Machine Learning Use Case Programme

Accelerating the adoption of AI technologies within the UK Space sector

As part of its Innovation strategy, at the Satellite Applications Catapult we have been accelerating the transformation of the UK Space industry through the adoption of Artificial Intelligence technologies. This applies across the Catapult’s main technology value streams: Ubiquitous Connectivity (leveraging SatCom technologies), GeoInformation (leveraging Earth Observation data), and Access to Space (manufacturing and launch of small satellites).


Accelerating the adoption of AI relies on four main activities:

  • Raise awareness: participate in conferences, competitions, or create case-studies.
  • Build an ecosystem: identify user-challenges and solve them using AI expertise found in start-ups or academia matched with EO expertise.
  • Build toolsets: identify existing, create and share platforms and data sources.
  • Trigger funding: influence funding bodies to generate appropriate calls, capture funding opportunities (commercial R&D budget, public grants).

How the Programme is Funded

The Satellite Applications Catapult received funding from InnovateUK to procure commercial imagery sets to be leveraged within the programme for the following purposes:

  • Enable demonstration use-cases with challenge owners by removing the cost of imagery from equation for pre-commercial R&D.
  • Boost the interest and participation of AI specialists to Geoinformation challenges by providing them with a range of labelled training data.
  • Ensure dissemination of the findings into the wider community.