Turn innovative satnav ideas into business

18 May 2018

Come up with a great new proposal for the use of satellite navigation in everyday life. Turn it into one of the world’s biggest satnav contests – the European Satellite Navigation Competition – and you may be on the way to start your own company.

You are also in for winning one of the attractive prizes and following the competition you could join one of the ESA Business Incubation Centres to turn your idea into a start-up.

Submit your proposal until 31 July

Instigator of ESNC Thorsten Rudolph with Carlo des DoridesAccess the image

The international and Netherlands` kick-off of the fifteenth European Satellite Navigation Competition (ESNC), also known as the “Galileo Masters”, took place this week in Noordwijk, the Netherlands, at the official opening of the Galileo Reference Centre.

“The European Satellite Navigation Competition has always been ahead of its time,” said Executive Director of the European GNSS Agency (GSA) Carlo des Dorides about the competition.

“I am especially excited to see GNSS-based ideas boosting innovation in the field of Smart Cities, the Internet of Things (IoT), Mobile Health (mHealth), and many other applications. GSA has been a partner of the competition since its early days, and we are looking forward to more successful stories.”

Galileo is a launchpad for new applications

Galileo FOC satellitesAccess the image

With over 11.500 participants since its beginning in 2004, ESNC is an important driver for new applications and services based on the higher location accuracy provided by Europe's Galileo navigation system.

Navigation information has become an essential part of our daily lives, and Galileo, the European global satellite navigation system with its higher precision services, is a launch pad for new applications.

ESA space solutions prize

ESA with its Technology Transfer and Business Incubation Programme has been partners since the early years of the competition and is offering the special ESA space solution Prize aimed at promising satnav applications that can be quickly developed into a profitable business.

“As the world's largest space-related ideas competition, the ESNC is an important source for generating new potential business concepts which we at our ESA Business Incubation Centres can help the entrepreneurs to turn into successful companies,” said Frank M. Salzgeber, Head of ESA Technology Transfer and Business Incubation Programme Office.

ESNC 2017: ESA space solutions award winners Access the image

Last year the French Attentis entrepreneurs won the ESA prize with their smart building permit time stamping system based exactly on the precise Galileo positioning data.

In several countries, France, Italy, Portugal, Finland and Belgium, after getting building permits owners must display a notice sign on their property to inform their neighbours, who then have a limited time to file an objection.

To avoid late objections, litigation, and costly delay in ongoing or near-finished works, owners can with the Attentis solution now easily proof that they have indeed displayed the mandatory signs, and in time.

ESNC 2016: ESA space solutions Prize winnerAccess the image

Previous ESA space solutions prize winners include an innovative bicycle bell that guides the cyclist through the traffic without having to access a smart phone navigator, a low-cost, very compact, high-accuracy positioning unit easily deployable in a wide range of applications providing opportunities for other inventors, and a ‘stickNtrack’ localisation system which creates a wide range of new business opportunities in tracking trailers, containers, machinery, tools, bikes and the like.

ESA Business incubation Centres: turn ESNC ideas into start-ups

The ESNC winners can apply to one of the ESA Business Incubation Centres (ESA BICs) to develop further their ideas into companies. Business and technical support are provided, in addition to seed money and loan investment schemes.

The ESA BIC network is the world’s largest ecosystem for space related entrepreneurship with 18 centres in 15 European countries, operated under ESA´s Technology Transfer Programme and Business Incubation Office. More than 600 new start-ups have so far been fostered throughout Europe, with yearly taking in another 160 new start-ups.

More about ESNC here.

More about ESA Business Incubation Centres here

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