sci22002 — Announcement
Addressing the Impact of Satellite Constellations on Astronomy: The Way Forward
January 7, 2022
Launches of low Earth orbit commercial constellation satellites within the last two years have introduced a new phase in the industrialization of space. At present, these satellites create an enormous unfunded mandate for astronomy. Their O/IR trails and their radio transmission will have major impacts on astronomy from the visible to the radio; wide-field survey instruments such as Vera C. Rubin Observatory could be especially severely impacted by myriad trails of reflected sunlight. The astronomy community urgently needs a multi-stakeholder center dedicated to the mitigation of these impacts.
In 2020 and 2021, two NSF-funded SATCON workshops and two United Nations-mandated Dark and Quiet Skies meetings examined this issue and developed recommendations for mitigation measures and pathways to implement those recommendations. The report of Dark and Quiet Skies II will be published in our archive here with the other reports on Monday 10 January 2022.
Satellites will have a very large impact on astronomy. The industry is moving rapidly with launch and deployment. We must act immediately to preserve, to the greatest extent possible, the source of our data.
About the Announcement