The application phase for the seventh round of the INNOspace Masters competition has been launched. The 2022 edition comes with a new theme of sustainable and efficient innovations for space and earth and welcomes Mercedes-Benz as a new industrial partner.
Visionary teams, startups and individuals from industry, research and academic backgrounds have the chance to become part of the INNOspace Masters success story. The competition is on the lookout for outstanding transfer-based project ideas at different stages of maturity – from application-oriented fundamental research to market-ready solutions.
Welcoming both spin-in (into space from other industries) and spin-off (adding value to terrestrial industries through space applications) ideas, there are prizes up for grabs in five themed challenges. The winners of each challenge will receive tailored prizes worth up to €400k per winner – enabling them to implement their ideas and gain access to a network of internationally renowned experts.
The Challenge: Each partner of the INNOspace Masters presents their own challenge to the participants with individual areas of focus. While the German Space Agency at DLR is focusing on application-oriented fundamental research, the ESA Incubation Centres are looking for startups with innovative ideas and business models focused on the transfer of technology from and to space. The industry partners Airbus, OHB and Mercedes-Benz are focusing on more mature innovations, specifically aiming to identify novel ideas and market-ready solutions. You can find out more about the challenges and respective prizes here.
The partners of the competition select the top three winning ideas for their respective challenges. To crown the “INNOspace Master” – the overall winner of the competition – a joint partner jury selects the three most impressive ideas from the winners of the individual challenges. All winners are announced at the INNOspace Masters conference and awards ceremony on 5th July 2022 in Berlin. At the conference, the three winning teams of each challenge will also have the opportunity to pitch their idea in front of industry experts, investors and other members of the space ecosystem.
The entry deadline is February 4 2022 – Apply now!
The competition aims to foster transfer-based technological developments, innovative services and to boost startups – laying the foundations for future innovations by linking space with terrestrial industries. With more than 50% of the entries from non-space industries, the INNOspace Masters highlights the growing importance of space in various branches of industry.
Integrated into an international network, the competition tracks down new businesses ideas and trends each year. In the last six years, prizes have already been awarded to a total of 72 winners, who were selected from over 500 innovative business ideas from over 1220 participants from 26 countries. This not only promotes the transfer of technology between space and other industrial sectors but also strengthens the New Space Economy in Germany and Europe.
Dr. Franziska Zeitler, Head of the Innovation & New Markets department at the German Space Agency at DLR, said: “We are delighted that the INNOspace Masters has developed over the years to become a driving innovative force for the European New Space Economy. This year’s thematic orientation of the INNOspace Masters focused fully on sustainable and efficient innovations for space and earth. We are convinced that we can once again help many visionary researchers and companies to implement their creative solutions.”
The focus of the upcoming edition centres around sustainable and efficient innovations for space and our planet. While sustainability and efficiency aren’t necessarily the first terms that come to mind when thinking about space and satellites, satellite systems in the earth observation, navigation and communication sector have become crucial for our modern society and help us foster sustainable development back on Earth. Satellites hold incredible quantities of data that if lost or impacted in some way can massively impact emergency response services, security agents and other institutions on Earth in addition to a host of other ramifications. We therefore desperately need to keep innovating in this sector to ensure that our vital systems on earth run smoothly.
Achieving sustainability for our earth and space in this way can be looked at through different lenses. One such lens is that we need to set up special security measures to prevent harmful hacker attacks on satellites by malicious agents to protect our data. But it also means that new ways need to be found to protect the satellites themselves, as they are increasingly endangered by a growing flock of space debris in orbit. It could also entail looking for solutions to restore damaged or obsolete satellites, instead of losing them entirely – improving their longevity.
The INNOspace Masters 2022 is on a mission to help shape the next generation of space, and address those challenges that are impacting both our planet and space itself. In the 2022 edition, innovators will be awarded in themed challenges that reflect this, from sustainability to safe and efficient energy supply, digital sustainability, hydrogen technologies, resource-conserving approaches, Earth observation and environmental monitoring, to mobility, 5G connectivity, commercialisation of space and cost reduction.
Don’t hesitate to apply now and get your chance to participate in this prestigious event. The applications are open now until February 4 2022.