Czech Space Week shows benefits of space technologies

13. 11. 2018 | Source: Business and Investment Development Agency (CzechInvest)

We use them practically every day, though we often don’t even know it.

  • Czech Space Week is taking place from 9 to 18 November 2018
  • Approximately twenty events held in Prague and Brno for the expert and general public
  • In 2018, the Czech Republic is celebrating:
    • 40th anniversary of Czech astronaut Vladimír Remek’s first spaceflight
    • 40th anniversary of the launch of the first Czechoslovak satellite, Magion 1, into space
    • 10th anniversary of the Czech Republic’s membership in the European Space Agency

Velcro, cordless tools and satellite navigation systems are the most famous examples of using space technologies in everyday life. How space technologies currently impact and will further impact everyday life in the future is being demonstrated in Prague and Brno during Czech Space Week, which is packed with events from the expert and general public, from 9 to 19 November 2018.

Over the course of Czech Space Week, there will be roughly twenty events by means of which the Ministry of Transportation and CzechInvest, in cooperation with other partners, intend to familiarise the expert and general public with space activities and their benefits for science, business and everyday life.

These events include, for example, a conference on the Czech Republic’s decade of membership in the European Space Agency with foreign guests in attendance, the first Czech space-industry trade fair, a hackathon and space job fair for students, an open-house event at the Prague headquarters of the European Global Navigation Satellite Systems Agency (GSA) and a concert of science-fiction film music.

The Czech Republic is home to a number of technologically competent firms that have the ability and potential to assert themselves in international competition and to take part in projects whose results find uses on the market.

“European Space Agency programmes comprise the Czech Republic’s most important tool for development of space technologies and applications. Czech firms and scientists can thus work on outstanding technology projects that go beyond the technological, scientific and financial possibilities of the Czech Republic itself and for which international cooperation is necessary.

During the Czech Republic’s decade-long membership in ESA, more than forty firms and 22 research institutes have been involved in more than 300 projects. Thanks to international cooperation in consortiums, Czech firms are also involved in international supply chains that commercially supply solutions originally developed in ESA programmes. These firms are thus increasing their competitiveness and helping to build the Czech Republic’s knowledge economy,” says Minister of Transportation Dan Ťok, who is responsible for the Czech Republic’s involvement in ESA and EU space activities.

“Space technologies have found uses in numerous fields across all areas of human endeavour. And ideas for using them often originate with young firms, start-ups, that know how to apply space technologies, navigation data and satellite images in everyday life. Start-ups are a major source of innovative solutions and we therefore support the most promising of them in the ESA BIC Prague business incubator,” says Silvana Jirotková, CEO of CzechInvest.

The significance of space activities for future economic development was declared this year by the European Commission in its proposal to increase the space programme’s budget by 30% to EUR 16 billion. The significance of the Czech Republic in European space activities is also rising. Since the headquarters of the European Global Navigation Satellite Systems Agency (GSA) was relocated to Prague in 2012, it has attracted numerous foreign firms and institutions to the Czech Republic. The ESA BIC Prague space business incubator, which has been in operation since 2016, has incubated 13 Czech firms to date and expanded to Brno earlier this year.

Czech Space Week is organised by the Ministry of Transportation, CzechInvest and ESA BIC Prague as the culmination of celebrations of Czech Space Year 2018, which is marked by a number of major Czech space anniversaries including the 40th anniversary of Czechoslovak astronaut Vladimír Remek’s first spaceflight and the launch of the first Czechoslovak satellite, Magion 1, into space, as well as the tenth anniversary of the Czech Republic’s entry into the European Space Agency.

The general partner of Czech Space Week is OHB. The main partners are Thales Alenia Space, Honeywell, IBM and S.A.B. Aerospace. Partners are the City of Prague, the Office of the Government of the Czech Republic, the Technology Centre of the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, ESERO, Space Job Fair, European Space Talks, Vesmír pro lidstvo, the European Global Navigation Satellite Systems Agency, Brno Observatory and Planetarium and the South Moravian Innovation Centre. Media partners are Svět průmyslu, czechcrunch.cz, kosmonautix.cz and EkonTech.cz.

The detailed Czech Space Week programme is available at www.czechspaceyear.com/czech-space-week.

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