Scotland's Commercial Space Industry Joins the Four-Mile-High Club

By Gary Cutlack on at

There won't be too many science fiction novels or TV series based on the work of Skyrora and the launch of its Skylark Nano rocket from Scotland, although it is a vaguely successful first in the history of the UK's space industry. It's the first commercial rocket launch from Scotland, they say, and signals that there could indeed be a massive future space industry based up in the highlands.

Skyrora's vehicle blasted off and a little bit up into the sky from Kildermorie in Easter Ross, with the 2.5m rocket managing to get four miles above the hills. So if you have something that needs getting four miles up and then bringing immediately back down again in a descent slowed by parachute, get them on the line.

Engineer Robin Hague is excited even though space is officially thought to begin quite higher up at about the 62 mile level, and told the BBC that: "This particular launch enabled us to test a system on a small scale using commercially available propulsion systems. It is a cost-effective and a quick way for us to try things out for real in advance of a big liquid-powered rocket coming together." [BBC]