UK-based space startup Open Cosmos has secured $50mn in a recent funding round to further its mission of using satellites to address environmental issues. The company leverages artificial intelligence (AI), sensors, and Earth Observation (EO) imagery to gather critical insights into climate change. These findings shed light on global temperature changes, greenhouse gas emissions, polar ice caps, sea level fluctuations, natural disasters, and deforestation, allowing scientists to develop effective damage mitigation programs.
Rafel Jordá Siquier, CEO and Founder of Open Cosmos, emphasizes that sustainability is at the core of the company’s mission. He believes that space data is the key to building a more resilient and sustainable world, enabling better understanding, prediction, and response to various challenges. By providing detailed global views and advanced data visualization tools, Open Cosmos empowers organizations worldwide to make informed decisions and drive changes that protect our planet.
One of Open Cosmos’ current satellites, Menut, was launched in January via a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket. Menut is designed to monitor deforestation, wildfires, floods, and coastal erosion. Open Cosmos plans to launch five more satellites by March 2024, each serving specific environmental monitoring purposes.
To maximize the benefits of these satellites, Open Cosmos offers the OpenConstellation platform, allowing organizations to access and share space data. This end-to-end service covers satellite design, build, and operation and aims to democratize access to space by reducing costs and simplifying processes.
Open Cosmos’ approach has attracted impact investors, with three of them leading the recent €50mn Series B funding round. These investors include the Environmental Technologies Fund, Trill Impact, and the A&G Energy Transition Tech Fund. Analysts predict that the EO satellite market will be worth $11.3 billion by 2031, suggesting potential financial returns for investors.
Jordá emphasizes the importance of stronger backing from the public sector, particularly in the UK. Government-funded projects are crucial to fuel innovation, support companies like Open Cosmos, and facilitate their journey from concept to commercialization.