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Britain’s First Spaceport Delayed, All Details Here<

The “Start me up” rocket launch from Virgin Orbit, which was scheduled to be the first satellite launch from the UK, has been postponed.

On November 16, Britain granted Spaceport Cornwall its first spaceport permit, paving the way for the nation’s initial satellite launch. According to BBC, Richard Branson’s Virgin Orbit had originally planned to launch satellites from the spaceport on Wednesday, December 14, but that plan has been postponed because of regulatory issues.

Britain’s First Spaceport Delayed

‘Start Me Up’ Mission

In honour of the English rock band The Rolling Stones’ popular song of the same name, Virgin Orbit has given the first launch the nickname “Start Me Up.” The mission will mark a number of firsts for Virgin Orbit, including the first international launch from Western Europe, the first orbital launch from the UK, and the first commercial launch from the region.

According to Reuters, Virgin Orbit intends to carry out its maiden launch using a modified Boeing 747 aircraft that has a rocket fitted beneath each wing. Small satellites will be launched into orbit by a rocket in a horizontal launch, which takes place while an aeroplane is in the air.

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Reasons For The Postponement

With licences still pending for both the launch itself and the satellites in the payload, additional technical work required to establish system health and readiness, and a very small window of only two days available for launch, Virgin Orbit CEO Dan Hart said in a statement to the BBC that they have decided it is prudent to retarget launch for the upcoming weeks to give themselves and their stakeholders time to prepare for full mission success.

The licencing and regulatory procedures, according to the UK’s Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), are not impeding the launch. Tim Johnson, director of the CAA’s space regulation division, stated in a statement that the UK space regulation procedure does not prevent a UK space launch. In their announcement this morning, Virgin Orbit noted that a few technical difficulties must be fixed before launch. These have nothing to do with when the Civil Aviation Authority will issue a licence because Virgin Orbit is already able to do its testing prior to launch thanks to the Cornwall spaceport’s licence, said CAA.

The UK Space Agency said in a statement that the Cornwall spaceport demonstrated that it complies with “the statutory requirements on safety, security, environment and other aspects to operate a UK spaceport” when the licence was awarded to it on November 16.

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Which is the first satellite launch from UK?

The “Start me up” rocket launch from Virgin Orbit, which was scheduled to be the first satellite launch from the UK, has been postponed.

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