Once the world looked to Scotland for our manufacturing, ship building and locomotives, the great vehicles that drove the industrial revolution. Today, with our dynamic and growing space sector it’s our satellites. Across Scotland, our cities and regions are at the forefront of a new space economy.Quietly industrious, Glasgow produces more satellites than anywhere else in the world outside of California. In Edinburgh, NASA designed humanoid robots are being programmed for missions to Mars. In the north of Scotland plans are underway to construct the UK’s first Space Port – a game changing project that will enable Scotland to build and launch satellites, delivering transformational growth.
In Astronomy Scotland has vast open spaces and dark skies. In the south Scotland has the Scottish Dark Sky observatory and the Galloway forest Dark Sky Park, the first of its kind in Europe. The University of St Andrews observatory holds the James Gregory Telescope, the largest in the UK, which has been involved in observing astronomical targets such as galaxies, galactic nuclei, minor planets, young stars and monitoring space debris.
In Scotland the space industry is thriving. More than 80 UK space industry firms have headquarters located in Scotland, and in satellite production and design we are a global leader. Scottish firms such as Clydespace, Skyrora, Alba Orbital and Spire are conducting ground breaking research and developing new technologies that change how we operate in space. As the final frontier comes ever closer, with commercial flights expected soon and small satellite technology growing and becoming available to new markets, Scotland is poised to once again lead the world in this key industry. Scotland is where Ideas Become Legend.
Hear from Malcolm MacDonald, Director of the Scottish Centre of Excellence in Satellite Applications (SoXSA).