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Space Enterprise Lab opens in Wrexham University’s OpTIC Technology Centre

A Space Enterprise Lab which will support the growth of the space sector across the UK has officially opened at the OpTIC Technology Centre, located at Prifysgol Wrecsam/Wrexham University’s St Asaph campus.

Image courtesy Wrexham University / SELS

The lab, which will provide users with the latest collaborative technology, resources and expertise, officially opened on Wednesday – the latest addition to the Satellite Applications Catapult’s countrywide network.

The new Space Enterprise Lab provides a range of essential capabilities for space sector companies and innovators, enabling them to work together more effectively. It is part of a linked network of 14 such facilities around the UK which are responding to the way in which businesses and organisations now work.  

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The Space Enterprise Lab will provide an innovative service by facilitating the virtual delivery of meetings, business sprints, user engagement spark sessions and other services such as virtual whiteboards and built-in video conferencing, for everyone within the UK space sector to use.

Based on the St Asaph Business Park, OpTIC Technology Centre is a unique business and technology centre owned and operated by Wrexham University. It links research and development, industry and academia and has a proven track record in providing technology companies with high-quality facilities and a community spirit to grow and develop their business.  
 
OpTIC Technology Centre also specialises in innovative optical systems, product development, engineering and technology consulting – and has developed cutting-edge technology with an unparalleled array of highly specialist equipment and laboratory space.  

The launch of the Space Enterprise Lab at OpTIC Technology Centre will facilitate collaborative work and engagement between organisations in North Wales and South Wales, where Newport’s lab was launched in June 2023.

Professor Caroline Gray OBE, Director of OpTIC Technology Centre, said: “We are delighted to be launching a Space Enterprise Lab to support the growth of the space sector across the UK.  

“These unique facilities embrace the new hybrid way in which we all now engage, fostering UK-wide space innovation and discussion. We are enabling businesses across the UK to collaborate across high-innovation subjects, to develop ideas, explore new products and engage with customers more effectively.”  

Professor Richard Day, Pro Vice Chancellor for Research at Wrexham University, said: "We are excited to be hosting the first Space Enterprise Lab in North Wales.  We thank Satellite Applications Catapult for the opportunity to collaborate on this project.  This is an excellent facility for individuals and companies to explore the growing world of space technologies, applications and services."   

Dr Nafeesa Dajda, Director of National Capabilities at the Satellite Applications Catapult, added: “We are delighted to be launching the new Space Enterprise Lab at the OpTIC Technology Centre to fully connect Space Wales to our space ecosystem. The UK’s vibrant space sector is active in every part of the country, and this lab will encourage collaboration between innovative organisations as they reimagine how we use satellite technology and create new applications to solve our biggest global challenges.”

The Space Enterprise Labs (SEL) is a vital component of the UK Space Ecosystem (UKSE) in partnership with the UK Space Agency.  
 
SEL operates within the broader UKSE community, linking innovators, investors, academic institutions, and industry partners in the space sector. It sits alongside of the Space Enterprise Community (SEC), an online platform designed to facilitate collaboration, user-friendliness, and centralised access for the UK space industry.  
 
As part of the UK Space Ecosystem, SEL plays a pivotal role, connecting various organisations and individuals across the UK. Its development was driven by the National Capabilities and Cluster Team's extensive research, addressing challenges raised by colleagues nationwide.

 

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