Highland space hub demonstrates sky-high ambition
February 12 2020
Plans to build a £17.5m vertical launch spaceport in the Highlands have rocketed ahead with the submission of detailed plans for a launchpad and associated infrastructure on the A’Mhoine Peninsula, Sutherland.
Space Hub Sutherland is being led by Highlands & Islands Enterprise with Norr Architects, Arup and ERZ, who will transform 307 hectares of moorland into a launchpad complex capable of propelling small satellites into orbit, including a control centre, antenna park and rail track for transporting rockets to the launch pad.
A key consideration of the design was to minimise visual and habitat intrusion by adopting a living green roof for the control centre, which seamlessly blends into the ground with retractable 15m lighting columns and a 40m lightning mast.
Outlining their concept the architects wrote: “The concept is ‘a single set of sliding doors, set into the landscape, which reveals a high tech world beyond. The northern side of the building would face towards the launch pad and be formed of a fully glazed wall to allow personnel to view a launch.”
Access will be provided by a new road off the A838 designed to accommodate articulated HGV’s.