Lee Rosen Discusses the Pull of Scotland’s Skyrora

6th Aug 2022
Lee Rosen Discusses the Pull of Scotland’s Skyrora

Lee Rosen, a US Air Force veteran, was in Edinburgh when a chance encounter with a model rocket led to him leaving SpaceX for Skyrora in Scotland. 

Rosen was visiting his daughter who attends university in Scotland, and found himself walking down the famous Princes Street when he saw a model rocket in the headquarters window of Skyrora. This caused him to look up the Scottish start-up online, finding the CEO Volodymyr Levykin on LinkedIn, and as the saying goes, the rest is history.

An opportunity Lee Rosen could not refuse

In June, Skyrora appointed Lee Rosen appointed the chief operations officer. He had previously spent a decade at Elon Musk’s SpaceX, climbing the ranks to become the VP of mission and launch operations. 

You will struggle to find anyone with a CV as impressive as Rosen’s in the space sector. During his decade at SpaceX, he led the construction of the Falcon Heavy and Falcon 9 rockets, as well as leading missions for government, commercial, and civilian orders.

Speaking about the switch, Rosen told UK Tech News the following:

“I just couldn’t refuse the opportunity to work at a startup that has some great ambitions, great technology, and amazing people.”

Focused on getting to orbit

Skyrora set up shop in 2017 in Edinburgh. The start-up designs and manufactures rockets for the purpose of flying small satellites into orbit. To date, a series of test launches have been carried out for a number of its rocket classes, but it has not reached orbit yet. The company has set its own deadline of 2023 for this to happen. 

Rosen spoke about the importance of achieving this objective:

“You don’t even get a seat at the table in this business until you have been to orbit.

“There are a lot of launch companies out there with great aspirations, but until you do the deal and hit 17,500 miles an hour, you don’t really get to play.”

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