Launch of the NW Space Cluster

The aim of any kind of an organisational cluster is to bring companies together in an effort to make certain operations easier and more recognisable.

The space sector has tripled in size since 2000 and is generating an annual income of more than £16 billion, it’s also employing more than 47,000 people. Since the sector is growing so fast it’s important that the UK seizes the opportunity for this growth. The UK’s vision is to double its market share of the global space sector to 10% by 2030 and the North West is one of the fastest growing regions of the UK for space technology.

The North West  is already home to research institutions and private enterprises working in, or directly benefiting from, the space sector. There are also a number of organisations across the North West who already work in adjacent sectors such as defence manufacturing, machine learning, big data, software-as-a-service, advanced materials, telecoms, or electronics, and have the potential to leverage, pivot or wedge into the space sector.

The recently published document, Strategic Case for the North West Space Cluster, developed by the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) along with regional and national stakeholders highlights the potential for these sectors to engage more with the space industry as an opportunity for economic and societal development and growth.

The North West Space Cluster was launched on 26th of May at the Global Headquarters of the Square Kilometre Array Observatory and our director Rich Grant was there representing Milliamp as a part of the cluster! He said “It’s an exciting time to be an electronics design engineer. Products that are developed for space will push up the quality of technology development and will need to be designed in a way that they are highly robust. These developments will no doubt push boundaries. The cascade effect that will follow is that the general standard of electronics will be higher benefiting other industries and ultimately consumers.”

Closer to home, Nicola Mortimer was invited to talk on the panel about the electronics industry and the opportunities regarding space in Lancashire at the North West Space Cluster Event at Fraser House. Lancashire LEP hosted ‘’How Lancastrians Can Break Into Space’ – an exciting aspiration event starting the Space conversation in Lancashire. This informal interactive event followed on from the recent launch of the North West Space Cluster at Jodrell Bank. This event brought together representatives from government, industry, academia and student groups and provided context about what is going on in the Space world, supported by a diverse set of speakers.

Space sector holds huge opportunities for Lancashire’s businesses and residents alike. We are looking forward to the expansion of the North West Space Cluster and hope we get to work on some interesting projects as a result!

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