The Queen and the Princess Royal have paid a visit to the Glasgow facility of Spire Global, a leading provider of space-based data, analytics and space services.

The visit to the satellite design, build, tests and operation facility was part of a series of engagements carried out by The Royal Family across Scotland this week.

Whilst touring the facility, The Queen and The Princess Royal were shown the firm’s proprietary technology and demonstrations of its data analytics platform. They were met by Joel Spark, co-founder and Vice President of Engineering, Space Services at Spire, and Dr Hina Khan, Senior Project Manager.

The Queen and The Princess were presented with an overview of the technology and shown how the data harnessed from the current constellation is leveraged to solve real world problems facing governments, businesses and humanity.

“Critical time for the planet”

Joel Spark, VP Engineering, Space Services at Spire, said: “It was an honour to welcome Her Majesty and Her Royal Highness, where we were able to demonstrate the benefits of our technology and how these cutting-edge capabilities are used to better inform our understanding of the world. At a critical time for our planet, continuous technological advancements are needed to tackle the impending threats posed by climate change. The space industry in Scotland, and across the wider UK, has ambitious targets for growth over the coming decade. At Spire Global, we are determined to play our part in realising those ambitions.”

Spire designs and manufactures all its satellites in-house at its Glasgow facility in Skypark, where it has been present since 2015. Since moving to the facility, Spire has launched more than 110 satellites. The company has announced plans to swap the existing 11,000 sq ft site for a 29,500 sq ft space, also located at Skypark, later this year.

“Scotland pivotal to UK’s space ambitions”

UK Space Agency Chief Executive Dr Graham Turnock said: “From space-based earth observation and data analysis to world-class satellite design and manufacture, Scotland is pivotal to the UK’s ambitions in space. Thanks to its science and engineering strengths and geographical position, Scotland is at the heart of our plans to launch satellites into orbit from home soil in 2022, and we’re proud that the Scottish space sector is growing fast and creating the high-skilled jobs that will power economic growth. I’m delighted that The Queen and The Princess Royal have chosen to visit space businesses today, and I hope Her Majesty and Her Royal Highness will be as thrilled as I am about this extraordinary success story.”

The Scottish Government has publicly backed the goal of growing Scotland’s space sector to £4bn by 2030, and the UK Government has set a target to grow the UK’s share of the global space market to 10 per cent over the same timeframe. According to Scottish Development International, Glasgow manufactures more satellites than anywhere in the world outside of the United States.

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