UK Space Agency announces new funding for satellite communications
by Staff Writers
London, UK (SPX) Jan 23, 2023
The UK Space Agency has announced 50 million pounds of funding for ambitious and innovative projects that will supercharge the UK's satellite communications industry. The funding is part of the European Space Agency (ESA) Advanced Research in Telecommunications Services (ARTES) program and will be used to develop new satellite constellations, ground systems, and end-to-end systems that deliver new services to customers.
This funding will help companies in the UK to integrate 5G systems and unlock connectivity for people and machines by upgrading infrastructure to enable new markets and services such as drones or driverless haulage. It will also be used to create space-based networks that rival cable-based terrestrial ones and help UK space operators to use disruptive new technologies and business models to enable global operations.
UK Minister for Space and Science George Freeman said: "Developing UK space capabilities and maximizing commercial opportunities are key to the National Space Strategy, as part of our plans to become a leading power in space and build on a sector already worth 16.5 billion pounds to the UK economy."
The UK already has a fast-growing satellite communications industry, with services contributing 10.4 billion pounds to the economy and the creation of more than 26,600 jobs. Successful companies will have the opportunity to help kick off the next generation of satellite communications hardware, paving the way for services that can provide better quality connectivity in remote and hard-to-reach places, higher bandwidth, lower latency, and increased security.
UK Space Agency CEO Dr. Paul Bate said: "This is an exciting time to be involved in the satellite communications industry as the world increases its dependence on these services to manage business, travel, security, infrastructure, connectivity, and more."
The UK is a leading investor in ARTES, having committed 190 million pounds to the program at the ESA Council of Ministers in November. Previous UK projects funded by ARTES include Sunrise and Pioneer, working with companies including Spire Global and AAC Clydespace to develop infrastructure that will enable new service providers with low cost and quick access to space.
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