Connect with us

Internet

Can the UK Host Europe’s First Spaceport?

In the race to launch the first rocket from Europe, can the UK come out on top? With the plans for two new UK spaceports based in Scotland underway, these may present Great Britain’s best chance of success.

mm

Published

on

Can the UK Host Europes First Spaceport

The United Kingdom can boast an enviable record of excellence with its contributions to science, engineering, and technology, especially in the field of aeronautics. Therefore, it’s surprising that Great Britain hasn’t yet achieved a vertical rocket launch from the country’s soil, despite the abundance of scientific expertise in the nation’s space industry.

Now, the United Kingdom is targeting 10% of the worldwide space industry by 2030, and its success in the endeavor is likely to hinge on the progress of two new UK spaceports.

1. Spaceport Development in the UK

Despite the difficulties posed by the coronavirus pandemic and the continuing fallout from Brexit, the UK is still aiming to build new spaceports on British soil very shortly. The government and space industry hope to boost British enterprise, provide a platform for the nation’s scientific talent, and secure considerable economic benefits.

UK science minister Amanda Solloway stated that the new UK spaceports would “cement the UK’s status as a global space superpower.” The UK already makes sizeable contributions to the global space industry with its technology exports. The annual UK satellite export market is valued at over $300 million, while more than £360 billion of broader UK economic activity is supported by satellite services.

Indeed, small satellite (smallsat) technology promises the most significant short-term growth for the space industry’s future. Many of Britain’s most innovative smallsat companies are located in Scotland, which, combined with the local geography, makes the UK’s northernmost part an ideal base of operations for developing the country’s space industry.

It’s no surprise, then, that Scotland has been chosen as the location for two different spaceports with two very different profiles. While plans for other UK spaceports in Wales and Cornwall are also in progress, if Britain launches Europe’s first vertical rocket, it will likely originate from one of the Scottish spaceports. Now, it continues to be discussed which will strike first: Space Hub Sutherland or the Shetland Space Centre.

2. Space Hub Sutherland vs. Shetland Space Centre

With a proposed site amidst the beautiful Scottish Highlands on the A’ Mhòine peninsula, the construction of Space Hub Sutherland is scheduled to begin soon, with an eye on launching rockets before the end of 2022. The spaceport will launch rockets carrying payloads of up to 500 kg, the first of which will be a rocket made by Orbex. Although based in Scotland, Orbex’s founders hail from Denmark and Germany, with most of Orbex’s employees working in Denmark rather than in the UK.

spacex Host Europes First Spaceport

Previously, the American aerospace giant Lockheed Martin had come aboard as a partner at Sutherland Space Hub. However, it seems the US company thought better of the decision, as they have now turned their efforts to the Shetland Space Centre instead. This is not the only setback that Orbex and Sutherland Space Hub have had to weather.

The original design for the spaceport included two vertical launchpads to enable up to 30 launches every year. However, due to ecological restrictions, the spaceport has been limited to a single launch pad and a maximum of 12 launches every year. It is also unclear why Orbex would have sought a bailout loan despite having secured millions in investment for the project.

Other objections to the Sutherland spaceport have come from Danish billionaire and the richest man in Scotland, Holch Povlsen. The emigrant entrepreneur has cited environmental concerns that conflict with the work done by his Wildland firm, which aims to rewild the Scottish Highlands. However, it’s also worth noting that Povlsen has a £1.4 million stake in the competing Shetland Space Centre, which he argues has more potential for success.

Shetland Space Centre is also looking to be up and running with its first rocket launch by the end of 2022, from a site in Lamba Ness on Unst, one of the Shetland Islands. The plans boast three launchpads capable of launching payloads of up to 1,000 kg for up to 30 launches every year. Lockheed Martin is partnering with space technology firm ABL Space Systems for a series of maiden launches from the spaceport.

Although the project promises to contribute £5 million to the local economy, planning approval has yet to be granted. The preferred site will require the demolition of a Second World War radar facility, which Historic Environment Scotland has argued is too high a price to pay, and suggested suitable alternatives could easily be found elsewhere.

3. When Will UK Spaceports Be Operational

The coronavirus pandemic has caused mass disruption to almost every industry on Earth, and the commercial space sector is no different. That said, the global space industry continued to grow in 2020, which is perhaps a testament to the sector’s future-proof potential. Suppose the UK is serious about leveraging its space industry to acquire a share of this market.

In that case, UK spaceports will have to be constructed before long, especially if Great Britain wants to realize its ambitions of becoming the first European nation to play host to a vertical rocket launch. Meanwhile, on the continent, countries such as Germany, Sweden, France, Norway, and Portugal, are all working towards making their space industries sufficiently competitive to increase their global market shares.

4. Conclusion: Healthy Competition

The UK spaceports planned for Scotland both face their own set of challenges. However, the presence of two different spaceports in Scotland can only help to improve Britain’s overall capacity for commercial space launches that are likely to make the country an attractive proposition for future investment. Neither the Shetland Space Centre nor Sutherland Space Hub will find themselves wanting for customers if one or both of them can demonstrate the capacity for successful vertical rocket launches.

The global satellite market proliferates as more and more industries rely on satellite technology to stay competitive. If these UK spaceports can establish themselves as Europe’s premier launch facilities, both the spaceport developers and the broader British economy are sure to reap the benefits.

We are an Instructor's, Modern Full Stack Web Application Developers, Freelancers, Tech Bloggers, and Technical SEO Experts. We deliver a rich set of software applications for your business needs.

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Computer

5 Features Of A Proactive IT Strategy

Here are some of the features that’ll help you have a clear understanding of what a proactive IT strategy is:

mm

Published

on

Action Plan Process Strategy Vision Concept

Some organizations take a reactive and break-fix approach to their organization’s IT support system. Essentially, they wait until a machine breaks down, and then they start making an effort to fix it. This approach usually leads to unwarranted interruptions in the organization’s workflow.

To avoid such, it’s best to have proactive IT strategies. Experts continuously monitor and assess whether the systems are in the right conditions, check for potential trouble beforehand, and fix them before they become a significant problem.

For this reason, you’d like to be proactive in your business and enjoy the benefits that come with it. Here are some of the features that’ll help you have a clear understanding of what a proactive IT strategy is:

1. Learns From The Past

To avoid making mistakes, it’s good to understand the errors that have happened in the past and come up with measures to prevent repeating the same mistakes. For instance, if your business database was hacked, it’s critical to investigate and try to pinpoint the security loophole that made the breach possible.

Perhaps it was due to the lack of a firewall, or the passwords were easy enough for Tom, Dick, and Harry to guess. Moving on, you’d want to have a firewall in place, create stronger passwords that are hard to crack, and also enforce other measures to make your data more secure.

2. 24/7 Vigilance

You understand that cybercriminals are working day and night to access sensitive business data and jeopardize your business. It might be a costly miscalculation on your part if you leave the security bit of your system to a nine to five employee. A lot of damage can happen during the lengthy period they’re not at work. And by the time they report to work, the cybercriminals may have accomplished their mission of stealing data or corrupting your system.

What you need is round-the-clock surveillance of your IT system. It may not be possible with an in-house IT department, and that’s why it’s advisable to hire a managed IT solutions company. Such firms have a large team of experts that can instantly respond to any data breach or technical hitch in your system. This way, you can prevent hackers from going too far with their malicious attacks and significantly reduce your server downtime.

5 Features Of A Proactive IT Strategy

3. Keeps Pace With Latest Trends

Currently, almost every company is undergoing digital transformation due to the dozens of benefits set to be reaped. Some of the latest IT trends you need to consider include cloud computing, artificial intelligence, edge computing, machine learning, cyber security, virtual reality, the internet of things, and robotic process automation.

Being up to date with the current technological trends gives your organization a competitive advantage. Consumers worldwide prefer doing business with companies that embrace the latest technologies. The chances are high that your competitors are also using modern technology to run their businesses. You wouldn’t want to lag with outdated technology, as you’ll never manage to amass a large customer base like them.

4. Remote Accessibility

In today’s world, it might be inconvenient to restrict operations to a stationery office or location. Thus, you wouldn’t want to have servers with no internet connection. Your IT staff and other employees must be able to access the company database from elsewhere other than the office. This enables them to work while traveling or from home.

It also enables you to employ managed service providers. They can control your IT system from their offices without having to report in person at your business premises. This way, they can quickly update the system or detect a problem and fix it regardless of where they are. It also helps a lot during those times your workplace is inaccessible, perhaps due to government-enforced lockdowns or natural disasters, such as floods.

5. Tight Security

A proactive IT strategy ensures that the organization’s security systems are tight. This will reduce the risk of data breaches which can cost your company millions of dollars and interrupt your company’s workflow. Millions of businesses worldwide fall prey to cybercriminals every year. Thus, security is of utmost importance to every business that wholly or partially operates online. Here are a few tips to improving the safety of your IT system:

  • Assigning minimum privileges to administrators
  • Identifying vulnerabilities, such as the Bring Your Device (BYOD) approach, and planning for various related threats
  • Using several layers of independent defenses, such as solid passwords plus two-factor authentication
  • Regularly backing up all vital business data
  • Continuously conducting risk assessments and testing the effectiveness of the security systems implemented

Conclusion

Some of the critical features of such a system include digital technology, tight security, remote accessibility, and 24/7 vigilance. A proactive IT strategy enables you to see threats from afar and develop solutions to combat them before the molehill turns into a mountain. To make this a reality in your business, consider outsourcing managed IT solutions from reputable firms.

Continue Reading
Advertisement
Computer40 mins ago

5 Features Of A Proactive IT Strategy

Computer Network1 hour ago

Top Crucial Steps For CEO in Case of Ransomware Attack

Marketing13 hours ago

What is The Gray Market, and How to Protect Against it?

Games1 day ago

Basic Rules and Guide on How to Play a Sudoku Free Puzzle Game

Internet2 days ago

Comprehensive Guide to Gigabit Speeds

Bitcoin1 week ago

Check Out the Remarkable Advantages Which an Individual Can Attain by Using Bitcoin!

Internet1 week ago

4 Best Phone Providers You Can Choose to Connect with Your Loved Ones

Cryptocurrency1 week ago

PrimeXBT Retrospective And What’s Next For The Ultra Hot Trading Platform

Gadgets1 week ago

Tips For Better Sports Photography

Digital Marketing2 weeks ago

3 Reasons Why TikTok is Pivotal for Influencer Marketing

Advertisement

Trending