UK preparing to launch US rockets into space: Report
Iran Press TV
Mon Nov 20, 2017 10:59AM
The UK could soon be launching US spacecraft into space as part of its plans to foray into new markets after leaving the European Union (EU), according to a new report.
Desperate for a trade deal with the US, officials from Prime Minister Theresa May's government met with their American counterparts last week to talk trade, and space was a key item on their agenda, the Telegraph reported Sunday.
London wants to make sure that America's space technology matches its safety and environmental standards, while also reassuring the Americans that their knowledge and know-how will be used securely in Britain.
Under the new program, the UK plans to build a spaceport complete with launch rockets beginning from 2020 to make sure that various commercial operators, including those from the US, can use the site.
The country is also putting new airspace regulations into place in an effort to keep up with the latest rocket, satellite and spacecraft advancements.
"There is a global shift towards a more diverse, commercial launch market and a sharp rise in demand for launch services is expected from 2020 onwards," said a spokesperson for the UK Space Agency.
While the UK's distance from the Equator makes it impossible for rockets to get the maximum boost from the earth's rotation, the agency insists that there are still hopes for a commercial space program for certain orbits.
"The UK is well placed to service this demand, we have the right geography, industry and environment to host commercial launch services to polar and sun synchronous orbits," the spokesperson added.
Other topics discussed by two sides in the meeting included intellectual property law and its enforcement, financial services and stability for US banks operating in the EU from the UK after Brexit.
In late July, US President Donald Trump said in a tweet that he was working on a "major trade deal" with the UK.
In August, he met May on the sidelines of the G20 meeting in Hamburg, assuring her that "trade will be a very big factor" in their "special relationship."
UK Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn has made it clear that he would make sure that a "sweetheart" trade deal with Britain would never go through.
|Join the GlobalSecurity.org mailing list|