Sutherland Spaceport could be first launch pad to use new environmentally friendly fuel source

18th Mar 2020
Sutherland Spaceport could be first launch pad to use new environmentally friendly fuel source

A new type of fuel that could provide Sutherland spaceport rockets with an environmentally-friendly lift-off and suit the Scottish weather perfectly is being developed by Scottish launch company, Skyrora. It has been reported that the new solution will be ready at around the same time the Sutherland spaceport goes into operation.

Skyrora, an Edinburgh-based company that is leading the research, places a lot of emphasis on developing cost effective new methods of launching small satellites.

The A’Mhoine peninsula has been chosen to be the prime location for the Sutherland spaceport since it is claimed to be the most suitable for vertically launching rockets to place satellites in orbit.


A Mhoine Peninsula
The proposed site for the Sutherland space port.

Recently, Skyrora tested its new fuel – Ecosene – in one of their 3D printed rocket engines; this product has been developed from plastic waste products. According to the company, this innovation will aid future launches and it has been deemed to be more ecological than other fuel sources.

It has also been claimed that the fuel will emit 45% less greenhouse gas emissions. Additionally, storing the fuel is even more efficient since it does not need cryogenic freezing; hence, it can be stored for long periods in tanks, perfect for the variable weather conditions expected at the Sutherland spaceport.


Sutherland spaceport
The proposed design for the Sutherland spaceport.

Skyrora reports that it has successfully tested the eco-liquid solution in a test site located at Fife, Scotland. The company states that 600 kg of usable fuel can be generated from 1,000-kg of certain plastic waste, all within 24 hours. The company is working towards revolutionizing the international space industry.

What Others Have To Say About Ecosene and The Sutherland Spaceport?

A Vice-chairman of the Space All-Party Parliamentary Group, Jamie Stone, had a meeting with Skyrora to learn more about Ecosene and the ongoing research.

According to Jamie Stone, space technology companies are advancing at a fast pace; sadly, they need to wait for the Government to catch up. Stone also mentioned that Skyrora is working towards developing a propellant fuel that can be stored easily since it does not have to be used immediately, unlike typical rocket fuel. Additionally, it is also perfect for the volatile Scottish weather.

Stone mentions that Sutherland spaceport will display the very best that the Highlands has to offer and also aid in boosting the economy and creating high-skilled jobs.

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