Theresa May has announced funding will be made available to explore a project that will rival the European Union’s Galileo satellite navigation project.
It is reported that the Prime Minister has ordered officials to find £100 million in preliminary funding towards the project.
The Prime Minister’s decision comes after the EU alleged that the UK’s continuous involvement in the project could jeopardise European security, despite the UK contributing to the Galileo project throughout its conception.
The Galileo project is a satellite navigation system funded by the European Union to rival the United States’ GPS system, which is used for both military and consumer navigation devices.
The UK has already spent a reported £1.2 billion on the project, but the EU have alleged that if the UK continues to make security parts for the project, it could jeopardise European security.
Galileo is set to launch in 2020 and it is unlikely that a post-Brexit United Kingdom will be allowed to access the system when it is launched.
Graham Turnock, Chief Executive of the UK Space Agency has expressed disappointment at the EU’s decision to exclude Britain from the ongoing project.
The latest announcement from Downing Street comes a month after the UK announced plans for the UK’s first spaceport.
The £100 million funding is expected to finance ‘mapping out how a sovereign satellite system works’, according to Whitehall sources.
It is unclear how much a rival project would eventually cost if the UK decides to launch their own satellite navigation system.