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PUCRS the only Brazilian university joining Act in Space

Free event occurs in more than 70 cities around the world

11/11/2020 - 16h26

Have you ever thought about working with aerospace technologies and the ways in which you can apply it in everyday life? If you are interested or curious, do not miss the opportunity to join Act In Space, an event that will occur in over 70 cities around the world, which is patented by the European Space Agency (ESA), French Space Agency (CNES), among other technology companies. PUCRS is the only Brazilian university joining the event this year.

Act In Space is a unique opportunity for participants worldwide to work on creating business prospectives for the challenges by the use of patents, technologies and satellite data made available by CNES, ESA, Airbus and all our partners to create start-ups. The challenges are based on high-level technologies, which nevertheless are easy to re-use because they have been selected due to their potential for commercial applications.

The Brazilian leg will run from Nov 13 – 14, as an online 24-hour Hackathon. Participants will meet in groups consisting from 2 to 5 members to address challenges proposed by the event’s international organization. The winning team of this leg will move through to the international leg, which will also occur online later this year.

The 24-hour Program

The event starts at 6 PM on Nov 13 and ends on Nov 14, at 6 PM. Every stage of the event will occur online and participants will be mentored and supported by a team selected by IDEAR, PUCRS’ Institute for Research and Development, which organized the Hackaton at PUCRS. For Prof. Dr. Gabriela Kurtz, from the School of Communication, Arts and Design – FAMECOS, who is also a member of the event’s organizing committee, mentoring students and organizing the schedules will make the work involving the participating groups a lot easier.

“The mediation will be carried out through Zoom and Discord, as teams will be able to get together and have quick workshops and the presence of their mentors throughout the period of development of the project”, she highlights. The complete event schedule can be checked on the event’s official website.

Registration

The event is at no charge and is open to the public, but is conditioned to early registration. An important point is that, as it is a global event, it has materials that are entirely in English. On top of that, the presentation at the international leg must be in English. Therefore, it is desirable to have an intermediate level of English to enjoy all the possibilities that the event has to offer.

Challenges

The Hackathon consists of three challenges, and has a list of patents and resources that you can access on the website. The challenges are:

The 2018 edition

Winners of the national leg in the 2018 edition / Photo: Personal archive

School of Technology students Talles Feijó (Electrical Engineering), Jonathan Culau and Guilherme Rocha (Control and Automation Engineering) won the national leg of Act In Space 2018. They presented the project at the international leg in the city of Toulouse, France.

On the experience of participating in the event, Talles describes the process of creating the solution. “We were defining our idea step by step and taking advantage of the mentoring program. We used of the aerospace patents, and then we reserved it to be applied in some area. That was when we developed the solution to a problem”, he points out.

The group’s solution consisted of reducing the cost of certain processes through the use of stratospheric balloon satellites to monitor crops, thus reducing pest damage to the crops. The business model that was created was intended to make the product accessible to the low income small farmers to promote the democratization of technology. The 2018 edition featured 65 people who had joined 14 teams.