This month an Italian company based in Perugia is celebrating a decade of successful collaboration with ESA. RF Microtech has experienced remarkable growth in the last few years, which has put the medieval town – normally famous for its stunning scenery, legendary chocolate and its jazz festival – firmly on the technology map.
The race for in-orbit capacity for data transmission has been given a big helping hand with the development of the first large European Q/V-band reflector. The reflector, which was developed under ESA’s ARTES Advanced Technology (AT) programme, along with German Space subsystems specialist HPS GmbH is a significant step forward in the conception of terabit satellites.
The Harwell Space Cluster just outside Oxford now employs more than 1,000 people across 92 organisations – and a showcase event on 27 June emphasised that most of those taking part are receiving support from ESA for their growth plans.
The thermal vacuum test campaign of the first Spacebus Neo satellite was completed on 25 June. Less than 100 metres from the Mediterranean Sea, the Konnect satellite has spent the past six weeks being exposed to the cold emptiness of space.
Additive Manufacturing (AM) can be considered one of the most disruptive emerging technologies, its radical approach being one of the driving forces of the ‘fourth industrial revolution’. An Innovative aerospace supplier, SWISSto12, has developed under ESA’s ARTES Advanced Technology programme a patented technology based on AM to produce key satellite components – opening a new world of solutions for radio frequency applications.
A mobile phone app that uses space tech to identify the healthiest way to sunbathe has won the industrial approval of BASF, a giant chemical company that makes the ingredients for sunscreen and many other products.