Viasat Beyond: Space

Our STEM innovation program supports the next generation of UK engineers, artists, space lovers, and scientists in understanding, embracing, and supporting safe and sustainable space — by harnessing new and creative ideas around policy, practice, and technology.  Congratulations to our 2024 winner Ash Goldsmith, our five finalists — and all our participants!

The competition

When we think of sustainability, we often think of our environment, our resources, and our planet. But with the launch of satellites in space on the rise, it’s time to take sustainability further than ever before — from the space around us to the space above us. 


Year 12 and 13 students (working solo or in groups of 1-3) across the UK participated, with a special focus on students from under-served areas of the UK.


Each of the three phases of the program asked for a concrete deliverable that addressed the theme of space sustainability. Every round's deliverable became more specific and robust, expanding on the previous round. 


Five teams were selected from Phase 2 to continue to the finals, where each received an all-expense paid trip to London and was matched with two Viasat employees who acted as mentors to help the students with their final presentation.


A contribution toward graduate studies , mentorships, and more

First through third prize winners received cash prizes and Viasat mentorships; two runners up received mentorships (terms apply).


All Viasat Beyond: Space winners and runners up were invited to an all-expenses-paid experiential learning week at Viasat's European headquarters in London, where they learned and participated in a range of space-related experiences, got to know engineers who are at the top of their field, and got a behind-the-scenes look at one of the world's largest space communications companies.


Viasat Sustainable Space Experience Week is an excellent opportunity for students to gain experience in the sector, build relationships, and gain an edge on their CVs. 

The results

The goal of Viasat Beyond: Space is to support the next generation in understanding, embracing, and supporting safe and sustainable space through harnessing new and creative ideas in the areas of policy, design, and technology. We used a holistic approach throughout the program to ensure it was inclusive and would engage a diverse talent pipeline.

Five finalists for Viasat''s Beyond Space competition in our London, UK offices

Engaging a diverse pipeline

Before we could engage with students, we saw a need to make sure this program could be inclusive and equitable to all. We did this by ensuring students would have equitable access to any software or platforms needed to participate in this competition, third-party judging for Phase 1 and Phase 2 submissions, and connecting with a diverse set of schools, teachers, and career professionals to inform them and their students of this program. In October, we conducted outreach to over 2,700 schools across the UK.


Student demographics:

  • 56% of students identify as female and 42% identify as male
  • 21% of students participate in a Free School Meals program
  • 47% of students will be first-generation university students
  • 10% of students identify as having special educational needs or a disability

Congratulations to our finalists and 2024 winner Ash Goldsmith — and all of our participants

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