Clean Space Student Competition

The 3rd Clean Space Industrial Days, to be held 24-27 October at ESTEC, The Netherlands, will provide an insight to the technological advancement achieved to date in the fields of EcoDesign for space, technologies for Space Debris Mitigation (SDM) and Active Debris Removal (ADR).

The objective of Clean Space is to “guarantee the future of space activities by protecting the environment”. Clean Space consists in three major branches presented in the infographic below.

Clean Space branches

  • EcoDesign

In order to help solving the global environmental challenges on Earth, Clean Space is leading projects to reshape the space industry with greener technologies and materials. EcoDesign seeks to take advantage of the Life Cycle Assessment tools – developed to measure environmental characteristics and impacts of industrial products – to quantify the effects of space missions and apply ecodesign throughout their whole life cycle.   

Check out Clean Space blog for more information about EcoDesign !

  • Cleansat

We must stop polluting before cleaning, otherwise efforts are pointless. The objective of CleanSat is to mature technologies that will reduce the increment on the population of debris in the future. The Clean Space initiative is developing state-of-the-art satellites technologies to tackle several issues such as break-ups. For this, engineers are studying  passivation methods (reducing at most the energy level contained in batteries and tanks) and very peculiar designs which intend to facilitate the early reentry of satellites at the end of life and make them demise when re-entering the atmosphere.

Check out Clean Space blog for more information about Cleansat !

  • e.Deorbit (Active Debris Removal)

The debris population would keep growing even if all space launches were halted tomorrow. As the number of individual items of debris increases, further collisions are bound to follow. The most effective way to stave off this chain reaction and stabilise the debris population in key orbits is to remove large items of debris from space.

 In order to reduce the debris production, future space tugs will have to reach debris, capture, and accompany them back to Earth in a controlled manner. Several prototypes are currently under study such as capture nets, harpoons and robotic arms. e.Deorbit is the most ambitious mission Clean Space is carrying at the moment. Spoilers! A mission demonstration is expected for 2024, when a space tug would use a robotic arm to deorbit a big debris from space.

Check out Clean Space blog for more information about e.Deorbit !

Would you like to attend the Clean Space Industrial days and discover our activities?

If you are interested in our activities, you are a European student and you want to come to ESTEC to attend the conference this is your opportunity!

Clean Space team members netting a satellite

For this special occasion, Clean Space proposes to interested and motivated students to participate in our competition. You can do it by sending us a short text (maximum 500 words) to answer the following question:

  • How can you reduce the environmental impact of a space mission?

Proposals will be evaluated on their originality and relevance to the topic. Also, to have the best chance to succeed in this competition, students are encouraged to browse the Clean Space blog where they will find suitable articles about the activities. 

The winner will be invited to the event in ESTEC (The Netherlands) and costs incurred for attending the conference will be reimbursed (travel expenses and hotel), up to a maximum value of €1000. On top of that, the best answers will be published on our blog alongside an article dedicated to the competition. It is a good opportunity for you to be read by members of the space community!

To validate their participation, the students must come from an EU and/or ESA Member State, be enrolled in a bachelor or master degree or preparing a PHD and provide:

  • CV
  • Proof of student registration for year 2017/2018 
  • Answer to the question (500 words) in PDF format

Papers submissions should be send by email to  no later than the 2nd of October at  18:00 with the following object format [NAME_StudentCompetition].

The winner will be contacted by the Clean Space team on the 11th of October. 

Good luck to everyone!



  • Katerina says:

    Hello, i attend a greek university and we still have exams so enrolments for the year 2017/2018 have not been started yet. If i want to enter the competition what document should i send?

    • Jessica says:

      Dear Katerina,
      A proof of your 2016/2017 student registration will be sufficient then. Please simply remind us in your email that the 2017/2018 enrollments has not started yet in your university. Good luck !

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