Queensland on space launch trajectory
Published Thursday, 20 May, 2021 at 08:10 AM
Deputy Premier and Minister for State Development, Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning
The Honourable Dr Steven Miles
Queensland could be home to a new space launch facility at Abbot Point near Mackay.
Deputy Premier and Minister for State Development Steven Miles said Queensland has plenty of home-grown advantages in the emerging space industry.
“Growing our space industry in Queensland will add billions to the economy and create thousands of local jobs. That’s why we are committed the development of launch infrastructure.
“Our easterly facing position, proximity to the equator, and our leading launch and propulsion companies make Queensland the perfect place to invest in space.” Mr Miles said.
“The technical and environmental investigation into the opportunity to launch space rockets from Abbot Point has found this particular site is suitable for small-scale launch vehicles.
“Gilmour Space Technologies has expressed an interest in the site.
“We are keen to work with the team at Gilmour and local stakeholders.
"A facility like this would launch Queensland’s economic recovery into orbit. "
Mr Miles said other potential launch sites Queensland would also be considered.
“We also want to position the state to have the potential to meet longer-term, broader industry requirements,” he said.
“Having multiple launch facilities would be a huge drawcard for Queensland, which would undoubtedly bring more global players and jobs to the state.
“Investing in priority industries like space is a part of our economic recovery plan."
Queensland’s Strategic Defence Advisor for Aerospace, Air Vice-Marshal Neil Hart (ret’d) said launch facilities are one of the foundational elements of developing a true sovereign space capability.
“There is considerable interest in leveraging the geographic advantage of an East coast launch from low latitudes,” Mr Hart said.
“Identifying a site along the Queensland coast with the potential to launch multiple and large payloads to a range of nationally significant orbits would be a significant contribution to Australia's growing space capabilities.”
Mr Miles said in addition to this ongoing work, the next actions of our strategy will be underway, including working with the space industry to support the development of a rocket engine test site and an Earth observation data analytics hub.
“These projects align with Queensland’s strengths, will boost our economic recovery and will help ensure the growth of our space industry is all systems go,” Mr Miles said.
Media contact: Katharine Wright – 0428 957 903