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Column - Innovation with space technology

Imagine having access to all the technology and knowledge of a non-commercially motivated R&D lab and more than 2500 experts based in the Netherlands who are active across Europe in a number of technological sectors. What would you do and where does your interest lie? This lab is located right in our backyard. That is ESA-ESTEC, the heart of European space technology in Noordwijk.

Gaining insight into this technology and obtaining access requires a few steps. The challenge is in finding the solution to a technological problem by using space technology innovations. To commercially exploit space technology, ESA has set up the Technology Transfer Programme. By using a series of brokers and incubators that operate under the name Space Solutions, we are able to provide space technology innovations to startups and other companies.

A successful cross over from space to non-space requires not only solid technology scouting but also the ability to adapt the identified technology. During the follow-up phase of the commercialisation process, it will also be essential to set up the right agreements on various issues such as IP.

Startups often lack this type of knowledge, not only in terms of information, but also in drawing up a good contract. The ESA BIC Programme facilitates this. This allows the startup to develop in a relevant network of ESA technical specialists and associated organisations, including V.O. This type of support is a dire necessity for new companies and increases their chances of succeeding.

You are very welcome to our backyard.

Martijn Seijger
Director Space Business Innovation Centre Noordwijk

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