Illustration for article titled Outer Space Gets Its First Lawyer

As if rampant piles of orbiting junk weren't enough, humans have now given outer space another of our finest creations: a lawyer. Obligatory lawyer joke aside, law student Michael Dodge graduated this weekend from the University of Mississippi with the first-ever (at least in the US) certificate in space law. And not a moment too soon. With all the hubbub surrounding weaponization of space, and an emerging industry of privatized space interests on the horizon, there's sure to be plenty of casework for Dodge and anyone who happens to follow in his footsteps.


Space law has been around in one form or another for about 40 years now, mostly to prevent countries from going to war over who owns the Moon. Things have gotten a little more entertaining since the rise of the internet, as 'entrepreneurs' have come out of the woodwork claiming they own Mars, etc. and then selling extra-terrestrial real estate online.

But Ole Miss has taken thing to the next level, having set up the National Center for Remote Sensing, Air and Space Law in 1999. They even publish the Journal of Space Law. That's forward thinking, but what they really need is a place to hold those space law trials: an orbital, zero-g courtroom.



Image: Space Law Probe

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