A primary goal of OES is to advance American space leadership by pursing and maintaining a rules-based international framework for the long-term sustainability, commercialization and utilization of space, and by strengthening America’s role in coalitions and bilateral engagements that extend human presence deeper into outer space for long-term exploration and utilization.  The Office of Space Affairs (OES/SA) pursues this goal by:

  • Seeking international support for commercial exploitation of space that ensures responsible behavior while placing minimal burden on the U.S. private sector.
  • Consulting with other nations on the enhanced civil use of space for science, Earth observation, civil positioning, navigation, and timing, and other space-based applications.
  • Pursuing agreement among space-faring nations and commercial interests on an approach to post-International Space Station exploration, to include plans for space-based platforms for further exploration.

OES/SA leads the U.S. delegation to the United Nations Committee on the Peaceful uses of Outer Space; maintains the official U.S. registry of objects launched into outer space; oversees implementation of the 1998 Intergovernmental Agreement on the International Space Station;  and leads U.S Government consultations with other countries and international organizations on space policy and law.  OES/SA also leads interagency coordination on all civil space-related international agreements implementing important NASA, NOAA, and USGS cooperation with other space agency partners, and plays a key role in the implementation of National Space Policy focused on dual-use space applications such as global navigation satellite systems (GNSS), satellite-based earth observation, and the monitoring of physical phenomena in the Sun-Earth system (space weather).

U.S. Department of State

The Lessons of 1989: Freedom and Our Future