In its fifth year, the Copernicus Masters competition is open again. Ideas for services, business concepts and applications based on satellite Earth observation data are now being accepted.
The vast amounts of data produced by Europe’s Copernicus environment monitoring programme and its Sentinel satellites open the door to countless products and applications in a wide array of business sectors.
Since 2011, ESA and Germany’s Anwendungszentrum GmbH Oberpfaffenhofen have organised the Copernicus Masters competition to aid entrepreneurs in bringing their innovations to market. The competition offers a prize pool of over €300 000 in cash prizes, access to a leading international network, corresponding data, start-up funding and other support.
Participants can choose from a number of Challenges covering topics such as environmental monitoring, transportation logistics, agriculture and forestry, civil security, cloud computing and mobile services, as well as the innovative use of high-resolution satellite imagery and radar data.
The winner of each competition Challenge will be selected by a jury of research and industry experts. Along with the prizes in the challenge, the overall winner – the Copernicus Master 2015 – will receive €20 000 and a satellite data package worth an additional €60 000.
Last year was the competition’s most successful so far, receiving more than 170 entries from 43 countries. The winners from the past years are turning their business ideas into reality with the help of their Challenge partners, while some have already transformed their projects into market-ready products.
“Taking part in Copernicus Masters gave us the chance to make some key contacts and gather valuable feedback,” said John Smedegaard, a co-founder of Ceptu, which won the CloudEO Farming Challenge in 2014.
“The whole process was a huge help in advancing our idea and developing it into a commercial product through our new start-up.”
Submissions for all Challenges will be accepted from 15 April to 13 July. For more information, visit the Copernicus Masters website.
This year’s competition is supported by a number of world-class partners, including ESA, the DLR German Aerospace Center, T-Systems International GmbH, Satellite Applications Catapult Ltd, Greece's National Cadastre and Mapping Agency, CloudEO AG, European Space Imaging GmbH and GEO Magazine.