Satellite technology could be used to support the clean up of UK nuclear sites, as part of a new Space Data Challenge launched by the UK Space Agency in collaboration with the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA).
The Nuclear Decommissioning Space Data Challenge will encourage smaller businesses and university start-ups to research and develop satellite-enabled technologies that could help support the UK’s nuclear decommissioning efforts.
The UK has unrivalled expertise in nuclear decommissioning, cleaning up the environment, boosting the economy and delivering highly-skilled jobs.
The Space Data Challenge is looking for innovative new ideas that could support:
- Rooftop Inspections – remote sensing of difficult to access, potentially dangerous environments
- Building Site Plan Updates – regular and automated updates of building layouts
- Bulk Container identification – using satellite imagery to count containers and monitor them
- On-site Traffic Management – identifying vehicles on sites and where they are parked
The winning concept or prototype will receive specialist space and business development support worth £10,000 from the Satellite Applications Catapult, sponsored by the NDA, to help the product to market.
The Space Data Challenge is part of the UK Space Agency’s Space for Smarter Government Programme which aims to increase the use of space technologies in the public sector to improve policy making and efficiency.
Emily Gravestock, Head of Applications Strategy at the UK Space Agency said:
‘The Space for Smarter Government Programme is a fantastic opportunity for public sector organisations to access satellite imagery to explore the art of the possible with their colleagues.’
‘This partnership with the NDA is a great example of how this data can be used in a novel way, with the potential to support one of the most important environmental restoration projects in the world.’
Sara Huntingdon, NDA’s Head of Innovation said:
Remote monitoring is just one example of the uses of satellite technology that could benefit the nuclear sector,
There are so many opportunities here which we could explore, and I’m absolutely delighted that the NDA is the very first public sector organisation to collaborate with the UK Space Agency on this challenge.
The deadline for proposals is midday 16 December. Applicants who are successful in the first stage will be invited to pitch their ideas “Dragons’ Den” style to a judging panel of representatives from the UK Space Agency and the NDA Group.
Melanie Brownridge, NDA Technology and Innovation Director said:
‘We’re committed to encouraging the development of ideas for decommissioning, and to working with other industrial sectors on the exchange or adaptation of technologies.’
‘We’ve welcomed the UK Space Agency to our NDA supply chain events for the last 2 years, so are really pleased to embark on a more structured collaborative initiative.’