The aerospace industry has welcomed a centre that will help UK businesses develop satellite technologies.
The ‘Catapult’ centre is being set up by the Technology Strategy Board (TSB) and will act as a technology and innovation hub for new satellite-based products and services.
The centre will focus on applications of research and development in communications, broadcasting, positioning and observation. It will also provide in-orbit test facilities for UK organisations to demonstrate new satellite technologies.
Iain Gray, chief executive of the TSB, said: ‘The Catapult will help UK businesses create many products and services across a wide range of areas, such as distance learning, telemedicine, urban planning, precision agriculture, traffic management and meteorology.’
The TSB believes that the Satellite Applications Catapult will help achieve targets set out in the UK Space Innovation and Growth Strategy to grow UK market share from six per cent to 10 per cent by 2030 and create 100,000 high-value jobs.
Aerospace industry body ADS welcomed the announcement that the centre will be dedicated to developing satellite applications. Graham Chisnall, deputy chief executive officer and managing director of aerospace at ADS, said: ‘The announcement is an important recognition of the UK space industry and the UK’s successful specialisation in satellite technologies.
‘This is just one of several steps being taken through government, academia and industry to see the UK reach full potential in an area that, through forecasting alone, is worth nearly £1bn, and therefore the industry and its 70,000 employees warmly welcome it.’