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Progress Update from Sutherland Spaceport - May 2024

9th May 2024

Photograph of Progress Update from Sutherland Spaceport - May 2024

Progress at Sutherland Spaceport continues at pace and we're happy to share the latest developments that have taken place over the last few months, working alongside our Principal Contractor, Dynamic Concepts. Here's a quick overview our recent achievements, some behind the scenes photos and an update about what lies ahead.

Watercourse Crossing Bridge Installation

Following delivery of the watercourse crossing bridges to site in February, the Construction Team began work on the watercourse crossing bridge abutments in April, which were created with a little help from a helicopter.

We're delighted to announce that the successful installation of the first watercourse crossing bridge has now been completed. The bridges will serve as crucial infrastructure and facilitate seamless passage over water bodies, ensuring smooth operations at the Spaceport.

Floating Road Takes Shape

The floating road on the Spaceport site has also made huge progress over the last few weeks. This type of road is constructed on peat as it allows the hydrology of the peat bog to continue underneath it, ensuring there is no disturbance to the important ecological system. A geogrid is laid and stone is placed on top of it until the peat beneath it becomes compressed, at that point it becomes a hydraulic platform that supports the weight of the road and any traffic using it.

With over 600 metres of road already completed it won't be long until it is facilitating the movement of the launch vehicle and its payload to the launch pad. This innovative approach to road construction has allowed us to overcome logistical challenges whilst protecting the land that we are working on.

We recently launched the third chapter of our short film series, Protecting the Land which focuses on the benefits of the floating road and features some of the team members who are leading the environmental efforts in construction at Sutherland Spaceport.

Visit from Openreach

Recently we also welcomed members of the Openreach team to the site. Their collaboration with us as contractors for cable installation marks another step towards enhancing connectivity at the Spaceport. As communications experts they have great knowledge that we can benefit from and we look forward to working with them.

Next Steps Over the Coming Months

Looking ahead, the momentum at Sutherland Spaceport shows no sign of slowing down. In the coming months, our focus will be on the continued construction of the floating road, which will connect the Launch Services Integration Facility and the Launch Pad locations together. We are also gearing up to begin the construction of the Launch Pad area, getting ever closer to delivering our mission to launch satellites into orbit direct from Scotland!