Once the world looked to Scotland for our manufacturing, ship building and locomotives, the great vehicles that drove the industrial revolution. Today, with our dynamic and growing space sector it’s our satellites. Across Scotland, our cities and regions are at the forefront of a new space economy. Quietly industrious, Glasgow produces more satellites than anywhere outside of California. In Edinburgh, NASA designed humanoid robots are being programmed for missions to Mars. In the north of Scotland plans are underway to construct the UK’s first Spaceport – a game changing project that will enable Scotland to build and launch satellites, delivering transformational growth.
In Astronomy Scotland has vast open spaces and dark skies. In the south Scotland has the Scottish Dark Sky observatory and the Galloway forest Dark Sky Park, the first of its kind in Europe. The University of St Andrews observatory holds the James Gregory Telescope, the largest in the UK, which has been involved in observing astronomical targets such as galaxies, galactic nuclei, minor planets, young stars and monitoring space debris.
In Scotland the space industry is thriving. More than 80 UK space industry firms have headquarters located in Scotland, and in satellite production and design we are a global leader. Scottish firms such as Clyde Space, Skyrora, Orbex, Alba Orbital and Spire are conducting ground breaking research and developing new technologies that change how we operate in space. As the final frontier comes ever closer, with commercial flights expected soon and small satellite technology growing and becoming available to new markets, Scotland is poised to once again lead the world in this key industry. Scotland is where Ideas Become Legend.
Hear from Malcolm Macdonald, Director of the Scottish Centre of Excellence in Satellite Applications (SoXSA).
Scotland is world-renowned for its innovation and academic excellence as well as its striking beauty and rich history. But did you know that we produce more satellites here than any other place in Europe?
Image: © ESA - Scotland from Space
Scotland has some of the world’s best dark sky national parks that provide the ideal environment to admire the night sky. These dark sky national parks also make ideal locations to image some of the Solar Systems more spectacular firework displays.
A Dark Sky Park is a place with exceptionally dark night skies, a place where people have committed to keeping those skies dark, by controlling light pollution. In November 2009, the International Dark-Sky Association designated Galloway Forest Park as only the fourth Dark Sky Park in the world and the first in the UK.
Image: Galloway Forest Dark Sky Park © Lewis Parry