A modern space race needs to be built on sustainability

Thu, 23 Jun 2022 04:29:16 GMT
Space Daily

Manchester UK (SPX) Jun 23, 2022 Researchers have called for a more sustainable approach to the...

Researchers have called for a more sustainable approach to the UK's National Space Strategy in a new publication from The University of Manchester, On Space.

Based on leading research and expertise on innovative and emerging technologies, experts are calling for sustainability to be at the forefront of humanity's next phase of space exploration.

In On Space, experts ask policymakers to consider space debris, satellite orbits and the investment needed to roll out sustainable space technology on Earth.

Future innovations in space technology could be used to further reduce carbon emissions here on Earth.

AstroCrete, researched at The University of Manchester, is a material is made from bio-based materials and the local planetary soil to make sturdy bricks that can be used to build space habitats.

Dr Peter Roberts argues that one way to combat the problem of space debris is to coordinate International space policymakers to agree to prioritise the use of Very Low Earth Orbits for commercial operations to lessen humanity's impact on the space environment.

Professor Emma Bunce, President of the Royal Astronomical Society, said: "It is exciting to contemplate the future of the UK space sector, our use of space for the good of our planet, and its robotic and human exploration more widely. The 'space age' is still relatively young - just 60 years - but it is clear that our future and that of our planet will be reliant on space technology and the application of space-enabled data."

As well as sustainability, On Space advocates for the use of advanced materials, such as graphene, in UK space technology, support for research and development into emerging space technologies in the UK and prioritising international collaborations in UK and international space policy.

Entrepreneurs, fledgling firms and established space companies are to receive a boost with the launch of the European Centre for Space Economy and Commerce.

The ESA centre aims to create jobs and prosperity in Europe by fostering a fertile environment to promote the development of the space economy and boost the commercialisation of space in Europe.