Britain considers manned space missions

February 15, 2008

The British government may be rethinking its decision not to pursue manned space missions.

A strategy document published this week calls for an international space facility to focus on climate change and robotic space exploration, The Times of London said Thursday.

Space Minister Ian Pearson said satellite communications and space technology provide strong business opportunities.

The document follows up on a report last year that recommended that Britain launch its first astronaut as early as 2012.

The newspaper said Britain gave up on idea of manned missions in 1986 after Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher pulled out of a European Space Agency effort. Britain is the only G8 country without a manned space program.

Copyright 2008 by United Press International

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