A team of scientists and experts are inviting people from around the world to join a “first nation state in space”. They say the move will foster peace, open up access to space technologies and offer protection for citizens of planet Earth. Asgardia “will become a place in orbit which is truly ‘no man’s land.”
Dubbed “Asgardia” after one of the mythical worlds inhabited by the Norse gods, the team say the “new nation” will eventually become a member of the United Nations, with its own flag and anthem devised by members of the public through a series of competitions.
According to information given on Project website, Asgardia “will offer an independent platform free from the constraint of a land-based country’s laws. It will become a place it in orbit which is truly ‘no man’s land’”. Initially, it would seem, this new nation will consist of a single satellite, scheduled to be launched next year, with its citizens residing firmly on terra firma.
However the founding members of Asgardia have no immediate plans to send their own cohort of human beings into space just yet. Lena De Winne, director of the Vienna-based Aerospace International Research Center (AIRC) and a senior member of “Asgardia” project told in her interview they were not claiming to have a human launch just yet, but they were not saying either it would never happen.
“We just hope the project is doing something right. No one is physically flying into space, it’s more about the philosophy and legality of becoming a new nation in space.” “There’s geopolitics — we want the project to be seen as astropolitics,” Lena De Winne told Sputnik.
According to the project website “Any human living on Earth can become a citizen of Asgardia,” with the site featuring a simple registration form. At the time of writing more than 1000 individuals had already signed up. Besides a great interest in joining the new space station was expressed by more than 100 thousand people on internet. “We welcome people from all countries — we would love people to come and join us,” the former employee of the European Space Agency said. The new space nation intends to elect its own government ministers and has already implemented a temporary management team with the intention of organizing elections.
A Russian businessman and nanoscientist who also founded the Vienna-based Aerospace International Research Center and is currently chairman of Unesco’s Science of Space committee, Dr Igor Ashurbeyli says that the first satellite, “symbolically carrying the new nation” will be launched into space in early 2018. The project team claims that responsibility and liability for objects sent into space lies on the new “space nation” itself.
And while the project does not currently include plans to set up an Asgardian settlement in space, Ashurbeyli believes life beyond Earth will be vital to the future of humankind. “We are laying the foundations to make that possible in the distant future,” he said.
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