Have you been wondering why SpaceX has not been able to broad cast its Ten Iridium Satellite that is released into orbit from its Falcon 9 stage? Well this is because the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has recently enforced a law that requires SpaceX and all other commercial space companies to apply for a license that will give them the right to broadcast videos from orbit as required by the National and Commercial Space Program act.
This licensing law has been there since the year 2010 but it was not being used until recently, even though SpaceX has been broadcasting videos from orbit to earth for many years without this licensing law but apparently that will no longer be possible if they do not adhere to this licensing law. Some of the SpaceX fans are blaming SpaceX for its recent substantial launch of ‘Starman’, people tend to think that the launch of ‘Starman’ attracted so much attention and that is what caught NOAA’s attention which may have made them cross the threshold and start licensing commercial space companies.
However this does not mean that SpaceX was operating illegally, it simply means that either NOAA started enforcing this law differently from the past years or they have been sleeping on their jobs because there is no concrete explanation as to why they have decide to enforce the now since 2010. Although the whole story behind the missing SpaceX live broadcast into orbit is said to be a murky bureaucratic affair.
However SpaceX is working on obtaining this broadcasting license for its cameras to prevent another blackout in the near future, full licensing will prolong the future launch of its webcasts. SpaceX is determined to be fully licensed at least before the launch of its Falcon 9 Block 5 which is expected to launch soon. Acquiring this license early will be for the good of its fans, to avoid another cut off when people are really expecting the launch of the Block 5. But the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration says that it was SpaceX commercial company who reached out to them wanting to obtain the license and not the other way round. At this point it is unclear why the license issue came up now after all those years and the blame game on both NOAA and SpaceX is confusing the fans.