The FIT (Foundation for Technological Innovation) has granted an Innogrant (CHF 100’000) to support two EPFL start-up projects: LBTech and Space4Impact.
LBTech’s technology aims to let us be connected wherever we are, while Space4Impact looks to find answers to the challenges faced on earth through space technology.
LBTech, a project to connect people wherever they are
We live in an increasingly connected world with mobile phones playing an intrinsic part of our day to day. Too often, however, mobile connection indoors can be spotty or non-existent. That’s because our homes, offices, and even transport, acts a little bit like a Faraday cage: modern glazing is perfect for keeping us warm, but act as barriers to mobile phone frequencies.
LBTech from the EPFL Solar Energy and Building Physics Laboratory has come up with a new high-precision laser system, which structures traditional glazing so it keeps its thermal insulation properties but also allows phone and satellite signals through. The team are already working with Swiss railway companies to renew the windows on their rolling stock. Eventually, they hope to expand to cover the whole of Europe.
Using space technology to make positive impact on earth
(the mission of Space4Impact)
The New Space sector is booming and is anticipated to be worth over a thousand billion dollars by 2040. You may not realise it, but we all use space technology every day – from picking our phone to call someone to checking the weather forecast. Even your wireless headphones are a result of space technology! As the space sector grows, it brings with it new applications, technology and business opportunities. Space4Impact believes these applications have a vital role to play in achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Space4Impact’s mission is to harness the power of space technologies and put them to work here on earth to ensure a sustainable and positive future. Too often space-based innovation isn’t used to its highest because space-based companies can’t, or don’t know how to, reach their potential customers. Space4Impact will link New Space start-ups with non-space companies and investors to help them scale-up and accelerate their technology’s potential impact on society.