Spaceport Cornwall top ranked in UK
“New Space People” have this week published the results of an annual survey they conducted involving over 15,000 space industry professionals. The survey ranked industry executives as well as organisations according to their status as a strategic enabler, with Spaceport Cornwall ranking surprisingly high.
NSP conduct this survey annually, so it was interesting to see the considerable change in position from last year’s results. Particularly amongst the UK space-related organisations.
The most prominent and significant change was with Spaceport Cornwall, which was ranked at no. 1 of over 2,000 organisations from the 25th position in last year’s report. But even more significant was that they were ranked at 483 in the 2017/2018 report. The company’s director, Miles Carden, also jumped up in the rankings moving from 21st position last year to take up the no. 2 spot.
Another dramatic change in ranking, but in the opposite direction, was launch company, Orbex, who seem to have drifted into relative obscurity, certainly in the minds of the space industry professionals that took part in the survey, moving from 6th place last year to 202nd place and their CEO, Chris Larmour, going from 6th place last year to 141st.
The Scottish launch company, Skyrora, shifted from 12th position last year to 49th this year.
So, have the UK launch companies just been too quiet of late, with the exception of Spaceport Cornwall? Or has Space Cornwall’s (mostly negative) media coverage simply kept them top of mind.
Spaceport Cornwall gathered a lot of media attention when the protest group, Extinction Rebellion staged a very elaborate protest during the Cornwall Council’s funding meeting when it was announced they would give the Spaceport Cornwall project a funding boost of £10.3m.
The Extinction Rebellion protestors raised concerns about billionaire businessman, Richard Branson, gaining funds from the public purse as well as their environmental concerns at a time when Cornwall Council had committed to tackling climate change.
Given that the vertical launch projects across Scotland haven’t been built yet, it may simply be perceived that the Space Cornwall project looks easier to deliver and likely to be executed first. Whether this perception is valid or not, it may simply be the opinion that is thrusting it into the spotlight.
Source: New Space People