Image Source: kristian fagerström
Chloe Shakesby

UK Space Agency grants £74k to Leeds University for development of climate change tech

The UK Space Agency has today announced that it has awarded more than £74k to develop space technology that will monitor climate change.

The funding has been granted to researchers at Leeds University, who will develop a technology to study stellar gases to understand how the planet’s climate is changing.

Some gases in our atmosphere and the clouds between stars are only visible in the terahertz (far-infrared) part of the spectrum, and the grant will allow scientists to develop new ways to study these gases.

Amanda Solloway, science minister, commented:“This investment will help UK space businesses fast-track innovative technologies with real scientific and commercial potential, supporting our aim for the UK to secure 10 percent of the global space market by 2030.

“From observing climate change from space to protecting our satellites from hazardous space debris, these technologies could expand our reach in space and improve life here on Earth.”

Dr Alexander Valavanis, from the School of Electronic and Electrical Engineering at the University of Leeds, said: “This Pathfinder project brings together UK expertise in liquid crystals, 3D printing and terahertz technology for this first time.

“Together, we will develop the advanced terahertz components that scientists urgently need for studying our changing climate and the origins of stars and planets.”

Charles McCausland, head of major projects and technology development, UK Space Agency, said: “The UK Space Agency has a strong track record of backing early-stage technologies with future potential, and these five projects promise to pave the way for further space innovation.

“As the UK extends its ambitions for the space sector, early support of this kind could prove decisive in helping us get ahead in an increasingly competitive global environment.”

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