Promising Signs for the Space Industry as the UK Welcomes Charles III29th Sep 2022
As the world mourns the death of Queen Elizabeth II, the UK is also ushering in a new chapter in its history with the immediate succession of King Charles III as the head of the country.
Charles has always been an active member of the Royal family, with particular focus on charitable and social causes, having been a member of over 400 organisations during his lifetime. And whereas the Monarchy is usually very tight-lipped when it comes to speaking about personal interests, Charles has remained a controversial figurehead, due to his willingness to speak up about subjects close to his heart.
So is this a new era for the UK and rest of the world when considering social and economic change? And in terms of space exploration, could we be looking at more focus on research and development, as Charles has always shown a keen interest in this field?
A Promising Start to the Year for Space Missions
Just this year, the Prince of Wales, as he was titled at the time, visited the Harwell Innovation Centre in Oxfordshire to discuss the ELSA-d space mission, which aims to clear space debris and tackle ‘space sustainability’. Both of these matters tie in with the newly-appointed King’s passion for conservation, and it’s an exciting prospect to think that the King of England will champion space-related activities in the new future.
Charles: the Sustainability King?
So what could Charles achieve in the coming year? Firstly, as we discussed previously, the EU has delayed the UK’s access to many space research programs and funding, which saw Prime Minister Liz Truss launch formal consultations. Could the scornful gaze of the King hurry these proceedings along?
Secondly, with conservation-focused space projects, such as the ELSA-d mission championed by Japanese company Astroscale, there’s a strong onus on sustainability in the long-term for humans and our relationship with space exploration. Could this be the latest in Charles’ long line of conservation-led projects?
Of course, King Charles III has a wealth of duties and responsibilities to tend to in his new role, especially over the immediate few weeks. But the UK’s change in rule could very well signal a new age of space exploration, sustainability, research and funding as we head into 2023. And at the helm of this exciting new development could very well sit King Charles III.