10 reasons why Berlin will be the center for NewSpace in Germany

It is still the beginning

It all started in Berlin. In May 2016 Sven Przywarra and I, both Co-Founders of LiveEO and Organizer of NewSpaceVision, met at the InnoSpace conference with the same goal in mind.

I want to and I will build a Space Startup!

With this mission in mind we wanted to build an environment for entrepreneurs, techis, students, officials, VCs and everyone who is interested in the space industry. In the following two years we have grown the Meetup series NewSpaceVision, which Sven started in 2016, to a big conference with more than 250 attendees from all over Europe and have built a media presence with podcasts, tweets, articles and a newsletter. With LiveEO we started our own venture and in the past years a lot of young entrepreneurs came to our Meetups or other events to discuss how to start a space startup. In this period of time thanks to our network of NewSpaceVision and LiveEO we had a lot of discussions with all kinds of stakeholders of the space industry in Berlin, Germany, Europe and the World.

Sven Przywarra (left) and Daniel Seidel (right) in the final preparation of the NSV conference. Foto von Philipp Nöhr. visit http://www.wildfremder.de

In the past years we made our own small market research project by talking to officials, managers, employees and students from organizations such as DLR and ESA, the German Government, big corporates such as Airbus and OHB. With a few glasses of red wine at the award ceremony of the Copernicus Masters in Tallin we had a longer group chat with Robbie Schingler (Founder of Planet) and Pekka Laurila (Founder of Iceye, also check out our podcast with him). With frequent contact to C-level manager of successful SMEs and Startups such as Astrofein, Parttime Scientists, Berlin Space Technologies, Space Structures, ValiSpace and organizations such as the big attractor for Bavaria AZO from Oberpfaffenhofen you can get a good overview of the status of the German NewSpace scene.

However, if you want to understand the role and the status of Germanys NewSpace industry you have get a deeper dive into the US. Thanks to Sebastian Straube from Interstellar Ventures we got in contact to SpaceX and had several meetings with John Tucker to discuss the NewSpace industry with its different players and the diversity of different regions, nations, continents. John is the former NewSpace strategist and senior mission integrator of SpaceX and also founder of NewSpaceHub. With NewSpaceHub he has built the largest database for Space Startups you will find (https://newspacehub.co/) . His additional newsletter is perfect to start into the day. We always try to share our first-person experience in the space industry with you and everyone who is interested into the most exciting industry.

Sven Przywarra at the NewSpaceVision Conference. Foto von Philipp Nöhr. visit http://www.wildfremder.de

And in Berlin we could also have a deep link to one of the most vital Startup environments of the world. We met successful founders from various industries and also investors which have no connection to the space industry. Based on all of our experiences in the last years we are very convinced that Berlin is the best place for NewSpace Startups that want to build revolutionary products and do not only want to be an external subdivision of Airbus or OHB. Of course, we have to mention that Bavaria may be the leading space region in Germany. But NewSpace is mainly driven by miniaturization and the impact of the computer industry in both, hardware and software. And this is the chance for Berlin!

In the following I collected ten reasons why Berlin will be the new capital for NewSpace in Germany. It also shows that Berlins role in the space industry is already bigger than its public recognition and that Berlin may have a leading position in the near future by joining forces with our NewSpaceVision community and with the help of organizations such as Berlin Partner.

Our ten reasons

1. Berlin is the leading small satellite city in Germany

One of the biggest outcomes of the New Space age are small satellites. The Technical University of Berlin thanks to Professor Brieß enabled the leading small sat environment in Germany. There are a lot of spinoffs in Berlin such as German Orbital Systems, Magson and Berlin Space Technologies. Did you know that Astrofein and BST are the only German companies aside the primes (OHB and Airbus) who are able to build an entire satellite bus? And imagine Planet (labs) without the Rapideye satellites which were developed more than a decade ago in Berlin? However also for larger satellites you can find expertise with for example Sonaca space and Space Structures

2. Berlin has the only private Moon mission in Europe!

When Google started the LunarX prize in 2009 visionary engineers all over the globe started to work on a private moon mission. Maybe in Europe only people out of the city Berlin which is known for its craziness continue with such an ambitious vision. Today, the PTScientists from Berlin-Marzahn are the only private Moon mission in Europe which is alive. They are growing very fast in the past month and with strong partners such as AUDI, Vodafone and Red Bull they may also be the first private mission ever landed on the Moon.

3. Berlin has a matured ecosystem for Startups and is the leading VC city!

Berlin is for sure the leading Startup ecosystem in Germany and maybe of Europe. Counting the Startups per Capita Berlin is dominating the country. Startups in Berlin gain from a strong network, the highest density of accelerators and Startup Hubs and a lot of world leading conferences and events happening in Berlin. If you want to compete against the NewSpace companies from the valley in the US, Berlin has the advantage of far lower costs.

https://blog.creandum.com/looking-beyond-berlin-in-the-german-startup-ecosystem-f1602b0ab9c2
Startups per Capita (Credits: Peter Specht, Creandum) link to original article

NewSpace is financially driven by venture capital. The US is far ahead in this domain and the biggest satellite constellation today is operated by Planet and not Rapideye maybe because of this reason. However, if you look at the regions in Germany most of VC money is invested in Berlin. This could lead to the pole position for the Berlin space industry in the coming decades.

Number of VC backed Startups (Credit: Peter Specht, Creandum) link to original article

4. No other city in Germany attracts international talents more than Berlin!

For big visionary missions you have a big advantage if you can gain from a global talent pool. In Berlin it is normal that a bar keeper only serves in English. The city is growing incredibly fast and people from all over the world move to Berlin. In 2017 more than 47 percent of employees in Berlin based Startups were not German, followed by Munich with 44 percent. For international talents Berlin is location number one and for space technology we need international expertise.

5. Berlin together with Brandenburg is a leading research environment for space hardware and applications

When it comes to Geo Science there is no other place to be. At the GFZ in Potsdam the development of cutting edge Hardware missions such as GRACE, CHAMP or GOCE happens together with ESA, DLR and NASA. Some of the most advanced scientific space instruments for geo research were developed and operated at the GFZ were more than 1200 people work. Climate change is the leading global challenge of humankind in the 21st century and GFZ helps us to conquer it.

6. Berlin brings space down to earth!

Berlin is the headquarter for leading EO and Navigation software companies and hence, the best environment for business applications in Earth Observation and Navigation. With headquarters of Here and TomTom leading navigation technology and applications come out of Berlin.

Airbus has a big SAR (Synthetic Aperature Radar) department in Potsdam and is developing applications for the cutting-edge satellite TerraSAR. And also „Europe´s Google“ the leading software company SAP has a dependency and a research hub (HPI) in the region of Berlin.

And with LiveEO Sven and I will build Europe´s leading satellite data analytics company in the coming years out of the heart of Berlin. It is a vision and an ambitious goal but no theoretical dream considering that we already have very big customers and are raising one of the biggest seed fundings of Germanys space industry right now to close it until the end 2018. Our strong personal connection to Europe´s leading data providers Planet and Airbus helps us to reach our ambitious goals and together with those companies we build cutting edge applications for infrastructure grids, the backbones of our modern society. From our LiveEO office we walk a few minutes to Planets headquarter of Europe. That’s a close connection to one of the hottest New Space companies.

7. Berlin is the city where creativity meets technology!

New ideas and visions also need an exchange with creative thinkers and artists if you want to build an entire new community out of it. In Berlin you can just ask your favorite musician who sold over a million of copies to say something nice for your conference and he is down with it. 🙂 Space is for everyone and with the help of artists you can have a big outreach to excite more people for space. Berlin = creativity!

8. Berlin is Planets headquarter of Europe!

Planet is operating the largest fleet of satellites with mission control next to the Berliner Ku’damm directly in the city. In the past years Planet had an aggressive Europe strategy and signed big contracts with ESA, Airbus and others. They act as a driver for the ecosystem and are accelerating Startups. Guess who was our first commercial sponsor beside the Master for Space Engineering Berlin? Exactly, it was Planet! We asked a lot of big institutions to sponsor NSV but Planet just did it because with their US culture they know how important a strong community is to build up a healthy ecosystem.

9. Customers for NewSpace companies are in Berlin!

A lot of big corporates have a headquarter or at least a big office in Berlin. The close connection to the Government and big trade fairs such as ILA happen in Berlin. Most of potential big customers build up innovation hubs in Berlin and they are plopping up everywhere. This is the chance for entrepreneurs to sell their products more easily in non-space industries. If you are a pure grantrepreneur maybe another city is better for you.

10. Berlin has started joining forces now!

Bavaria has the big advantage that the local space industry has a strong support by the Bavarian government. With the AZO they have a great organization which is connecting the industry. Bremen has the big advantage of hosting the unique German prime OHB which is connecting the industry. In Berlin every small company was operating kind of isolated. However, thanks to the initiative of Juliane Haupt from Berlin Partner companies of the region start to join forces now. She started with quarterly meetings of all stakeholders in the region of Berlin Brandenburg and now the connection to other clusters such as optics and IT will enable new innovations. With NewSpaceVision we have also built up a huge community and are Europe´s biggest NewSpace Meetup series with close to 1000 members (to date).

New-Space-Berlin_en

Download the overview of Berlins Space industry with this link: Berlin Partners Flyer for NewSpace Berlin

 

New NewSpaceVision Content and Meetups

In the coming weeks we will share new content and we will also record new podcasts at the IAC. We changed our Meetup format from monthly to quarterly but with more guests for one topic at an evening event. The next is planned after the IAC and will be announced soon.

This article represents my (Daniel Seidel) personal opinion.

Sven, Albrecht and I are happy to discuss the points at the IAC with everyone whos interested. If you work at an exciting company or if you have an exciting job within the space industry and want to discuss or present space topics in a podcast feel free to contact us via: info@newspace.vision

If you want to know more about our exciting journey with LiveEO also feel free to contact us via info@live-eo.com.

Best Regards

Daniel and the NSV team

NewSpaceVision Podcast #3 – Kadri Bussov from ESTcube


The ESTcube foundation is currently building the ESTcube-2 satellite. Its main objectives are to test plasma brake deorbiting capabilities and electric solar wind sail propulsion. The 3U cubesat will also include two cameras, a high-speed communication subsystem and test a corrosion resistant coating. We sit down with Kadri Bussov, member of the management board of ESTcube.

Kadri Bussov on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/kadri-bussov-1b9821a6/

ESTcube offical page: https://www.estcube.eu/en
ESTcube facebook: https://www.facebook.com/estcube
ESTcube twitter: https://twitter.com/estcube

ESTcube-2 article: https://phys.org/news/2017-04-estonian-cubesat-technologies-future-moon-orbiting.html

ESTcube-1 EO portal: https://directory.eoportal.org/web/eoportal/satellite-missions/e/estcube-1
ESTcube-1 Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ESTCube-1

Article on camera spin-off company ESTSat: http://arcticstartup.com/estonian-team-delivers-earth-observation-cameras-european-space-agency-satellite/

NewSpaceVision conference: http://newspacevision.com/

NSV Podcast #2 with Dallas Kasaboski, Analyst at Northern Sky Research

Hey NewSpaceVisionaries,

Our second podcast is out now! During the European Space Week in Tallinn we had the pleasure to talk to Dallas Kasaboski analyst at Northern Sky Research and talked with him about e.g. the European New Space market, funding mentality, differences between the USA and Europe and the earth observation market. We learned a lot and are sure you will get some insights from this episode! The podcast was recorded on the 9th November in Estonia.

The NewSpaceVision Podcast series focus on entrepreneurship in the field of NewSpace in Europe and abroad!

We would love to hear your feedback via our social media channels or info@newspace.vision.

Sven Przywarra (@svenprzy)& Daniel Seidel (@Daninho89)

PS: We are always looking for interesting podcast guests!

Our Newsletter#6 with a summary of the European Space Week in Tallinn was published today. If you are interested in Albrechts biweekly Update about a specific NewSpace topic please sign-up below.

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NewSpace in Europe #5: IAC 2017

Dear NewSpaceVisionaries,

there are many congresses out there which belong to the space topic (actually we should work out an overview someday). The reason why I focus on the IAC is that some very interesting announcements and cooperation declarations were made at the world’s largest gathering of space people. Big and small player sat together to form the future of space exploration …
Michelle, founder of HigherOrbits, captured it for us.

If you want to have a student’s perspective on the congress check out the Blogposts from BlueSat Members.

Big News at IAC

At the IAC 2017 opening ceremony Sen. Simon Birmingham, minister of education in Australia, stated  that Australia will establish a national space agency.
The Guardian is wondering what the Australian Space Agency is doing in the near future.
And a lot of people were asking what the name could be. And no, oficially the agency is not called ARSE.


At the IAC 2016 Elon Musk revealed his Mars Colonization Plan and was then criticised by some experts. One of them is Robert Zubrin who wrote a long article about his point of view and also gives some advice on how to do it better.
This time Musk updated his plan to get to Mars and how to colonize it. Moreover he presented a plan for short duration travel on earth with the Big Fucking Rocket (BFR) which should fly to Mars as well. This announcement has triggered an ongoing discussion. Some of them you can find here:

First expert reaction: Space.com
Focusing on the business plan: The Verge
When historians look back: Next Big Future
For sure we will see further reaction in the coming days which dive deeper into the topic.


Lockheed Martin updated their vision for Mars Base Camp. After Orions missions EM-1, EM-2 and the Deep Space Gateway the Mars Base Camp with lander, is the next step. Their video describes the vision very well and clear. Here you can see the complete conference presentation.
In this presentation the Berlin based Part Time Scientists were mentioned and a picture of their rover had been shown to tell us how commercialisation of space could work. Congrats to PTS on that way!

Small News at IAC

 

While I checked the IAC 2017 Main Programme and was searching for the term „NewSpace“ I stumbled upon Narayan Prasad Nagendra. He is, amongst other positions, the curator of New Space India. If you would like to know how the India NewSpace eco system looks like and how to foster it check out the newest article from NewSpace India. Maybe we can establish a few ideas in Europe as well.

I was a bit shocked when I realized that the last newsletter I published is four weeks ago. I feel a bit sorry for delaying this newsletter but I think I have a good excuse for that. I had to organize the arrival of our newborn earthling :).

While I am having a look into the IAC 2018 Program, the congress will be held in Bremen, Germany, I say:
See you in the next newsletter :).

Yours Albrecht Köhler

 

Do You Like NewSpaceVision? Buy us a Coffee. ☕

 

Check out our new NSV space songs playlist for you

Dear NewSpaceVisionaries,

it´s Daniel here and I hope you all may love what I created within the last weeks. I created an awesome space songs playlist on Spotify which may inspire your work and may increase your productivity. Before you listen to the songs I want to show you why it does mean a lot to me and why space songs are awesome. With our young professional conference, we want to inspire more people to join space companies and startups in Europe. So, feel free to share this playlist to everyone who may be interested. This will attract more people to grow the industry. It is the inception method 😉 If you like what we are doing and if you love this playlist spend us one coffee or more via PayPal.

First of all, we are space enthusiasts. What does that mean? Space is not only our job, it is our passion since our childhood. We played a lot of space games, watched space movies, created awesome spaceships with LEGO and later studied space engineering or related topics. It´s true that I was Mr. Spock on carnival in Düsseldorf with Spocks ears, my own communicator and phaser. When your job is your passion and music is your passion than both things come together. I´m open for all music genres so you will find classic and Hip-Hop as well as Rock and various Electronic styles. I bet there a more songs you love than songs you don´t like. So just skip songs that may disrupt your inner balance. When I must deliver a lot of output I often hear one song on repeat to reach a mental state of holistic focus on the work. A lot high class performer discussed this topic (read here). You will find a lot of songs you can hear thousands of times in the playlist. I checked it 😉

Let me tell you a bit about some songs in the playlist:

When we go back to the first space age a lot of artists started creating awesome songs such as „space oddity (1969) in the year of the moon landing. And of course, you will find the theme song of star treks original series which started in 1966 and inspired generations of young engineers to work in the space industry. Seven years after the last man Eugene Cernan walked on the moon the song „Walking on the moon (1979)“ was published and now exists in a variety of versions. Another song I added is from Star Wars. I tell you it is a funny and awesome feeling when you are in the supermarket and the Star Wars imperial march starts playing in your headphones. But there are some funny songs in the list, too. If you want someone to learn the solar system in a funny way, just play „solar system (1977)“ by the beach boys.

We are talking a lot about asteroid mining today and already landed Philae after a long journey with Rosetta on comet Churyumov-Gerasimenko. One movie which climax was landing on an asteroid to save humanity was Armageddon by Michael Bay in 1998. I added two songs of this movie which are „Leaving on a jet plane (1969)“ and of course „I don´t want to miss a thing“ which was the theme song of this movie. One year before Armageddon was in cinemas the prodigy published the song „Firestarter“ which is the perfect song for every rocket scientist (yes, the video is kind of crazy). One song I also really love while coding or engineering is „Out of space“ from the prodigy which was published in 1992 but sounds like it was just published. Yes, this video is also kind of crazy but there are rockets and a moon launch of Apollo in it.

Other songs you can find are „I´d love to change the world (2014)“ from the Star Trek Discovery Trailer or the well-known electro song „Sternenkinder (2011)“.

I also added a lot of songs published within the last months and years and added a few original NASA audios to the playlist. I´ll add new songs regularly. Of course, you can send us songs we should add by sending us an E-Mail to Daniel@newspace.Vision or by writing a comment here on the website. So, if you cannot wait just visit our playlist and do not forget to follow it on Spotify:

 

Do You Like NewSpaceVision and the playlist? Buy us a Coffee. ☕

Best Regards
Daniel