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Britain to ramp up space mission

20th Jun 17 10:37 am

Here’s what you need to know

Britain will get the infrastructure it needs to thrive through Brexit and beyond under plans set to be outlined by the Government. 
A series of Bills will create the legislative framework necessary to get on with job of delivering world class infrastructure and remove legal obstacles to innovation – supporting high-skilled, well-paid jobs right across the country.
Legislation to be set out later this week will see the Government outline the next steps on the HS2 railway, providing the legal powers needed to build and operate the next leg of the route that will link the Midlands to the North West.
HS2 will create vital capacity on the railways, freeing up commuter services on the existing network with the creation of the line, playing a role in rebalancing the economy as improved connections between our cities generate jobs, skills and economic growth and help us build an economy that works for all.
It will also help create prosperity around the country, creating tens of thousands of jobs all over the UK during its construction phase, as firms across Britain compete for contracts up and down the supply chain.
The Queen’s speech will also include plans support drivers of plug-in vehicles. There are already over 100,000 plug-in cars and vans registered on the UK’s roads.
As well as being cleaner they have much lower running costs to petrol and diesel engines.
The UK also plays a leading role in the development and manufacture of these vehicles, with ongoing government support through grants for research and development as well as to drive uptake.
But the Government is clear more needs to be done to remove some of the barriers that are preventing more drivers switching to electric.
As things stand, those wanting to use publicly-accessible charging points may need to register with several different companies that run them.
The planned legislation will include measures to ensure drivers need register only once to make full use of the existing infrastructure.
A third Bill will put Britain at the heart of new spaceflight technology, allowing UK companies to compete in an international market and generate highly-skilled jobs.
The UK space industry is worth £13.7bn to the economy and satellites support over 38,000 jobs. The global market for launching satellites is estimated to be £25 billion over the next 20 years.
They offer exciting opportunities to grow our space sector, create local jobs and inspire the next generation of British scientists and engineers.
The powers will allow the launch of satellites from the UK for the first time, horizontal flights to the edge of space for scientific experiments and the establishment and operation of spaceports in regions across the UK.
The legislation will ensure the UK can take advantage of these new markets, overcome dependence on foreign launch services and benefit from the development of new spaceports and supply chains.
The Bill will provide new powers to license a wide range of new spaceflight, including vertically-launched rockets, spaceplanes, satellite operation, spaceports and other technologies. 
It will take the UK into the commercial space age by enabling small satellite launch and spaceflight from UK spaceports.
And it will create new opportunities for the UK’s scientific community to carry out cutting-edge research in a micro gravity environment by British scientists easier access to this unique environment by enabling them to launch from UK soil.
Combined, these measures will play a part of the Modern Industrial Strategy, with the Government supporting and promoting industries of strategic value to our economy.
Transport Secretary Chris Grayling said:
“We are absolutely determined to give Britain the transport infrastructure it needs so that we can thrive and grow as we leave the European Union.
“The measures we outline this week will ensure our legal structures are ready for the high skill, highly paid jobs of the future, while backing the transport projects that will make journeys better for ordinary working people.
“It’s only by backing infrastructure through our Modern Industrial Strategy that we can spread prosperity and opportunity around the country.”

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