MTC and Satellite Applications Catapult to exploit opportunities in space

Stuart Martin, CEO of the Satellite Applications Catapult and Dr Clive Hickman OBE, CEO of the Manufacturing Technology Centre.
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The High Value Manufacturing Catapult‘s Manufacturing Technology Centre (MTC) and the Satellite Applications Catapult (SAC) are to join forces to exploit the opportunities presented by the rapid growth in the global and UK space sectors.

The Coventry-based MTC and the SAC, headquartered on the Harwell Campus in Oxfordshire, will work together to develop the next generation of space technology, underpinned by advanced manufacturing technologies both on earth and in space.

The global space industry is booming and forecast to be worth almost a trillion pounds by 2030. The link-up between these two organisations aims to help UK businesses take advantage of that growth.

The two organisations will work collaboratively on exploring innovative technologies, advanced manufacturing processes, including in-space assembly, and supply chain readiness, leveraging the specialist expertise and extensive capabilities of both centres.

The partnership will also organise the two-day “Made for Space – New Frontiers” industry and supply chain conference being held at the MTC in July. This will feature leading international experts who will explain the opportunities in the space sector for UK manufacturers.

MTC chief executive Dr Clive Hickman said, “Advanced manufacturing technologies and processes are critical enablers for new spacecraft, complex space operations and enhanced space systems.

“This collaboration marks a step forward in recognising the massive growth in the space sector. We will work together to drive collaborative projects which can create greater growth and benefits for UK business,” he added.

Stuart Martin, chief executive of the Satellite Applications Catapult said, “Collaboration drives innovation in our sector, and together with the MTC, we will ensure that all space companies can access the expertise and facilities they need to grow and succeed in this dynamic industry, which is a major driver of economic growth for the UK.”

Chief executive of the High Value Manufacturing Catapult, Katherine Bennett CBE said the UK had the potential to become one of the most innovative and attractive space economies in the world.

She said, “This is an area of huge potential for the UK and the fact that we have some of the world’s greatest innovators and inventors working in the country’s manufacturing industry and HVM Catapult centres such as the MTC means we are well-placed to become global leaders.

“I look forward to seeing the industry coming together in areas such as satellite manufacture and communications, satellite broadband, in-orbit manufacture and servicing, and space debris removal to realise our potential.”

The MTC was founded by the University of Birmingham, Loughborough University, the University of Nottingham and TWI Ltd. The MTC’s industrial members include some of the UK’s major global manufacturers. The MTC is part of the High Value Manufacturing Catapult, supported by Innovate UK.

It aims to provide a competitive environment to bridge the gap between university-based research and the development of innovative manufacturing solutions, in line with the Government’s manufacturing strategy.

The Satellite Applications Catapult is an independent innovation and technology company, created by Innovate UK to drive economic growth through the exploitation of space. We work with businesses and organisations of all sizes to realise their potential from space infrastructure and its applications. Based in Harwell, Oxfordshire, the Catapult was established in May 2013 as one of a network of centres to accelerate the take-up of emerging technologies and drive economic impact for the UK.