This page provides links to hot topics associated with Space Group activities, including government initiatives, major space milestones and other strategically important news.

Space in 2015

For details of space highlights expected during 2015, please click here.

UK Spaceport

On 15th July the UK Government paved the way for a its own spaceport and announced a shortlist of locations under consideration (see here). The ambition is to have the spaceport operational by 2018 and is a key part of the Innovation and Growth Strategy (see below) to capture a 10% market share of a forecasted £400bn global space business by 2030.

There is currently a burgeoning spaceport market place across the globe and Space Group Vice-Chairman Geoff Busswell has collaborated with NewSpace Global to produce an article called "What Makes a Spaceport Business Take Off?" (available here). NewSpace Global is an information provider that tracks the NewSpace industry. Its products include the Observer private company database, Thruster monthly market tracking report, NewSpace Watch real-time news source, and the NSG indices tracking over 700 companies in NewSpace. Subscription to NewSpace Global is available at The RAeS Space Group would like to thank NewSpace Global for allowing this article to be shared on these pages, which would normally only be available to their subscribers.

2014 Presidents Conference

The President’s Conference, which was inaugurated last year, aims to be the premier conference in its class for the international aerospace community. Each year the incoming President will choose the theme for the Conference. For 2014, the President Bill Tyack has chosen to focus on Space. The Conference, which the UK Space Agency is kindly supporting,  has been organised by the RAeS Space Group and will showcase the work being undertaken in the UK and around the world to roll back the frontiers of space exploration and to increase the exploitation of space.  For more details (including access to the programme) please click here.

Gravity - The Movie

The new movie starring George Clooney and Sandra Bullock released in the UK on 8th November 2013. The movie highlights the problem of space debris, a subject which was debated by world experts at a conference entitled: "Space Traffic Control - Is the Space Debris Problem Solvable?" in June at the RAeS.

The RAeS has also issued a statement highlighting the issue.

Innovation and Growth Strategy

In November 2013 the UK space industry proposed an updated action plan to deliver new jobs and growth to the sector. The action plan proposes measures designed to enable the UK to develop an even more supportive business environment. A response by government is expected in March 2014.  

In the February issue of the RAeS AEROSPACE magazine Geoff Busswell provided an overview of this Action Plan, including a reaction from Virgin Galactic CEO George Whitesides to the news that the UK has set out an ambition to have a spaceport by 2018. A pdf of this article is available here.

UK Space Conference

Every two years the UK holds a space conference attracting more than 500 delegates to hear the country’s leading space personalities.  The event is accompanied by an extensive exhibition and is the venue for the Sir Arthur Clarke Awards ceremony.  The 2013 conference took place in Glasgow from 15 to 17 July.  The next conference will be in October 2015 at a venue to be defined. 

Britain's Space Industry

The scale and nature of Britain’s space industry is outlined in an October 2012 report sponsored by the UK Space Agency – accessible here

UK Space Agency

The UKSA is responsible for ensuring that the UK retains and develops its space-based systems, technologies, science and applications. Please see their latest activities by clicking here.