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Detailed guide: Apply for funding through the National Space Technology Programme

3 Aug 2017, 09:14 UTC
Detailed guide: Apply for funding through the National Space Technology Programme

Updated: Currently funded fast track and path finder projects have been announced and a new project highlight added.The UK Space Agency’s aim is to drive growth into the UK economy by supporting the development of space technology and skills, as embodied in the UK Space, Innovation and Growth Strategy (Space IGS).

The National Space Technology Programme (NSTP) offers support by funding industry, academia and other (not for profit) government institutions, who are looking to develop technology and build new capabilities for the UK Space sector. NSTP offers funding opportunities for projects across all ranges, from startup companies to more established industry. We encourage collaboration on projects both large and small, inspiring new and existing industries to develop and contribute to the growth of the UK economy.

The NSTP funds four types of grants, Flagships, Fastracks, Pathfinder and Grants for Exploratory Ideas. The NSTP team will co-ordinate and oversee the activities of each project to ensure that the Agency objectives are met.

Project Highlights





MicroLaunch Rectenna

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Ku-Band Satellite Receiver without RF Local Oscillators, Mixers or IF Filters

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Optical fibre sensor to measure nanometre changes in position

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How to apply for funding

The NSTP announces funding opportunities each year for projects that align with the National Space Technology Strategy, using related technology roadmaps. We welcome proposals across the following themes:

access to space
sensing
positioning, navigation and timing
exploration and Robotics
telecommunications

Throughout the year we will announce project calls with varying financial opportunities to industry, academia and not for profit institutions. You will be invited to apply by providing a proposal of the work you wish to undertake, producing financial tables with project outcomes and future development.

Funding for industry is measured by General Block Exemption Regulations (GBER), with rates depending on the type of project you wish to undertake.

An announcement of opportunity and everything you need to assist your application will be available here when a call is announced.

Project types

Grants for Exploratory Ideas (GEI)

Grants for exploratory ideas are mini studies with a maximum duration of 3 months; receiving a grant of up to £10k.

The UK Space Agency particularly likes to encourage organisations (industry, academia and SMEs) new to space technology to participate in GEI calls.

Example activities are:

early TRL innovation
new technology concepts
knowledge transfer
skills development
refining an idea
undertaking a market survey
proof of Concept.

Pathfinder

Pathfinder projects will normally last 6 months; receiving a grant of up to £50k. They typically developing to technology readiness level (TRL) 2-3. Collaboration is encouraged on projects and should remain within the NSTP objectives.

Example activities are:

fundamental research
feasibility studies
industrial research

Fast Track

Fast Track projects normally last 12 months; receiving a grant of up to £150k. These should be of the highest technical quality and be highly innovative. Again, collaboration is encouraged and should remain within the NSTP objectives.

Example activities are:

feasibility studies
industrial research
experimental development

Flagship

Flagship projects normally run over 2 years; receiving a grant of up to £1 million. These should develop technologies to a high TRL (typically 5 or above), offer a significant commercial opportunity and have a clear exploitation route to market.

Currently funded projects

Fast track



Project Title
Lead Organisation




Critical assessment of the production and performance of a large format SWIR avalanche photodiode array
Leonardo MW Ltd


Quantum Research CubeSat
University of Strathclyde


The Development of Advanced Composite Materials for Use in Non-Metallic Liquid and Gas Propellant Storage Tank Applications
Haydale Composite Solutions Ltd.


Cost-Effective Micro-Vibration isolation for S/C with High Stability Requirements
University of Surrey


Smart tanks for space – TRL raising and validation
Atout Process Limited


FSW & Spin-forming Modern Propellant Tanks
Horizon Space Technologies Ltd


AQUAJET
AVS UK Ltd. (AVS)


Integrated Microwave Propulsion Architecture for Telecommunications Satellite (IMPULSE)
University of Southampton


Space IR Camera Flight Design
Neptec UK Ltd


Methera System Feasibility
Methera Global Communications Limited


Light-field photography: Technology development of bespoke multispectral optics for Earth, lunar and planetary observations
Dynamic Imaging Analytics Limited


3-D Printed Millimetre-wave Components for Guided-wave and Quasi-optical Systems for Spacecraft Payloads
National Physical Laboratory


Halo Thruster 200 Development
Surrey Satellite Technology Limited


Scalable On Board Data Handling Architecture for Nano and Microsatellites
University of Surrey


Packaging Superconducting Detectors, Sensors and Electronics for Space Applications
University of Cambridge


TDI CMOS Capability Development
e2v


Photonic SAR study
Airbus Defence and Space Limited


HTP Turbopump Development
Lena Space Ltd.


Compact fibre-based optical oscillator for ground and space applications
National Physical Laboratory


Development of an optical fibre injector for LISA
Glasgow University

Pathfinder



Project Title
Lead Organisation




Low Cost Stepper Motor Gearbox (SMG)
Reliance Precision Ltd


Towards a Genuine Engineering Design-for-Demise
 


Tool
Belstead Research Limited


Additive manufacturing of space-based optics
STFC UK Astronomy Technology Centre


Nanosatellite Telecommunications: A market and system study for Machine-to-Machine applications
Clyde Space Ltd.


NREP AstroTube™ Max Boom Industrial Research
Oxford Space Systems


Development of Cost Effective Cryogenic Propellant Tanks
Geodome Ltd


Review and gap analysis of UK space sector technology base identifying routes to exploitation and growth via in-orbit demonstration and services
In-Space Missions Ltd


Advanced real time flow Diagnosis of Rocket Engine Combustion (ADREC)
Kingston University London


Scope of Mega-constellation Satellite Resource Management System
E2E Services Ltd


Physics-based Modelling and Simulation of Spaceplanes Nonequilibrium Aerodynamics
University of Strathclyde


BIFEP: A Beam Induced Fluorescence diagnostic device for Electronic Propulsion thrusters.
AVS UK Ltd. (AVS)


Development of a mintuarised multi-spectral thermal infrared (TIR) space imaging system for improving volcanic ash monitoring
University of Bristol


SNUGS: Service-based Next-generation User Ground Segment.
Catena Space Ltd


Compact Multispectral Imager for Nanosatellites
University of Strathclyde


Small scale drive electronics development
Thales Alenia Space UK Ltd


Launch Authorisation System (LAS)
Telespazio VEGA UK Ltd


Space Based Phase Change Cells for Calibration
Science Technology Facilities Council


Refractory Additive Layer Manufacturing for Commercial Space Applications (RADICAL)
University Of Southampton

Previously funded pathfinder projects





Previously funded pathfinder projects

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Previously funded fast track projects





Previously funded fast track projects

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