ESA funding boost for Skyrora and Orbex

25th Mar 2021
ESA funding boost for Skyrora and Orbex

It’s been a busy week in space and some significant developments have seen increased support for the UK’s own space ambitions, as the European Space Agency issued co-funding to two rocket manufacturers with bases in the UK.

Both, Edinburgh-based Skyrora Ltd and Orbex, who have a facility in Forres have been issued funding as part of the ESA Boost! programme.

Scottish-based space companies secure £8.5 million to bring pioneering launch technologies to market – GOV.UK (

The Edinburgh firm, Skyrora, are at a more advanced stage in their launch vehicle production and readiness cycle as they have announced quite a number of milestones recently including live tests of their 3D printed engines as well as test launches in the north of Scotland. They received £2.5m to help take their project over the line.

Orbex Space needed a bit more of a boost to get them to the stage where their launch vehicle is “mission ready”, so £6.5m was issued to the company.

This development is the most significant sign of ESA support for the UK’s launch ambitions and should help to accelerate the country’s efforts.

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