ESNC University Challenge: Sponsors win too!

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06 February 2013

The University Challenge prize is one of the highlights of the prestigious annual European Satellite Navigation Competition (ESNC). This special prize rewards innovative ideas emerging from Europe’s universities. For 2013, the prize is looking to recruit new sponsors. This could be your opportunity to support our next generation of GNSS entrepreneurs and promote your organisation in a dynamic sector.

The 2012 University Challenge winners: Filipe Sousa and Luis Gomes. © ESNCSince its establishment in 2004, more than 7 000 developers have participated in the ESNC. The spectrum of business ideas submitted to the judging panels over the years reflects the incredibly wide reach of this future-orientated technology. Application examples range from healthcare and leisure to traffic management, logistics and precision agriculture.

The ESNC awards ceremony is one of the highlights of the year for the European GNSS community. The ceremony showcases some of the best innovations and most enterprising businesses and individuals. It attracts an audience representing the majority of the top European players in this dynamic sector.

Enterprising winners

Satellite navigation and its associated technologies show enormous potential to provide innovative solutions to specific industrial issues over many sectors. Sponsorship of a prize category, such as the University Challenge, not only offers opportunities for media exposure for sponsors during the competition and ceremony, but can also lead directly to business opportunities or cooperation with winning teams.

The objective of the University Challenge special prize is to bridge the gap between GNSS academic research and innovative business with the aim of fostering the transformation of good ideas into profitable commercial ventures.

In addition to addressing students and research associates with a background in aerospace and GNSS-specific courses of study, the ESNC University Challenge seeks to reach out to any young researchers working in areas of potential application of satellite technology. This could include prospective automotive engineers, logistics providers, game and other mobile application developers, or health promoters. The main criteria for success are the creativity of the idea and the needs of the relevant market rather than the technological perfection of the business ideas submitted.

Prize package

The 2012 University Challenge winners were two Portuguese students Luis Gomes and Filipe Sousa with their social project and application Access ON. This idea aims to assist persons with limited mobility by identifying accessibility issues and reporting them anonymously to the appropriate authority.

The crowd-sourced app allows an obstruction to be automatically geo-tagged, photographed, the specific accessibility issue identified and the data uploaded to a website and communicated to partner organisation that will remedy the situation.

The 2012 winning team received a €1 000 cash prize, a consultation package with Awapatent AB, one of Europe’s leading intellectual property firms, worth €5 000 and free entry to the prestigious ESA International Summer School on GNSS.


As well as usual promotional opportunities, such as logos and sponsor names on ESNC promotional materials, the prize sponsor gets to be part of the evaluation panel and has access to all ideas that are submitted for the University Challenge.

In addition, all sponsors are promoted during the ESNC awards ceremony itself and get access to a truly unique international network of innovation and expertise covering a wide range of industrial sectors, government contacts (regional, national and international) and research organisations.

To find more information on sponsorship possibilities for the ESNC 2013, contact Andreas Dippelhofer at the ESNC organiser Anwendungszentrum GmbH Oberpfaffenhofen.

Media note: This feature can be republished without charge provided the European GNSS Agency (GSA) is acknowledged as the source at the top or the bottom of the story. You must request permission before you use any of the photographs on the site. If you republish, we would be grateful if you could link back to the GSA website.

More information:

EGNOS Portal

European Satellite Navigation Competition 2013

ESA International Summer School on GNSS

Updated: Mar 06, 2014