Virgin Orbit finally receives launch license from British bureaucracy

We’re here to help you! The UK’s Civil Aviation Authority has finally issued a license to Virgin Orbit to launch nine satellites from a Cornwall airport.

The launch date however has not yet been set, because it appears licenses for the nine satellites still need to be issued, though according to the article at the link, approval appears “imminent.”

The press release from the UK Space Agency brags about the speed in which this license was issued:

The UK Civil Aviation Authority granted the licences within 15 months, well within the expected timescales for these types of licences, putting the UK’s regulatory framework on a competitive footing with other international space regulators.

Hogwash. If the licensing process for every commercial launch in the UK is going to take this long, rocket companies are going to quickly find other places to launch from.