Originally named the Scottish Space Leadership Council (SSLC), Space Scotland was founded in late-2016 by a group of like-minded Scottish space industry professionals who recognised the huge potential for the sector to develop in Scotland. They saw two principal opportunities: firstly, the dawning of an embryonic, organic cluster without any co-operation or structured collaboration. Secondly, it was a cluster that, unlike others, focused on ‘NewSpace’ SMEs, which were rapidly emerging alongside an existing and impressive history of traditional space missions. The NewSpace element was initially driven by a surge of CubeSat activity in Glasgow by Clyde Space and Spire, the downstream sector largely located in the East; and a world-class academic backbone; all combining to form an ‘agile space’ concept.
More recently, the the Council has welcomed partners from the wider UK sector and organised industry events and consultations that are focused on supporting and enhancing the space proposition for the whole of the United Kingdom. We seek to provide a platform for industry, academia and government to work collaboratively, promote the sector and take a united approach to shared challenges.
Space Scotland has been supported on an administrative basis since inception by Scottish Enterprise and brings together various representatives from the sector to attempt to tackle common challenges, network and identify opportunities for sectoral growth.
In 2021, Space Scotland was formalised and a not-for-profit company, Scottish Space Group Ltd (company number SC698253), was set up to support the organisation (four appointed Directors; Zoe Kilpatrick, Daniel Smith, Gordon Venters and Andy Mount), with the Higgs Centre for Innovation at the Royal Observatory Edinburgh as its registered office.