Big plans for Uk space agency. £ 1.7 million has been set aside for new space projects. See here what projects

31/01/2022
Credit: UK space agency
Credit: UK space agency

UK Science Minister George Freeman has announced that £ 1.7 million will be allocated for new projects to support sustainable space operations by the UK space agency. The money will be used in 13 upcoming space agency projects. The 13 projects will have a very useful mission. Specifically, they will help track, locate and eliminate space debris around the Earth, so the risk of a collision between spacecraft and space debris will decrease significantly. 

In addition, the projects include an instrument to protect the spacecrafts from possible collisions with space debris. Thanks to advanced technology, cleaning the Earth's orbit of space debris will be as safe as possible. According to a post from the Uk Space Agency, spacecraft will take space debris into the atmosphere (of Earth) to dispose of it. "They include an AI-based tool which can take autonomous action to avoid a collision and another which will see multiple small spacecraft fired at debris before taking it into the atmosphere to dispose of it." said the Uk space agency. 

The missions (the 13 projects) that the Uk space agency does will certainly be appreciated, being very important in these days, when space exploration is developing and needs security. There are 330 million pieces of space debris, including 36,500 objects larger than 10 cm in Earth orbit. All of this can make it harder or worse for a spacecraft to take off from Earth. We urgently need measures to clear the Earth's orbit of these debris, including obsolete satellites and other larger objects. 

In addition, a number of satellites are launched each year, some of which have very important missions, including monitoring the Earth's weather and communications satellites. To avoid a disaster, we must act as soon as possible. And the UK did it, being the biggest contributor to ESA's Space Security Program. 

Science Minister George Freeman said:

"Like debris on Everest, the first generation of space exploration and satellite launch has left millions of pieces of dangerous satellite fragments and 4,000 redundant satellites in orbit."

"As our reliance on satellites for everyday activity grows, and the UK becomes a leading hub of small satellite design, manufacturing and launch this year via Virgin Orbit in Cornwall, this debris now poses a serious threat to our £16 billion space sector."

"That's why we have made debris mitigation and removal - and the long-term importance of space sustainability - key elements of our National Space Strategy."

"These projects will help put the UK at the forefront of both protecting the space environment for future activity, and accelerating UK technology leadership."

 Managing Director, Astroscale Ltd and Co-Chair of the IOSM Working Group, UKspace, John Auburn said:

"We need to act now to build the UK's capability with the right level of UK investment; enhanced UK regulation and policy; supply chain development, and international partnerships. The In-orbit Servicing and Manufacturing (IOSM) working group, part of UK space, is comprised of more than 65 members."

"This rapidly expanding group is driving forward a shared vision to gain first leader commercial advantage in the in-orbit servicing and manufacturing sector. We must accelerate our efforts to secure a safe and sustainable space environment and see it as a natural extension of the Earth's environment. This will help to protect vital services, including those monitoring climate change, weather forecasting, disaster management and digital services for citizens and ensure we can provide them for generations to come."

Article by: Andacs Robert Eugen, on 31 January 2022, at 09:18 am Los Angeles time

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