(this is part two of an article covering the Spaceport Norway 2022 Conference & Expo)
The first Spaceport Norway award was given in 2017, to Erik Tandberg - a space and science communication legend , worked his whole life engaging new audiences and inspiring many. The second Spaceport Norway award was given out to the former DG at Norwegian Space Agency, Bo Andersen, for his work on growing and stimulating Norway's participation in the ESA programs. The third award was given to Ann-Iren Kittang Jost, for her work on ambitious work connected to human spaceflight and use of resources in space, under her leadership of CIRiS in Trondheim.
After two years of global pandemic, we could give the award again - actually, we could give out two!
Truls Andersen, the CEO of EIDEL, received the first award of the evening because of his work the last five years:
Tonight’s first award will be given to a person that not really is a space industry person….he is known for not being able to say no to anything that can drive the business forward, and has since he took up his current position, enabled new growth and looked into new business areas, explored new business model and recruited new talent. He has in a short time changed the perception of what a space service company is. Under his business oriented leadership, he has transformed the company from being a solid “old space” company, to an agile “new space” company, that will continue to challenge the status quo going forward. He is the winner of Spaceport Norway Award 2022.
It was a great pleasure to give this award to Truls O.Andersen– we look forward to follow him and EIDEL going forward.
The second award, the Spaceport Norway Award Young Award, was given to Rannveig Marie Færgestad, for her role in engaging students in space related activities,
and being a source of inspiration for many outside her own university, like Ole Dokka said on stage at the Award Dinner:
...not only because she is smart, driven and super focused on a career in the space industry (really, she must never move into a different sector), but also because her leadership qualities directly and indirectly has ignited the space interest in lot of students, in and outside of Norway.
We can't wait to see what the future holds for Rannveig Marie Færgestad, right now hard at work on her PhD degree on space debris, we will stay as close as we can to her development and expect her to be speaker at next Spaceport Norway. You go rocket girl!
Early spring 22, we partnered up with ESA BIC Denmark, ESA BIC Sweden, ESA BIC Norway, ESA BIC Finland, and ESA BIC Estonia, to support the first Nordic 12-day pre-incubation accelerator program, NORDIC LAUNCH. The program is for Nordic space entrepreneurs to create and scale space-related startups using space to benefit the earth. The finalists got to pitch on the main stage at Spaceport Norway 2022 on both days. The energy, level of expertise and commitment to the space business ideas, were strong in all finalist teams, the jury had a difficult job picking the winner...but on the last day, right before Spaceport Norway 2022 was concluded, a winner was chosen:
RiverWorks has developed a business concept that unfortunately is getting more and more relevant and needed; Drones for Flood Management.
Because of climate change, flooding events are becoming more common and severe, costing thousands of lives - RiverWorks's idea is to use a specially designed drone – The HydroHex Drone – with multi-band GNSS to enable precise navigation in air and on water, enabling bathymetry aka underwater mapping. The data collection from this service is fast, cheap, can be deployed quickly, and give decision makers a new tool to predict and prepare, and save many lives.
We hope to see RiverWorks succeed in building their business and attracting investors and clients.
And we look forward to collaborate with the Nordic ESA Bics & Kjeller Innovation on Nordic Launch 2023!
Since our first conference in 2017, we have tried to find ways to support the younger generation and students. In 2019 we established a working partnership with the students in Trondheim, and supported the launch of Space NTNU – an umbrella organisation for other student organisations focused on space activities (Orbit and Propulse to mention two of them). That was also the first year we integrated sponsoring students in our sponsorship packages. This year we aimed for 100 relevant and motivated students, and we reached that goal. Thanks to our sponsors and largest exhibitors, it was possible to give 100 students free tickets to the conference.
A significant development since 2019, is the wider selection of universities the students came from, and the range of disciplines they represented:
NTNU – Norwegian University of Science and Technology
NHH - Norwegian School of Ecnomics
Østfold University College (HiØ)
This year it was not only engineering and science students, but material scientists, business developers & economists, entrepreneurship & innovation students and more.
We will keep the number 100 as a goal for sponsored students next year, but also include universities in Europe in our search for motivated next generation space talent.
To be continued in 2023!
Arranging an event like Spaceport Norway with the high quality standards we would like to have, is impossible without the best people. This year we had a fantastic team of student volunteers from Space NTNU, two extremely capable AV technicians and producers from the company Holi, a great team from the venue & The Oslo Way and a very experienced professional event project manager, overseeing the execution of the event and solving every challenge on the fly. When this team was on the stage for the last time,
the audience gave them standing ovation. That was a special moment.
Kudos for fantastic team work:
Registration team leader: Sander Aarli (Space NTNU)
Expo team leader: Kristin Mehli Skuterud (Space NTNU)
Mikkel Bølset Gisleberg
Event support team leder: Kristine Heier (Space NTNU)
Key Account Manager, The Old LIbrary: Maya Rydmo (The Oslo Way)
Venue Support, The Old LIbrary: Henriette Antonsen (The Oslo Way)
Production Manager: Steffen Stangeland (Holi)
Technical AV Manager: Ingve Steinskog (Holi)
Project Manager Spaceport Norway Event: Lise Bye Solheim (DiS)
You are all mega stars – We would love to work with all of you again!
To conclude part Deux of this long article, we want to say a special thank you to all our sponsors and supporters.
It would not be possible to develop, produce or arrange Spaceport Norway on this level, without the engagement and support from the industry, space and non-space.
Since we had to cancel the event in 2020 because of the global pandemic, we were determined to give every ticket or package what was purchased in 2019 and 2020, back to the individuals and companies, and we are proud to say that we were able to keep our promise.
We would also like to thank European Space Agency for supporting us from the beginning, NIFRO – NORWEGIAN INDUSTRIAL FORUM FOR SPACE ACTIVITIES for the work you do that also benefit development and growth in space sector, University of Oslo for being an excellent reception host and being a Lunar Sponsor through CENSSS , and a special thank you to Norwegian Space Agency, for the special support you provide on so many levels.
Before 1 December 2022, we will announce the dates, venue and main theme for Spaceport Norway 2023, and we will make a limited volume of early bird tickets and packages available on our website.
Until then - thanks for being a part of Spaceport Norway 2022.