Virgin Orbit Secures UK License for Space Flights

UTC by Bhushan Akolkar · 2 min read
Virgin Orbit Secures UK License for Space Flights
Photo: Virgin Orbit / Facebook

As per the permission granted by the UK Civil Aviation Authority, Virgin Orbit can operate its flight from the Spaceport Cornwall in southwest England.

Earlier today, December 21, the United Kingdom issued its final license to Virgin Orbit to conduct its first satellite launch from the UK site. The Civil Aviation Authority also sanctioned the license for the same.

Early next year in 2023, Richard Branson’s Virgin Orbit Holdings Inc. will conduct the first-ever space mission from European soil. As per the permission granted by the UK Civil Aviation Authority, Virgin Orbit can operate its flight from Spaceport Cornwall in southwest England. However, this would need an official sign-off from Transport Secretary Mark Harper. Speaking on the development, Transport Minister Mark Harper said:

“Today we are one step closer to opening the UK’s galactic gateway, with Virgin Orbit receiving a historic first licence to allow the UK’s first ever spaceflight launch”.

The re-purposed Boeing Co. 747 from Virgin shall take off from the former Royal Air Force base near Newquay. It will carry a rocket under its wing which will later blast off at higher altitudes to deploy the satellite in the orbit.

The Civil Aviation Authority looks after the UK space regulation after the country split from the European Union. Last month in November, they also issued separate licenses to Spaceport Cornwall. The United Kingdom is now looking to establish a network of space hubs that will allow the undertaking of a variety of missions. this also includes the traditional vertical launches from two sites in Scotland.

Virgin Galactic Stock Price Tanks

The border equity market in the US and the rest of the world are facing major turbulence amid the ongoing macro conditions. The Fed rate hikes to combat inflation are putting further pressure on the stock markets.

The stock of Virgin Galactic (NYSE: SPCE) faces similar challenges. On Monday, the SPCE stock tanked by another 3.4% dropping all the way to $3.67. This was probably the fifth consecutive day of loss for the SPCE stock.

The stock price of Virgin Galactic Holdings has been on a free fall this year with the SPCE stock already down by more than 72% year-to-date. The recent set of developments is certainly positive for the company and might help the stock to recoup some of its losses.

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Bhushan Akolkar

Bhushan is a FinTech enthusiast and holds a good flair in understanding financial markets. His interest in economics and finance draw his attention towards the new emerging Blockchain Technology and Cryptocurrency markets. He is continuously in a learning process and keeps himself motivated by sharing his acquired knowledge. In free time he reads thriller fictions novels and sometimes explore his culinary skills.

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