A new programme has launched in Leicester to support startups working in the area of Earth Observation.

The Space Commercialisation Engine project aims to help entrepreneurs quickly test the commercial viability of their idea.

“With access to a dedicated team in EO technology, academia and business, the service will take each bespoke concept through a robust product development programme to accelerate its progress towards commercialisation”, says Satellite Applications Catapult- the organisation running the scheme in collaboration with the University of Leicester.

Applicants to the programme can be from any sector (including non-space) interested in introducing innovative Earth Observation data-based services to their current customer base.

The Space Commercialisation Engine launch includes a competition closing on Friday 17 September 2021 for entrepreneurs and companies wishing to express an interest in utilising Earth observation technology.

Application forms can be found on the website.

Stuart Martin, CEO, Satellite Applications Catapult said:

We are truly delighted by the announcement today of the opening of the Space Commercialisation Engine at our offices at Space Park Leicester. For the Catapult, it is the realisation of a unique business service offering to assist in the fast-tracking of UK ideas in satellite technology towards commercialisation. The Space Commercialisation Engine is also aligned to Leicester’s regional ambition to become a UK space hub and we are thrilled to be playing our part in making this a reality. The Space Commercialisation Engine is also an example of how the UK space industry is metamorphosing from an institutional domain into a commercial sector in which all UK business given the opportunity can flourish.”

Dan Wicks, Head of Geospatial Innovation, Satellite Applications Catapult said:

We are immensely proud to have delivered this service, a first for the UK. It is ultimately designed to increase UK business opportunities, by providing services that test the commercial validity of EO concepts submitted by entrepreneurs and SME’s, all the way through to large corporates. This unique resource also further increases UK business access to the space sector and establishes a landing point for inward investment for local and international businesses in a thriving EO community.”

For more information about the Space Commercialisation Engine and the Open Call, visit sa.catapult.org.uk/space-commercialisation-engine or, email sce@sa.catapult.org.uk.