Space is easy… or is it?
Space is not easy. It is one of the hardest areas of technology, but we believe it needs to be easier. The future of our planet and the future of our species depends on it!
Today we are very proud to launch a new global initiative called Space is easy, which we officially announced at the NewSpace Europe Conference 2018 in Luxembourg, with a bold mission to make space easy for all humans.
Let’s start from the beginning.
I had an incredible privilege of participating in the Singularity University — Global Solutions Program 2017, which was a life-changing experience.
That’s where I met my then roommate and now co-founder Henry Sung.
As a part of the program, we were asked to focus on global warming and come up with a way to positively impact a billion people over the next 10 years.
After meeting some incredible super-stars from around the globe, having hundreds of conversations and going through rigorous training and debates, I discovered my purpose.
I wanted to be a part of bringing humanity together through space and solve the biggest issues facing us such as global warming.
It was a strange feeling, given that I came from Pakistan, where although I studied engineering, I never even imagined ending up at Singularity University, and particularly at the NASA Ames research center.
Especially talking to the first private female astronaut Anousheh Ansari, meeting Ex-NASA Ames Director Pete Worden, and hearing the incredible story and adventures of Jill Tarter with SETI, left a lasting impression.
Global Warming is one of the biggest existential threats facing us as humanity, and just last month IPCC in their latest report said that “limiting global warming to 1.5ºC would require rapid, far reaching and unprecedented changes in all aspects of society.”
There’s a lot of incredible work happening on all fronts to combat global warming: locally, regionally and globally, from understanding the problem to developing solutions, and we want to throw our hat in the ring to empower people from all countries to utilise space as a means to understanding and creating solutions to global warming.
Due to the NewSpace Revolution, particularly the cubesat standards, modular designs and the reusable rockets, the cost of doing business in space has reduced exponentially over the last decade.
From measuring weather data, to air-pollution and emissions monitoring, as well as applications in agriculture, energy, mining, etc — there are a lot of areas where many countries can utilise the benefits of space technology for sustainable development.
A lot of great work is happening to ensure that the benefits of space exploration are shared amongst all humans, in particular by United Nations Office of Outerspace Affairs, Space Generation Advisory Council and International Space University, however some financial barriers still remain.
Realising our collective networks and experience Henry and I have banded together to join this growing movement to empower and enable the emerging economies to not only understand and develop solutions to global warming but also share in the benefits of space exploration.
What is Space is Easy?
Our bold mission is to make space easy for all humans.
Our advantage is that Henry is from China and I am from Australia, both countries who are at the early stages of developing their commercial NewSpace ecosystem.
We also have the blessing of Singularity University and access to some of the world class advisors and potential partners, who have been a part of the space industry for many decades.
Space is easy will be a global platform with a head-quarters in Luxembourg and ‘satellite’ offices in Australia and China.
We plan to start with running a Global Space Challenge, offer satellite launch services through our partners in China, and establish SpaceTech Incubators in Luxembourg, Australia and China.
We are doing this to make ideas, launch opportunities, talent, and capital flow freely between countries in Europe, China and Australia before building out our global ecosystem.
Global Space Challenge
Our plan to make space easy is to start with taking the hassle out of launch services. There are a lot of good ideas, especially developed by young people across the globe, who do not have access to launch services due to legal and economic constraints.
The Global Space Challenge will officially take entries in late 2019 and here’s our plan:
- The challenge will be focused on UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), where we will take 50 teams from across the globe who will have 9 months to create new and innovative space technologies to monitor, measure or contribute towards the solution of SDGs.
- 10 finalists will be flown to Beijing to pitch at a televised competition in front of an international panel of judges.
- 3 of the most impactful technologies will be integrated into a 6U small satellite and launched into orbit via the Long March Rocket in 2020.
Exciting news is that we have already done the tough slog, and secured launch slots on the Long March Rocket in China for 2019 and 2020.
In the end, space cannot be a silo or a country specific effort. It has to be a collective endeavour to bring us all together.
More exciting updates coming soon!
Henry and Usman for the Space is easy team.
Please Note: The entries for Global Space Challenge are not open, but we will make an announcement when they do.