Dan Smith, director at Skyrora
Scotland is on the cusp of joining an exciting new age for space exploration as 18 December marks the most rockets ever to launch from earth in a single 24-hour period.
Skyrora, a rocket developer headquartered in Edinburgh believes that the country will soon count its space industry among its key economic drivers, as it muscles in on the growing global demand for private satellite launches.
Daniel Smith, Director at Skyrora, said: “It is arguably the most exciting age of space exploration since the space race of the fifties and sixties.
“Today will not only mark a major new record, but it is indicative of the new commercial space race.
“That’s in part because all four of these launches are private. Commercial firms are driving this activity and Scotland should be very proud that in the coming years it will become a big part of this new commercial industry, as we prepare to have our own spaceport in the early 2020s.”
The four organisations behind the launches comprise of Elon Musk’s SpaceX, Jeff Bezos’s Blue Origin, France’s Arianespace and United Launch Alliance.
Skyrora is working on a developmental launch programme as it moves towards its aim of launching small satellites into orbit. The company recently announced its next sub-orbital launch, due to happen in 2019, with its new six-metre hybrid launch vehicle named SkyHy.
Should the vehicle blast off from UK soil, it would be the highest altitude private launch to ever occur from the UK, capable of reaching the edge of space and building upon the success of company's inaugural test launch last summer.
The completely British technology boasts an engine that has been tested a number of times and utilises the many strengths of hydrogen peroxide, providing the team with valuable experience that can be transferred for Skyrora’s future orbital requirements.
It fits perfectly with Skyrora’s technological plan, as it aims to capture its share of the fast-growing small satellite launch market.
Skyrora is developing launch vehicle technology that builds on previous rocket systems with the aim of reducing the cost of launches thanks to proven technology and advanced engineering methods.
The firm draws on Britain’s launch heritage and aims to build a robust supply chain while creating new employment opportunities to inspire the next generation of talent.
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