After USA’s SpaceX, Britain Now Planning To Make Spaceport By 2018

Skylon Takeoff
Skylon Takeoff
Skylon Takeoff

As Britain’s Space Industry picking up a good speed, the country’s government is planning to build a Spaceport by 2018. The Dept. Of Business, Innovations and Skills will be revealing on Tuesday that Britain’s Space Industry has grown by over 7.2% and is worth almost $ 19 billion and is employing 34,000 people and aim is to be worth $ 69 billion by 2030 and employing 100,000 people.

David Willets, a British conservative party politician, quoted:

With a spaceport, we will add significantly to our ability to create a very strong UK space industry

Companies such as Virgin Galactic, XCOR, Skylon and Surrey Satellites Technologies which recently launched TechDemoSat-1 by Soyuz-2 rocket from Baikonur Cosmodrome. Another spark of the industry which gave Britain’s government to rethink the strategy in space is Alan Bond’s Reaction Engines, in which government has already invested £60m, is developing a reusable Spaceplane called Skylon which will be able to take off and land like a plane.

Skylon Diagram
Skylon Diagram

From BBC:
“We have worked out the regulatory regime we need to launch spaceships in Britain and assessed what kind of aviation checks will have to be imposed when we put craft into space,” said the science minister, David Willetts. “In the wake of that work we have now created a shortlist of locations for the first British spaceport.”

Virgin Galactic
Virgin Galactic

The spaceport is planned to be ready by 2018, but the location is still undecided. The government is still studying the possible locations and keeping them all secret. On the other hand Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic set to take off from a purpose-built spaceport in New Mexico at the end of the year. Passengers will pay around £120,000 for a 150-minute flight in a tiny spaceplane that will take them to a height of around 100km (62 miles) and will allow them to experience about six minutes of zero-gravity.

Source: theGuardian.com
Image Courtesy: BBC | Wikipedia | Virgin

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