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Space skills centre to land in North East

Northumbria University has secured £50M in funding to create a world-leading space skills, research and technology centre in Newcastle.

The funding from the UK Space Agency and global aerospace giant, Lockheed Martin, have been match-funded by the University itself, to create the North East Space Skills and Technology Centre.

The centre, which will be known as NESST, will be a “game-changer” for the UK space economy. It is expected to directly support the creation of over 350 jobs and inject over £260M million into the local economy over the next 30 years.

Located in the heart of Northumbria University’s Newcastle city campus, NESST will be a new national space asset that brings together industry and academia to collaborate on internationally significant space research and technological developments.

Andrew Griffith MP, Minister of State at the Department for Science, Innovation and Technology, said: “Making Britain a space superpower means backing brilliant ideas up and down the land and harnessing the full potential of talent in our growing sector – from Dundee to Newcastle, Cornwall to Snowdonia. By investing with the private sector in research and facilities across the UK, we are ensuring they become home to global industries that support the growth of our £17.5 billion space sector, create hundreds of new jobs and build dynamic businesses across the UK.”

Dr Paul Bate, Chief Executive of the UK Space Agency, said: “Our space sector has been concentrated in London and the South East, but in recent years we’ve seen the emergence of vibrant clusters across the whole of the country and significant investments from world-leading companies such as Lockheed Martin.

“This is a fantastic opportunity for Northumbria University to further propel the UK to the forefront of world-class research and innovation with NESST, helping us lead the way in optical satellite communications, space weather and energy research, education and training.”

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