UK: The UK Space Agency is embarking on a tour of the country with industry workshops and public open evenings on LaunchUK, which is a campaign to enable small satellite rocket launches and sub-orbital flights from UK spaceports.
The Government wants to make the UK a leading destination for companies offering launch services. New legislation to regulate launch is currently before the British Parliament and in early 2018 the UK Space Agency will announce the outcome of its call for grant proposals to achieve low-cost access to space. Total 26 proposals were submitted to the call, and the UK Space Agency is currently considering grant applications to support the first launches from the UK.
These initial missions from the UK will provide a fillip to the commercial launch market, where multiple small satellite launch vehicles and sub-orbital spaceplanes could pursue rising global demand from a number of UK spaceports.
Launch companies that will base themselves in the UK will benefit from access to the UK’s world class space and aerospace manufacturers in their proximity. The LaunchUK roadshows aim to raise awareness of this opportunity and the wider benefits of having launch capability in the UK.
Science Minister Jo Johnson, speaking at the first Launch UK event in Belfast on 9 November, said:
“This is genuinely one of the most exciting industrial opportunities the country has.
“We need to get behind it as government and we are. We’re pulling together a really exciting programme for the industry that we want you to be aware of to take full advantage of it.
“One of the things we’re doing is to put in place a new regulatory framework that will make it possible for us to compete in new segments of the space value chain.
“We see this as an opportunity that is going to be good for businesses in this sector throughout the UK, in every part of the country.”