Llanbedr Spaceport?

I see that Sky News are reporting that Llanbedr in Gwynedd is one of the shortlist of proposed sites for a spaceport for commercial spaceflights. Other possible sites include Cornwall, Newquay and several in Scotland.


I flew in there a few weeks ago. It’s got a runway I could very nearly have landed crosswise across in the microlight - its en-or-mous!

Great bunch of guys getting it back un and running on the light aviation side of things. Good planning in place for how they’ll coexist with the R&D side.

Wales does really very well out of aerospace. Between the BA maintenance base at Cardiff, GE in Nantgarw, Airbus, Marshalls and Raytheon up in Hawarden, R&D at Aberporth, Qinetiq at Pendine, Valley.

There’s a lot and lot of engineering expertise been built up in recent years, both civil and military - I can see why Llanbedr would be an attractive proposition.

Good news in my book to have a skilled trade as a growth sector. Lots of those big engineering firms are getting the workforce locally and have big apprenticeship schemes. in a sector where apprenticeships still mean something.

Newquay is a similar sized ex-RAF place but doesn’t have the local expertise to as great an extent as Wales I don’t think - and it’s already tried and find itself struggling as a regional commuter/tourist airport.

I’d love to see Llanbedr get it (and not just so I can write “spaceport” in the “airfields visited” column of my logbook :wink:

Llanbedr are recruiting (Yn Gymraeg) for office staff for the flying club at the moment actually!

Just out of interest, what’s the carbon footprint of a jaunt into (not really) space by someone with too much money?

At first glance, I thought this was Llanbedr Pont Steffan but then I realised that this was "spaced out " enough already :slight_smile:

<declaration of interest “I think it’s cool and will defend it”> :wink:

Just out of interest, what’s the carbon footprint of a jaunt into (not really) space by someone with too much money?

2 tons per passenger per trip apparently. (For Richard Branson’s gaff anyway) About the same as a return 747 trip London-New York. For contrast your average car per month is about 0.5tons. There’s 35 million cars on the road in the UK so about a third of a seconds worth of UK traffic.

35000000 cars
0.5 tons of carbon per month per car
17500000 tons of carbon per month from traffic
583333.3333 tons per day
24305.55556 per hour
405.0925926 per minute
6.75154321 per second
0.296228571 seconds to generate 2 tons

That’s been one of the R&D points to try and keep that low - that’s why the WhiteKnight airlaunch thing looks like an overgrown sailplane, big long skinny low drag.

Fuel is expensive - the less of it burned the wider the profit margin - in this case what’s good for the environment also happens to be good for business. Aerospace industries tend to be acutely concerned with lowering fuel consumption for that reason.

As a matter of interest Leia, have you and your aircraft achieved escape velocity yet? :slight_smile:

We have from Llanbedr… From Earth’s gravity… not so much… :wink:

Whatever happened to the principle of building space ports close to the equator (i.e. Cornwall) in order to gain extra speed due to the earth’s rotation, does that no longer apply?

i’m tempted to wonder what difference timing launch to coincide with the moon being overhead due to the reduction in gravity would make to the amount of energy needed.
cheers J.P.