Informed Consent Rule in Suborbital Flights: in the context of the European Convention of Human Rights (ECHR)

Informed consent rule concerning the commercial space activities, especially suborbital flights, was firstly introduced in the US CSLAA 2004. It works on the basis of temporary licensing regime, thus establishing the operators the “duty to warn” and releasing the operators from liability of accidents due to inherent risks. The informed consent rule also boosted the early development of the US commercial industry of suborbital flights, which raised the discussion whether the rule of informed consent is desirable in Europe. Though the question may be answered in several aspects, e.g. tort law principles, the status of suborbital flights as aviation or space activities, technical safety development and space industry insurance status, this paper will address the question in the context of human rights law, the European Convention of Human Rights (ECHR) in particular.