SSC Invests to Finalize Spaceport Esrange – First Satellite to be Launched in 2022

MAXUS 9 launched at Esrange Space Center. (Credit: SSC)

SOLNA, Sweden (SSC PR) — Swedish Space Corporation (SSC) and the Nordic Investment Bank (NIB) have signed a EUR 12 million [US $13.9 million] loan agreement for the finalization of a new spaceport at Esrange Space Center in Kiruna, northern Sweden. The 12-year maturity loan will finance the investments to unlock the use of reusable rockets and the ability to launch small satellites into orbit as early as 2022, making Esrange the first major orbital launch site in the EU.

The 12 MEUR [US $13.9 million] loan is part of an extensive modernization of Esrange that has been ongoing since 2015 – a total investment of around 50 MEUR [$57.85 million]. The loan will finance the completion of the construction of a new spaceport capability, aiming at a first satellite launch in 2022.

“This important milestone means that Sweden will become a launching state, offering the most modern ground technology possible to European and international satellite owners. This will be of great importance for future research, technology development and expanded international collaboration – all to support a sustainable development of life on Earth”, says Stefan Gardefjord, CEO of SSC.

“We are happy to contribute to our member country’s efforts to become a launching state. By expanding service offerings in the growing satellite sector, the project not only increases Sweden’s competitiveness, but also provides new capabilities for the whole European aerospace industry”, says André Küüsvek, NIB President and CEO.

The project entails construction work for the new launch site, including integration halls for rockets and satellites, expansion of planned fuel plants, launch pads and surrounding technical ground systems as well as development of technical support systems in Esrange’s operational communication center.

“With more than 50 years of experience from launching rockets and balloons, Esrange Space Center is already one of the most active and versatile launch sites in the world. And with the new spaceport capability it will most likely become the first launch site on European mainland to provide a platform for space companies to develop their next generation rocket technologies and launch their satellites”, says Philip Påhlsson, Project Manager New Esrange at SSC.