Surrey Satellite Expands LEO Platform Capability with VESTA Nanosat

VESTA nanosat (Credit: Surrey Satellite)
VESTA nanosat (Credit: Surrey Satellite)

GUILDFORD, UK (SSTL PR) — Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd (SSTL) has signed a contract with Honeywell to supply the VESTA satellite platform, a technology demonstration mission that will test a new two-way VHF Data Exchange System (VDES) payload for the exactEarth advanced maritime satellite constellation. The contract was signed as part of an MOU between Honeywell Aerospace and the UK Space Agency.

John Paffett, SSTL’s Director of Telecommunications, commented “The SSTL nanosatellite range provides flexible and highly capable payload accommodation, engineered with SSTL’s unrivalled class-leading reliability and I am delighted that VESTA will be first nanosatellite to be manufactured in our new NanoLab here in Guildford.”

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UK Space Agency Invests £1.15 Million in Launch Research

UK_space_agencySWINDON, UK (UKSA PR) — We are investing £1.15 million to fund preparatory research about sub-orbital spaceflight and small satellite launches from the UK.

In 2015, the National Space Policy set out the government’s ambition to establish a spaceport in the UK. In February 2016, proposals were invited for industrial research projects to investigate the challenges associated with the introduction and operation of commercial viable services in the UK, and to identify the underpinning technological developments required to support these activities.

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UK, UAE Increase Collaboration in Space

UK_space_agencySWINDON, England (UKSA PR) — The UK Space Agency and UAE Space Agency today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to create a strategic space partnership.

Signed by the UK Space Agency Chief Executive, Dr David Parker, and H.E Dr Khalifa Al Romaithi, Chairman of the UAE Space Agency, the MoU allows for extensive cooperative activities in the field of space between the UK and the UAE, including partnerships in scientific missions and outreach efforts.

Today’s agreement builds upon decades of friendship and strategic partnership between the UK and UAE.

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And Then There Were Six: UK Narrows Spaceport Field

Short list of UK spaceport candidates (Credit: CAA)
Short list of UK spaceport candidates (Credit: CAA)

SWINDON, England (UKSA PR) — Plans for Britain to be home of Europe’s first spaceport moved a step closer today, 3 March 2015.

Publishing the outcome of a 3 month consultation with a range of interested parties, the government confirmed widespread support for its plans. This paves the way towards making commercial spaceflight operations in the UK a reality.

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UK Deepens China Ties as Part of Broad International Cooperative Effort

As British Prime Minister David Cameron and Chinese Premier Li Keqiang look on, representatives from the UK Space Agency and the China National Space Administration sign a memoradum of understand to cooperate space science, space applications, education and training. (Credit: CNSA)
As British Prime Minister David Cameron and Chinese Premier Li Keqiang look on, representatives from the UK Space Agency and the China National Space Administration sign a memorandum of understanding to cooperate on space science, space applications, education and training. (Credit: CNSA)

Backed by an £80m ($131 million) fund, the UK Space Agency has embarked on an ambitious effort to forge deeper cooperative ties with other nations, with the first target being the surging Chinese space program.

The new five-year Global Collaborative Space Program seeks to leverage the nation’s expertise in satellite telecommunications, space data applications and small satellites, the UK Space Agency says. Initial funding will be focused on using space assets and data for social and economic development.

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UK Space Agency Signs Deals With NASA, Roscosmos

The newly created UK Space Agency signed agreements with NASA and the Russian space agency Roskosmos to facilitate join cooperation across a range of areas.

The NASA agreement “identify new cooperative activities related to Earth and space science, life sciences, and space exploration, in addition to other areas of mutual interest.”

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