Virgin Orbit and Wagner Corp to offer new way to launch

Rocket launch systems developer Virgin Orbit has teamed up with Wagner Corporation, owner of the Toowoomba Wellcamp Airport, to offer an alternative space launch system to Australia’s satellite manufacturers.

The companies have signed a MoU aiming to offer launch services from Virgin Orbit’s LauncherOne system (pictured).

The are exploring the potential for using Toowoomba Wellcamp Airport as a national spaceport, with a demonstration orbital launch possible as early as 2024.

Virgin Orbit CEO Dan Hart said: “At Virgin Orbit we look to a day when satellites fly to space from Australia.”

This would require LauncherOne’s mobile ground support equipment and infrastructure to be built at the privately owned airport.

The companies said the launch system, which utilises aircraft to take rockets into high altitude, would stimulate economic growth, catalyse the small satellite sector, and provide defence with a flexible national launch capability.

Stage 1 of Wellcamp’s Aerospace and Defence Precinct and Campus is due for completion by the end of 2024.

Picture: Virgin Orbit

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