Milton Keynes driving sustainable economic impact through Catapult’s satellite-based applications

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The Satellite Applications Catapult, working in partnership with Milton Keynes (MK) Council and The Open University, has successfully developed a series of satellite-based applications to aid the Council in delivering more effective and efficient services.

The geodata service platform within the MK Data Hub – which was launched yesterday – is designed to engage business and innovation of all scales, enabling users to publish, view and interact with geodata about Milton Keynes.

The Data Hub is part of a major collaborative initiative called MK:Smart that will drive sustainable economic impact locally. The Hub will host a large number of applications and data that foster regional innovation to drive market growth through data reuse. Data and services derived from satellite imagery and aerial photography provide a macro level view of a region, influencing decisions on everything from Planning and Energy to Ecosystem Services and Transport.

Amongst the innovative services developed by the Catapult is one that provides a property-by-property analysis of the potential to install rooftop solar panels, including a cost-benefit estimate for each installation. Another – a Ground Source Heat Pump (GSHP) application will provide an assessment at household level of the potential to install GSHP systems – which extract heat from the ground – and a cost-benefit analysis model for each installation.

Satellite Applications Catapult CEO, Stuart Martin, said: “Having worked with MK Council for the past two years, it’s incredibly exciting for the first phase of the MK Data Hub to be launched.

“The applications we’ve built, in partnership with The Open University and some specialist SMEs, are unique and have the potential for significant impact in Milton Keynes as part of its smart city programme. They are further evidence of the Catapult and UK satellite industry’s growing expertise in application development, and clearly demonstrate the sustainability and commercial opportunities available.” MK:Smart Project Director, Professor Enrico Motta, added: “While the MK Data Hub is technically about acquiring and storing data relevant to city systems, its main purpose is to provide a resource to both business and academia which can enable data-driven innovation.”