Nationwide search begins for young space entrepreneurs

Here’s what you need to know 

The UK Space Agency is offering young people expert advice for their ideas of how satellites could improve life on Earth and a share of a £50,000 prize, in a competition launching today (Tuesday 2 January).

The SatelLife Challenge, now in its second year, is looking for innovative proposals from those aged 11 to 22 which have the potential to use data collected from space to benefit our economy, health or the environment. 

Ideas from last year’s competition ranged from solutions to help increase the survival rate of heart attack victims by using GPS trackers in fitness devices, to an app that warns people about impending natural disasters, guides them safely away and alerts emergency services. 

Satellites support the economy and everyday life, and this competition gives young people the chance to test their ideas with industry experts and perhaps one day become part of the fastest growing sector of the UK economy. 

The UK space industry builds 40 per cent of the world’s small satellites and 25 per cent of the world’s telecommunications satellites. It supports 40,000 jobs and generates £14 billion in revenue across the country. 

Science Minister Jo Johnson said: 

“Satellites are shaping our society and increasingly important for our economy. Every second they send information around the world, keep shipping lanes and flightpaths clear and help us get to where we want to be. 

“Young people today will be an integral part of our mission to grow the UK’s share of the global space market to 10 per cent by 2030, as set out in our industrial strategy. We need to ensure the potential benefits of space are felt across the whole economy and encourage young British entrepreneurs to develop ideas that rival the best in the world.” 

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