Plans to build a 'Spaceport' in Cornwall have taken a step forward with a proposed £12m funding from Cornwall Council being approved by the the council's cabinet.
The proposal, which passed by a 6-4 margin, will now be subject to approval by the full council in November.
The cash is a key part of getting the Virgin Orbit satellite launch system off the ground at Newquay Airport.
It is the biggest part of a package including £7.85m from the UK Space Agency and £2.5m from Virgin Orbit.
The plan is to create create a horizontal launch site, Spaceport Cornwall, at Newquay to launch satellites into orbit.
The £12m means the Virgin Orbit jet, a modified Boeing 747 called Cosmic Girl, is closer to operating out of Newquay in 2021.
Claire Barcham, commercial space director at the UK Space Agency, told the cabinet meeting in a letter that Spaceport Cornwall would "help Cornwall to take a leading role in the UK's emerging spaceflight sector".
She said it was an "extremely exciting time for the South West, which is home to a variety of unique space sector facilities, expertise and assets, including Cornwall Airport Newquay, which have the potential to play a significant role in shaping our future economy".
Virgin Orbit envisages jets carrying satellite launchers slung underneath the fuselage.
The launchers are released and then accelerate and release the satellite into space.
The Spaceport could also be used in the future to send fee-paying passengers on sub-orbital flights.