In a speech given at the Kennedy Space Center October, 1978, President Carter noted that the United States has invested about one hundred billion dollars in the United States space program and that the inauguration of the space shuttle will bring the second great era of the space age. He stated that the most paradoxical and exciting thing about the shuttle is that "it will make our use of space in the future routine and perhaps not very exciting. . . ." Routine it may not become for perhaps a generation, but exciting it will almost certainly be from the dramatic liftoff of the first orbiter in space, the Columbia, next year.

In my view there are four broad ranges of legal considerations which must be raised.