Third edition of #HelloSpace contest spotlighting innovation

Organized by the Innovation Cluster, the third #HelloSpace contest will take place this year on July 6 and 7 in Bra, about an hour from Turin. The aim is to stimulate our innovation culture and foster the emergence of initiatives, concepts and procedures that will accelerate the development of disruptive projects within the company.


#HelloSpace: race to disruption

This contest should attract about 70 participants, all Thales Alenia Space employees. They will be divided into 12 teams, and have two days to come up with new ideas that can be applied to current and future projects, around an open-ended theme.


Innovation Cluster: an innovation accelerator and catalyzer at the heart of Thales Alenia Space’s strategy

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Thales Alenia Space takes a proactive and participative approach to encourage all employees to unleash their creative energy – no matter where they fit in our organization.

The Innovation Cluster opened its first Innovation Center in 2015 to support a company-wide culture of innovation. It also organizes cross-functional and collaborative workshops dedicated to the resolution of specific problems, ideation sessions, design thinking, conferences, and hackathons, to mention just a few.  


The contest

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Teams of five or six will start with a blank sheet of paper to come up with ideas that address the short, medium and long-term challenges of space. By using this type of open-ended format, the Innovation Cluster seeks to unleash participants’ creativity and push back the traditional bounds of what is possible. Isn’t freedom the very essence of creative thinking? While the #HelloSpace event is deliberately open-ended for ideas, it is also carefully planned. Participants come from different countries reflecting the European makeup of Thales Alenia Space. #HelloSpace 3 will span the company’s spectrum of businesses and areas of expertise. Furthermore, the teams are deliberately formed to be heterogeneous, to ensure cultural diversity, multidisciplinary and intergenerational skills, and unbridled creativity. During these two days, #HelloSpace 3 will be definitely at the crossroads of innovation!


What’s ahead?

Through this contest, participants will be trying to conceive the scenarios that represent tomorrow’s space market. In a sense, we’re asking them to be Leonardo de Vinci Junior, capable of imagining the future.

It’s fascinating to think of the futuristic ideas they may brainstorm during this friendly competition: space tourism, advanced space-based or other applications, mining materials other planets for use on Earth… and much more! All ideas are welcome, provided they are disruptive… and feasible! Sharing a vision, showing that it can be put into practice and that it’s viable for the long term… that’s the ultimate aim of the Innovation Cluster, via this contest.
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The approach summarized by “think big, act small” has already proven its mettle. Who would have believed that people would one day walk on the moon, that space probes would explore the distant reaches of the Universe, and that space tourism will shortly be a reality? But each of these seemingly crazy ventures started one day with an idea… An idea that seemingly comes from nowhere, resembles no other, and turns out to have a touch of genius. It’s this kind of entrepreneurship that the Innovation Cluster seeks to foster via events such as hackathons and the #HelloSpace contest.  

Three awards will be handed out on July 7: the Jury Award for the best project, the Best Pitch award, and the Public Award, chosen by all participants.


“You say Goodbye and I say #HelloSpace”

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You have undoubtedly understood by now that #HelloSpace is an amicable contest designed to accelerate innovation and entrepreneurial innovations within Thales Alenia Space. It also aims to inculcate a veritable culture of innovation inside the company. An initiative such as #HelloSpace offers highly fertile ground to nurture the disruptive concepts that will shape tomorrow’s space sector.

Innovation Cluster, additive manufacturing, augmented reality, robots and cobots, Stratobus™, Factory 4.0, the Internet of Things… The word Innovation may be overused these days, but more than ever, innovation itself is really coming into its own at Thales Alenia Space!

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