On 12 May Virgin Orbit announced that it had been selected by Arqit Limited to launch its first two satellites. The contract covers two launches starting in 2023. Arqit Limited is a British, newspace company which has recently exited “stealth mode” and developed a quantum-encryption technology for secure data transfer – known as QuantumCloud.
Also discussed as part of the deal is the potential for future missions for the company from Spaceport Cornwall. Cornwall is one of the global locations Virgin Orbit is developing to host future LauncherOne missions. It hopes to begin operations at this site by 2022.