The UK space program is gaining traction, attracting private companies working in the area to the country. At this time, the US space launch Astra Space announced the intention to launch launches from the territory of the state, which in March this year successfully launched the first commercial mission to put the satellites into orbit. Astra Space has signed a related agreement with the SaxaVord spacecraft located in the Shetland Islands.
Astra Space, which orbits miniature satellites, has already conducted launches from space on Kodiak Island, Alaska, and from a base in Cape Canaveral, Florida. The company insisted that opening an office in Scotland would allow Astra Space to expand its range of services. The startup plans to launch the first release of the SaxaVord Cosmotrome site in 2023. Although the site has only recently begun to develop, other companies, such as Lockheed Martin, have also shown interest.
“The additional features, flexibility and publishing capabilities that this partnership brings will allow it to meet the needs of Astra’s customers and directly match SaxaVord Spaceport’s economic investment and environmental goals,” said Matt Cancer, Vice President, Astra Space.
Another spacecraft, known as the Space Hub Sutherland, is being built off the north coast of Scotland, with the first launch expected in 2023. SaxaVord and Space Hub Sutherland provide customers with the infrastructure for vertical launch. In addition, a space station in Cornwall, on the southwest coast of the United Kingdom, will allow rockets to be launched horizontally from aircraft. Virgin Orbit is planning the first such launch this summer.
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