In the East Midlands the predominant interest for inward investment is in downstream space applications. Specific opportunities focus on Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) and, to a lesser extent, Earth Observation (EO), with the market for these in the UK currently around £350 million per annum - a figure that is predicted to grow to £16 billion by 2015.

The continued development of GNSS is enabling a huge downstream market in services and equipment – 250 billion Euros plus by 2020. Today’s main markets in terms of volume are in GNSS-enabled mobile phones and Portable Navigation Devices. Earth Observation and GMES (Global Monitoring for Environment and Security) is a cornerstone of the EU’s Space Policy framework programme, with a development budget of 1.4 billion Euros (2007-13) to support the development and commercialisation of opportunities across public and private sector in support of mapping, resource and emergency management.

The University of Leicester enjoys worldwide recognition for its international research in space science, planetary exploration and earth observation science: the National Space Centre in Leciester is a £60M science visitor centre attracting over 200,000 visitors annually, with over 10,000 students and their science teachers participating in its Space Academy and other space education programmes. Meanwhile, the University of Nottingham is a world leader in space-based applications of GNSS.

We are proud of our assets in space-related technologies. These range from pure space research to testing and commercialisation of location-based applications, and are based in both commercial and research establishments. With an ever-increasing number of applications for space-related technology, England’s East Midlands is at the forefront of this sector.

Key sectors > New technologies > Space applications