BELS Special Prize and ESNC University Challenge 20172017-10-23T16:41:02+02:00



The BELS special prize addresses smart young entrepreneurs and researchers from South East Asia, who will gain the possibility to interact with European companies and research centres. Participation is strictly limited to citizens of the ASEAN countries (Vietnam, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, The Philippines, Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar, Brunei, Singapore). BELS is looking for innovative downstream applications based on GNSS/Galileo. The proposed ideas or solutions will be evaluated by a European panel of experts based on the following criteria:

  • Innovativeness of the idea
  • Relevance to GNSS/Galileo
  • Relevance to SEA society
  • Technological feasibility
  • Quality of the proposed solution
  • Prototype availability
  • Market potential

BELS Special Prize

  • A EUR 2.000 cash award to be used at the winners’ discretion
  • Incubation support of 6 months in a European incubator or research centre to refine the idea and possibly arrive to a prototype
  • A total budget of EUR 20.000 will be allocated to cover travel and living expenses of two people for a stay of at least 6 months

More information on the official website


BELS Challenge Winner

The winnner of the BELS Special Prize is the “ATTracT – Autism Trigger, Tracking and Trace” project from Malaysia, coordinated by Dr. Noordin Ahmad from the Malysian Space Agency ANGKASA. The project develop a system that uses GNSS-enabled devices to monitor the precise position of autistic children who have a propensity to wander.

Dr Noordin Ahmad, Ooi Wei Han, Shahrizal Ide Moslin, Helmi Kadir, Norhan Mat Yusoff, Muhammad Firdaus Mat Ghani

Every year, approximately 9,000 children in Malaysia are born with autism. Children with autism face challenges in terms of their communication skill, tendency to wander, and lack of safety awareness. The main idea of ATTracT is to develop a system that uses GNSS-enabled devices tailored to the needs of autistic children who have a propensity to wander. Parents will be provided with a system they can use on their mobile phones to track and monitor their children in real-time. The aim is to set up a defined movement zone (with virtual boundaries) that will be activated according to a daily schedule. Alerts will be sent immediately to parents’ smartphones if their child crosses a virtual boundary, and ATTracT can also store corresponding movement histories. In addition to mobile devices, a real-time monitoring system will also be set up to help schools or autism rehabilitation centres track the movement of the children under their supervision at the same time. The system will thus provide parents and autism centres with an effective and reliable method of monitoring children with autism.

Contact: noordin(at)

G. Povero, BELS Coordinator, and N. Ahmad from ANGKASA at the ESNC Awards Ceremony 2016 in Madrid, Spain.


ESNC UNIVERSITY CHALLENGE 2017: from the lecture hall to the board room

In 2017 BELS collaborated again with the ESNC for the ESNC UNIVERSITY CHALLENGE:

High-quality GNSS education is a driver of innovation, a means of enhancing companies’ competitiveness, and a valuable opportunity for international cooperation. To bridge the gap from GNSS research and academia to entrepreneurship, the ESNC University Challenge addresses students and research associates with a background in aerospace and GNSS-specific courses of study, in particular with the aim of fostering the transformation of bright ideas into commercial ventures.

In addition, the ESNC University Challenge seeks to reach out to any young researchers working in areas of potential applications, be they prospective automotive engineers, logistics providers, game and other mobile application developers, or health promoters. The competition heightens the exposure and credibility of student innovations on a global level while establishing links to the world of business. The evaluators will focus on creativity and market needs rather than the technological perfection of the business ideas submitted.

G. Povero from ISMB and J. Sanz Subirana from UPC joined other GNSS experts from European GNSS research centres, Universities and institutions to evaluate the submissions for the 2017 edition of the University Challenge. BELS team promoted the University Challenge in South East Asia during the one day workshops carried on in Asia, during workshops and other relevant meetings. BELS asian partners promoted the University Challenge in their own country exploiting their national contacts.

PRIZE 2017

  • 12 months of virtual incubation, technical and business consultancy support (a EUR 5,000 value) will be provided by the GNSS Research & Applications Centre of Excellence (GRACE).
  • The Institute of Space Technology and Space Applications of the Universität der Bundeswehr München will sponsor a ticket for the Munich Satellite Navigation Summit 2018.

The winners will be awarded at the European Space Week in Tallinn, Estonia on 7 November 2017.