SpaceHack 2023 Recap

Canberra is a driving force behind Australia’s space industry and has been for decades. In 1969, the ACT was the receiver and worldwide distributor for televising the Apollo 11 mission during the Moon Landing. With world-leading research institutions like UNSW Canberra Space, ANU Institute for Space and infrastructure like Canberra Deep Space Communication Complex, Canberra is the perfect place for innovators to test and grow new ideas and solutions.

Introducing SpaceHack 2023! A two-day innovation challenge hosted by the Canberra Innovation Network (CBRIN) and in partnership with UNSW Canberra. Over two days, on 17 and 18 October 2023, six teams went head-to-head to win from a prize pool of $10,000. The teams were assisted by industry-leading experts and mentors, to help generate, evolve and pitch their out-of-this-world ideas to win the judges’ vote.

The challenge brought together teams of innovators to develop novel, innovative solutions in space technology and within the space industry. Participants were challenged to tackle the most pressing cybersecurity challenges facing space technology and discover ways to help keep space safe from cyberattacks.

The teams were guided by mentors like Dr. Craig Benson, Chief Innovation Officer at Skykraft, Dr. Lily Qiao, Senior Lecturer at UNSW Canberra Space, Dr. Andrew Sutton, Postdoctoral Fellow at NASA and many more.

Judging the event were a panel of industry experts: Prof. Anna Moore, Director of ANU InSpace, Dr. Christopher Capon, CEO at Nominal Systems and Prof. Ed Kruzins, Acting Director at UNSW Canberra Space.

First place was awarded to Abhi Veda and Rohan Daya, with their highly detailed space and cybersecurity insurance business “Vinsured”.

Coming in second was a team of three, Enling Liao, Lea Fallen and Lucy Roberts with “SatAssess”, a subscription-based business using online simulation to assess the potential risk of cyberattacks for new satellites.

In third place was Connor Kneebone, Nicholas (Magic) Mobbs, Scott Suter and Ting Wang with their all-in-one access management system “Beyond Thrust”.  Their idea provided a secure access management system to internal and external users, preventing cyberattacks on partners, including industry and academia, securely.

Through the combined impact of real-world skills acquisition, connections with industry experts and the $10,000 prize pool, the participating teams were able to advance their ideas in ways that would be nearly impossible in two days.

“The facilitators and speakers at Space Hack were outstanding. Their expertise and dedication shone through at every moment. They guided us through the event with clear instructions and unwavering support, making sure we had all the resources we needed to succeed. The guest speakers were not only informative but also inspiring, providing valuable insights into the space industry and its future. Their passion was contagious, and it motivated all participants to aim high and push their limits. Kudos to the Space Hack team for assembling such a talented group of facilitators and speakers!” – Rohan, Participant

With the participants’ innovative solutions and Canberra’s comprehensive space environment, there is no doubt that the 2023 SpaceHack participants will join the force of innovative Canberrans driving Australia’s space agenda.

Interested in participating in programs like this one? Book an intro meeting today!