Reaction Engines Secures New UK Government Funding For Access To Space Program



The £ 3.9million grant from the UK Space Agency will support the development of breakthrough SABER jet engine technology, enabling low-carbon, breathing space access propulsion technology to be applied more widely in the space sector and beyond.

Science Minister Amanda Solloway and Transport Minister Rachel Maclean visited Reaction Engines today at its location in Culham, Oxfordshire, to discuss how the funding will help the UK stay on track advance in sustainable space exploration.

They also discussed how the technology Reaction Engines is developing for SABER can meet the challenge of driving Net-Zero in the transportation industry.

Science Minister Amanda Solloway said:

Backed by the government, UK companies are leading the way in developing space technologies that can cut costs, improve sustainability and make space more accessible as we pursue our ambitious plans to grow the sector.

It was fantastic to see this technology firsthand at Reaction Engines, a company leading efforts to ensure the benefits of low-carbon innovation are applied across the industry, while also helping the United Kingdom to become the world leader in space exploration.

Science Minister Amanda Solloway at Reaction Engines. Credit: Reaction Engines.

This investment builds on previous government support for Reaction Engines’ breakthrough SABER technology, which promises exciting new developments both in space with potential for other areas of technology, including sustainable aviation fuels. , unlocking high-speed atmospheric flight and extending the battery life of electric vehicles through innovative thermal management technology.

Transport Minister Rachel Maclean said:

This funding not only serves the development of cutting-edge low-carbon technologies in space, but it will also stimulate work to decarbonize our broader transportation landscape, from aviation to electric vehicles.

We will continue to invest in and support companies like Reaction Engines as we move towards a greener and cleaner future, including as we embark on sustainable space exploration.

Mark Thomas, Managing Director of Reaction Engines, said:

The innovative and disruptive nature of SABER technology opens up new avenues of access to space, fostering the growth and sustenance of the future space economy. This renewed British commitment to this long-term vision is extremely important to the British jet engines and space industry. The “space technology” we are developing is highly versatile and transformative, enabling applications here on earth with a strong environmental focus.

Science Minister Amanda Solloway with the Jet Engine Team. Credit: Reaction Engines.

This new grant includes £ 5.3million of activities to be carried out over the next year and is partly funded by the UK Space Agency (£ 3.9million) and Reaction Engines. It follows the UK Space Agency’s £ 50million funding for jet engines since 2015.

The latest funding will secure a short-term technology demonstration in hydrogen combustion, thermal management and engine control technologies, all critical to the air breathing core of future SABER systems.

It will also include strategic elements to explore the competitiveness of future SABER launch systems, while identifying key collaborative scenarios associated with vehicle and customer-centric routes to market.

Earlier today, ministers visited the Satellite Applications Catapult at Harwell Space Cluster in Oxfordshire, where they met Stuart Martin, CEO and Lucy Edge, COO and enjoyed a tour of the Disruptive Innovation for Space Center (DISC) satellite applications catapult, ahead of a discussion on the future of space and satellite applications in the UK.



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