Can the Irish border take advantage of the increasingly privatised space industry to become an internationally recognisable satellite service by allowing for a seamless process from development to launch?
My thesis project, based upon the Irish border, takes in to consideration the possibility of maximising the UK and Ireland space economies to present a unique and global opportunity. The proposal takes in to consideration the parameters and advantages for the development, manufacture and launch of small to medium satellites to Lower Earth Orbit by harnessing the power of private space companies. By allowing for the situation of the launch and industrial zones near the town of Londonderry, it allows for the city to also find gain in the expansion of a tourism industry and educational facilities within the zone.
Visitor experience opportunities are designed to be one of a kind within this zone, targeting the growth of the Londonderry tourism economy, as highlighted within the Derry and Strabane Local Development Plan. These experiences allow all visitors to have close encounters with the manufacturing processes of both launch vehicles and satellites. Additional engagement opportunities include launch viewing from within mission control, engagement with the three launch complexes and live-feed satellite planetariums to name a few.
The proposal is based upon a long term masterplan, with certain milestones, such as the maximisation of production and launch facilities, becoming a catalyst for the next stage to begin. These milestones also allow opportunities for Londonderry to receive funding from the new economy towards the development of local infrastructure and housing, ensuring that the economic zone grows with the city.