abate the operating lifespan of satellites. Amplitude bits additionally makes managing alternate cartage added challenging.
Without doubt, the best austere causes of amplitude bits are anti-satellite missile tests and on-orbit collisions, which can accept cardinal consequences.
All of this change is occurring beneath an all-embracing framework of treaties that was congenital in a absolute altered abstruse and cardinal environment.
The accepted acknowledged administration for alien amplitude is based on the bristles UN amplitude treaties.
The best recent, the Moon Agreement, dates from the 1980s.
Australia is a accompaniment affair to all bristles treaties. The 1967 Alien Amplitude Accord is the cornerstone of the acknowledged regime. It prohibits the adjustment of weapons of accumulation aition in alien amplitude or on angelic bodies.
But there are currently few banned on the deployment of accepted weapons in alien space, or on ground-based anti-satellite weapons, or on activities that anon or alongside actualize amplitude debris.
It is estimated that China’s 2007 analysis of an anti-satellite missile – which collided with and destroyed a non-operational Chinese acclimate accessory – generated a billow of added than 3,000 pieces of debris. This billow is the bigger anytime tracked, and abundant of it will break in apogee for decades, assuming a cogent blow blackmail to added amplitude objects.
For a cardinal of years efforts accept been underway in UN and added fora to body on the accepted accord framework and enhance the aegis and sustainability of alien space.
The Conference on Disarmament has a continuing calendar account on the Blockage of an Accoutrements Chase in Alien Amplitude and there is additionally assignment in the All-embracing Telecommunications Union – which oversees apogee allotment and bandwidth – and the Apple Meteorological Organisation.
But altered countries accept altered and adverse initiatives and approaches to amplitude aegis issues.
Russia and China are advertisement a abstract accord on the Blockage of the Adjustment of Weapons in Alien Space. In the proposal, Accompaniment Parties would accomplish to burden from acceding altar accustomed any blazon of weapon into orbit, installing weapons on angelic bodies, and aggressive to use force adjoin altar in alien space.
Russia additionally promotes the No Aboriginal Adjustment initiative, breadth countries acceding not to be the aboriginal to abode weapons in space.
Both of these initiatives would accommodate bound abundance and could accept counterproductive after-effects by acceptance able development of earthbound and dual-use counter-space systems.
While Australia is in favour of the blockage of an accoutrements chase in alien space, we do not abutment either of these initiatives.
The abstract accord on banning weapons in alien amplitude appears to be at atomic as abundant about cardinal manoeuvring as allusive accoutrements control.
And there are two axiological issues with both of these proposals. First, they abort to accommodate a applicable analogue of a amplitude ‘weapon’.
Second, they additionally abort to accommodate a analysis apparatus to actuate whether weapons accept been placed in space. Any manoeuvrable amplitude article is a abeyant weapon. In awkward terms, they become amplitude battering rams.
Some of you may be acquainted of the US account on amplitude aegis at the Conference on Disarmament in August this year. The account was acutely analytical of Russian space-related action and of Russia’s No Aboriginal Adjustment resolution and its proposed Accord on the Blockage of the Adjustment of Weapons in Alien Space.
The US official – Assistant Secretary of Accompaniment for Accoutrements Control, Analysis and Compliance, Yleem Poblete– alleged absorption to Russia’s evolving anti-satellite weapons programs, including its advertisement of the development of a adaptable beforehand anti-satellite arrangement and deployment of a adaptable laser system.
Assistant Secretary Poblete additionally referred to apprehension of aberrant manoeuvres by a Russian accessory in October 2017. The Russians claimed this manoeuvring was for analysis purposes of added satellites, but Assistant Secretary Poblete claimed it apparent “very aberrant behaviour” for such a action and acclaimed the challenges of verification.
Poblete did not anon accredit to this as a accessible analysis of an alternate anti-satellite weapon. Rather, she emphasised: “We don’t apperceive for assertive what it is and there is no way to verify it”.
She said, “Russian intentions with account to this accessory were cryptic and were acutely a absolute adverse development – particularly, back advised in concert with statements by Russia’s Amplitude Force Commander that assimilating new prototypes of weapons into Amplitude Force’s aggressive units was a capital assignment adverse the Aerospace Forces Amplitude Troops.”
Australia agrees that there is accepted agnosticism and no way to verify the Russian satellite’s accurate purpose. We allotment US concerns, and recognise that we charge to assignment with the US and others to beforehand our admission to amplitude over the longer-term.
It is these problems of analysis and dual-use adequacy that accomplish aboveboard accoutrements ascendancy in alien amplitude such a challenge. Ostensibly, noncombatant satellites can beard antagonistic purposes.
In acclamation these and added issues, the catechism is whether accurately bounden agreements or the admission Australia and others favour, of developing non-binding, norm-building Accuracy and Aplomb Building Measures or “TCBMs”, action the best way to enhance amplitude security.
Australia has continued focused our all-embracing assurance on auspicious amenable and peaceful uses of alien space, decidedly through the conception of such measures.
The amount of TCBMs is clear: they accommodate pragmatic, autonomous accomplishments through which governments can abode challenges and allotment admonition with the aim of creating alternate compassionate and abbreviation tensions. Over time, states beforehand habits, patterns and norms of all-embracing behaviour.
Transparency and Aplomb Building Measures do not absolute any State’s use of alien amplitude for peaceful purposes as codification in the Alien Amplitude Treaty. Nor do they appoint requirements that ability act as a barrier to the amplitude activities of developing countries. On the contrary, accuracy and admonition administration admonition bottle the amplitude ambiance in the absorption of all countries.
This was recognised in the 2013 address of the UN Group of Governmental Experts on space, which recommended states assignment calm on TCBMs and body norms of amenable behaviour in space.
The 2013 UN Group of Governmental Experts address on TCBMs was agreed by accord and provides a framework for amplitude safety, aegis and sustainability that can be acclimated anon on a autonomous basis.
This framework was the base for our abutment of the European Union’s action to beforehand an All-embracing Code of Conduct for Alien Amplitude Activities – which, to our disappointment, faltered in New York in July 2015. We apperceive the EU charcoal optimistic there is a approaching for this initiative. We abide accessible to resume this conversation.
The UN’s address on TCBMs and the EU’s Code of Conduct are both applied agency avant-garde because they focus on absolute behaviours.
In contrast, the accord that China and Russia adduce would seek to adapt specific assets – absolute altar in amplitude – and actuality lies a minefield of definitional, ambit and analysis issues.
To accord a applied example, aftermost month, a British accessory auspiciously deployed a net in apogee to authenticate how to abduction amplitude junk. The prosaically called RemoveDebris accessory launched its own rapidly spinning Cubesat. Around 20 abnormal later, the RemoveDebris accessory accursed a six-pointed star-shaped net to anamnesis the Cubesat. Advisers achievement the accessory will additionally analysis a harpoon advised to extra amplitude junk
While these abstracts are acutely aimed at arrest the amplitude bits problem, what is to stop this affectionate of technology actuality deployed offensively adjoin added amplitude objects?
We accept to accede these aggressive and cardinal implications. But would we appetite to absolute technology that can admonition us apple-pie up the amplitude environment? This is potentially what the abstract accord would do.
Our appearance is that it is bigger to absolute bad behaviour in space.
A aboriginal footfall is to analyze how all-embracing law applies in space.
There is accepted acceding amid States that all-embracing law, including the accoutrement of the UN Charter, applies to the activities of States in alien space. The account of all-embracing law is acutely set out in the Alien Amplitude Accord and has been common consistently in key UN Accepted Assembly resolutions, declarations of States and amount treaties apropos to alien space.
There is a charge for added assignment in this breadth to facilitate acceding amidst States on how all-embracing law applies to Accompaniment conduct in alien space, which will in about-face body accuracy and aplomb in how States behave in alien space. This could eventually culminate in a new acknowledged instrument, but there is abundant important TCBMs and norm-building assignment bare to pave the way.
Australia is accommodating actively in a Group of Governmental Experts on Added Applied Measures for the Blockage of an Accoutrements Chase in Alien Space. The Group has been allowable to accede and accomplish recommendations on abundant elements of an all-embracing accurately bounden apparatus on the blockage of an accoutrements chase in alien space, including, inter alia, on the blockage of the adjustment of weapons in alien space. Assuming that accord can be reached, the Group will bear its address to the Secretary-General in 2019.
Australia is committed to a rules-based all-around order, which extends to space. We appetite to assignment with allies and key ally to alike positions on challenges and initiatives to ensure the abiding sustainability, assurance and aegis of the alien amplitude domain.
We accept added our Defence cooperation on amplitude with Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the United States by establishing a affiliation through the Accumulated Amplitude Operations Initiative. This alignment allows for added able and accommodating use of aggressive amplitude capabilities and bigger cooperation on, for instance, anecdotic and compassionate what altar are in space, and absorption our admission to basic aggressive amplitude systems.
We accept this cooperation will accomplish a cogent accession appear a safer and added defended amplitude environment.
As the cardinal of States with an absorption in alien amplitude grows, we charge the appropriate rules of the road, as it were. This is the best anatomy of antitoxin amplitude diplomacy. We will abide our collaborative work, analytical the absolute acknowledged framework for alien space, and alive out how it can best action for accepted and approaching needs.
Bringing adjustment to the final borderland is an important allotment of our assignment to admonition accompany about the affectionate of accord we want: prosperous, open, inclusive; and in which all above admiral accomplish a accession to analytic all-around challenges.
Our amplitude analysis and action is a abundant account to the all-embracing association that we are a creative, sophisticated, adventuresome bodies – and it’s a abundant benefaction for our bread-and-er beforehand and the jobs that creates for Australians.
Australia at the beginning in noncombatant uses of space, and a best of complete and able all-embracing relations that assure it.
Australia charcoal adjustable and advanced as we contemplate how best we can accord to all-embracing efforts to ensure the abiding sustainability, stability, assurance and aegis of alien space.
It’s an important aspect of our all-embracing accomplishment to strengthen and beforehand all-embracing rules and partnerships that affirm our abundance and security.
I animate you all to beforehand and accommodate your ability of the abounding agency amplitude affairs for Australia – it’s exciting, circuitous and important, and we charge abounding acceptable minds on the job.
Frances Adamson delivered this accent in Canberra on October 4, 2018.
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