Canada plans its first spaceport

August 19, 2006

Canada is reportedly planning to build its first spaceport, which will launch supplies to the International Space Station and even send tourists into space.

The spaceport is slated to be built in Sandy Mines on Cape Breton, in the eastern province of Nova Scotia, the New Scientist reported. The U.S.-Canadian private space firm PlanetSpace, which is constructing the rocket launch facility, is estimating it will cost about $200 million to build the spaceport.

Rockets launched from the spaceport will pass over the Atlantic Ocean on their way into space, New Scientist said.

PlanetSpace, in addition to sending supplies to the International Space Station, plans to develop a space tourism business, sending passengers into 15-minute suborbital flights. The firm plans to start construction within a year and launch its first suborbital flight by 2009.

PlanetSpace Chief Executive Officer Geoff Sheerin says the company has chosen to use ethyl alcohol fuel for its rockets because of environmental reasons.

The spaceport is predicted to bring as many as 4,000 jobs to the region.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

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