A team from the University of Glasgow has won £600,000 in a government competition to develop a climate change satellite to be launched from the UK.

The 10 students designed a Coastal and Coastal Vegetation Analysis Satellite to help scientists and policymakers understand the impact of climate change on coastal regions as part of a drift design competition organized by the UK Space Agency and the Ministry of transport.

The winning team from Glasgow, called OirthirSAT, beat more than 40 UK teams aged between 16 and 37, with judges praising their entry for identifying a clear way of tackling climate change and testing new technologies.

“Satellite technology plays a crucial role in monitoring our climate and it is fantastic to see so many innovative ideas to help tackle the most pressing issue facing our planet. My congratulations go to the winners from the University of Glasgow for their excellent design,” said Dr Paul Bate, Chief Executive of the British Space Agency. “The countdown to the first satellite launch from UK soil is underway and it will be a historic year for our space sector. Being the first country in Europe to offer a launch will further boost our satellite industry, creating hundreds of new jobs in the UK.”

The Nanosat Design Competition opened in November 2021 with aspiring space scientists invited to design a small satellite suitable for launch from the UK to help inform decisions on climate change.

Five teams were selected from the initial entries to go through the final stage, which included a four-month mentoring program with experts from the space sector.


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