Space for Cultural Heritage Workshop

The first event of the ESA Commercialisation Days took place in ESA – ESTEC on 19 April 2023. This event was aimed at illustrating the opportunities that the space sector can offer to the Healthcare and Biotechnologies industries.

Topic overview: How Space, Health and Biotech industries can collaborate to improve in the future

The event inaugurated the new ESA Commercialisation Days series and was focused on three different areas of interest that were explored in dedicated sessions. The first session was about medical and biomedical research in space, which is increasingly finding its way into terrestrial applications, enabling both public and private actors to elevate their understanding of a broad range of diseases and to improve as well as develop new medicine and treatments for humans on Earth. The second session showed how telemedicine is enabling new forms of outpatient care through remote diagnosis, treatment, monitoring and the emergence of digital platforms. The last session focused on Earth Observation and its strong impact on public health as well as its contribute to reduce issues related to climate, air and water quality and epidemiology. During the event start-ups and companies showed their perspective about these topics pitching their ideas and joining different roundtables.


The event started with a welcome message from the ESA Director of Commercialisation, Industry and Procurement Géraldine Naja, followed by Donatella Ponziani and Luca Del Monte from the ESA Commercialisation department who introduced the different topics. Thomas Crone, Business Analyst at ESA, discussed global health trends and space applications in the sector.


Session 1: Medical and Biomedical Reserach

The first session was introduced by Angelique Van Ombergen, Discipline Lead for Life Sciences at ESA, who gave an overview of research carried on by ESA in space and the impacts that space can have on the human body. 

Here the experts and start-ups who pitched during session 1.


Panel 1: Medical and Biomedical Research

Participants in the first panel discussed how to create awareness about the benefits that space can provide to medicine and how to demonstrate the capabilities of microgravity research.

Here the participants of the panel moderated by Fabio Caramelli, Exploitation Manager at ESA.

Angélique Verrecchia – Space Project Coordinator, MEDES Live Discussion  
Leonardo Surdo – Project Manager and Business Strategist, Space Applications Services Live Discussion  
Paul Kamoun – Chief Marketing and Business Development Officer, SpacePharma Live Discussion  
Philip Carvil – Head of North West Clusters, STFC Live Discussion  
Saskia Thönißen – Network Manager, EurA AG Live Discussion  
Steffen Thirstrup – CSO, European Medicine Agency Live Discussion  


Session 2: Telemedicine and Digital Health

Prof. Gerhard Hindricks, Digital Health Committee Chair at the European Society of Cardiology, introduced the second session on Telemedicine and Digital Health sharing some perspectives from the cardiovascular field on new technology and telemedicine. Then, Arnaud Runge, Medical Engineer at ESA, gave an overview on how ESA supports health projects through its activities.

Here the experts and start-ups who pitched during session 2.


Panel 2: Telemedicine and Digital Health

In the second panel, the speakers explored the opportunities of the utilisation of digital technologies for health and how ESA can help exploit those opportunities and facilitate matches through space support. The discussion focused on the role of digital technologies in healthcare and the problems that they could help solve. Also, next frontiers and future applications in telemedicine were explored.

Here the participants of the second panel moderated by Rita Rinaldo, Head of Projects and Studies Implementation Division at ESA.

Michael Merritt – Strategy and Operation, Skyports Live Discussion  
Prof. Gerhard Hindricks – Digital Health Committee Chair, European Society of Cardiology Live Discussion  
Sören Meelby – Business and Innovation Director, Ramsay Santé Live Discussion  
Stephen Wells – CTO, Adaptix Imaging Live Discussion  
Susanne Katzler-Fuchs – CEO, Brimatech Services GmbH Live Discussion  


Session 3: Public Health Management

The third session on Public Health Management started with Gemma Kulk, Senior Scientists for Marine Environments at Plymouth Marine Laboratory, who presented how Earth Observation, in particular ocean and water observation, can prevent issues like waterborne diseases and natural disasters through the study of water quality levels. Then, Stefano Ferretti, Earth Observation Applications Engineer, introduced the ESA perspective on the topic.

Here the experts and start-ups who pitched during session 3.


Panel 3: Public Health Management

This panel was moderated by Julia Kubanek, Earth Observation Campaign Coordinator at ESA, who focused the discussion on the biggest opportunities and challenges for Earth Observation in the public health sector, in particular how Earth Observation can help the sector and how to improve the use of EO data in underestimated fields.

Here the participants of the panel.

Amy Campbell – PhD Researcher, University of Southampton Live Discussion  
Gerard Margarit Martín – Business Development Manager, Geospatial Services BD  Live Discussion  
Guy Hendrickx – CEO, Avia GIS Live Discussion  
Marcello Maranesi – CEO, GMATICS  Live Discussion  
Morgane Stempfelet – Health Geography Project Manager, French Public Health Agency  Live Discussion  



Luca Del Monte concluded the even highlighting the need of joining forces between Space and Health to produce lasting and relevant changes, improve the sectors and integrate them more and more.