Energy crisis has led UK to 'foothills of recession' says expert

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As the energy crisis continues to send shocks through the nation, with millions facing fuel poverty, a stunning new initiative could provide a crucial lifeline later down the line. The Space Energy Initiative (SEI) is an exciting new project that could see Britain set up the first power station in space by 2035. It will be made up of satellites with lightweight solar panels and a system of mirrors to concentrate sunlight onto the panels, generating around 3.4 GW of electricity on the satellite.

By the mid-2040s, the power generated from the space station could reach 30GW, accounting for up to 30 percent of the UK’s electricity demand.

It comes as the country scrambles to find alternatives to gas as the spiralling global price of the fuel continues to send bills in Britain skyrocketing.

While other countries are plotting similar initiatives, such as Japan and Canada, there is one aspect of the project that is putting the UK “ahead of the game”, according to Conservative MP Mark Garnier.

Mr Garnier, who is also the Chair of the advisory board of the SEI, told Express.co.uk: “Where we’re ahead of the game is that what we are proposing is something which is much more commercially orientated.

“China and Russia’s (space programmes) tend to be run by the Government.

“What we are proposing is basically commercial space. So, this is what someone like Elon Musk or Jeff Bezos and those sorts of people (have done).”

Mr Musk, the SpaceX CEO, has been hailed for changing the face of the US’ space industry.

Since its launch in 2002, the company now regularly launches and landing rockets carrying huge payloads for a wide range of customers in the space business, including NASA and the United States Space Force.

Mr Garnier is now hoping to follow Mr Musk’s example.

And the world’s richest man may even have a role to play in the project.

Mr Garnier said: “They (the satellites) are going to be in the magnitude of tens of launches in order to get these things into orbit, and you have got to get the assembly unit up there as well.

“This is where SpaceX comes in, with its really big launch capacity. You want big launches that could heavy payloads up into low-Earth orbit.

When asked if he thought Mr Musk would consider helping to launch the system, Mr Garnier responded: “Yes, definitely. It will use big rockets.”

Billionaire Mr Musk’s SpaceX is known for its huge rockets, with technologies such as the Falcon Heavy in its arsenal.

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And according to Sanjeev Gordhan, a general partner of US-based Venture Capital Fund Type One, the UK’s booming space sector is certainly something Mr Musk has taken an interest in.

The UK’s space sector is growing rapidly, valued at around £14.8billion a year. Sector income soared in nominal terms last year, from £16.4billion to £16.5billion, with exports counting for around a third 32 percent of this total, according to the UK Space Agency.

When asked by Express.co.uk whether Mr Musk and Mr Bezos would get involved, Mr Gordhan responded: “It is already on their radar.

“We know it is already on their radar because there are a couple of opportunities indirectly that we are putting out to those types of individuals.”

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