Countdown to the next Spacehack (16-17 June 2022)!

30 hours to develop an innovative idea
Access a diverse pool of expert mentors
Motivating prizes for the winning teams

2021 SPACEHACK Supporters

Competition for diverse teams of innovators excited by space, space technologies, innovation and entrepreneurship. Exceptional collaborative atmosphere with access to leading mentors and space companies with short workshops that help participants generate, evolve and pitch ideas to win the vote of the judges. Spacehack 2021 was made possible by the Embassy of the United States of America  in Australia who sponsored the event to help enable transcontinental collaboration in space industries.

2021SPACEHACK winners

On the judging night of 18 June 2021, the team "Ultra Light Cells", formed of entrepreneurs and ANU graduates, have taken the top prize for their innovative use of Perovskite solar cells in space. During his pitch, Ben Wilkinson from Ultra Light Cells team, told the judges that use of this technology could reduce solar cell mass used in satelites by up to 99%, saving money and increasing power available in space. The team held 17 conversations with customers and experts during the two days to validate feasibility of the idea.    

The second place was taken by a team of researchers, graduates and lecturers from UNSW Canberra, ANU and University of Canberra (team SONUS) who came up with a novel way to carry out spinal degradation diagnostics on astronauts and the third place was taken by 1st year ANU students who came up with a novel way to filter water in space without the use of chemicals. The judges have also awarded a special prize on the night for Imagination to a team of Year 12 students from the CIT, who proposed to use "slime" to capture undetacteble micro-debris in collective orbit cleanup efforts. The judges appreciated all 10 submissions and final pitches and the effort the teams have put in ideation, validation and presenting their ideas. 

2nd place: SONUS
3rd place: LUNAR ORBITER
Imagination prize: TEAM MARTIANS

SPACEHACK Judging Criteria

Teams need to score high in seven criteria plus add something extra to the mix. Judges are looking for innovative and impactful solutions that are validated, viable, have clear sight of funding, excellent pitch and leverage collaboration.

Secret sauce

2021 SPACEHACK Challenge Streams

Upstream challenge

How can an existing or emerging technology or process be applied in space to create new value?

Downstream challenge

How can a space technology or discovery be applied in a novel way to create value and impact on earth?

2021 SPACEHACK Mentors

SpaceHack Mentors came from different fields within the space industry, research and governance and with a unique mix or expecriences, expertise and connections available to the participant teams.  

Jeremy Hallett

CEO & Managing Diretcor, Clearbox Systems (Satellite Communications and Space Domain Awareness).  Director of the Space Industry Association of Australia, angel investor and mentor at the Moonshot Space Accelerator.

Trevor Lafleur

Principal engineer at ThrustMe, a French deep-tech company that provides propulsion systems for satellites, where he performs R&D, product development and space mission analysis. PhD in plasma physics (ANU). 

Kate Ferguson

Business development manager (Advanced Communications and Space Situational Awareness), ANU Institute for Space. PhD in quantum physics. Bridging the world of research and government / industry.

Andrew Sutton

ANU, Centre for Gravitational Astrophysics Formerly, Laser specialist at NASA JPL (Pasadena, CA), Sensor Architect at Apple Inc (CA). Co-founder of Canberra-based test & measurement startup, Liquid Instruments

Christopher Capon

CEO, Space Services Australia, Research Fellow, UNSW Canberra Space. Advanced simulation architecture, rocket simulations for Google Lunar X prize teams, HPC plasma simulation. Winner: the Australian Space Industry Awards 2021 "Rising Star of the Year"


Courtney Bright

Flight operations lead at UNSW Canberra - planning, testing, and executing the operations of UNSW Canberra Space missions. Experience: BRMM, M1, M2 Pathfinder, and M2 missions. PhD in spacecraft propulsion.

Brenton Smith

Founder, Space Services Australia, innovative spacecraft-centred digital twin simulations.Breadth of experience in pitching, raising capital, building a dreamteam, structuring deals, developing a sophisticated product.

Samantha Clark

Management consultant, PwC, 20 years experience across federal government: policy, decision-making, transfor-mation planning, change management, stakeholder engagement, communications, risk and assurance.

Zachary Sequoia

Innovation Leader at 12th Level. Solves complex problems within the Space and Defence Industry. Previously working with global companies including, LinkedIn, Nike, Logitech, Cisco, Cadbury, leading universities and various state and federal government departments. Startup mentor and advisor. 

Jasminder Hayer

Aerospace & Satellites Solutions Architect, AWS. Helps customers in the Asia-Pacific & Japan region build solutions for the space industry. This involves anything from building satellites to using satellite data to solve challenges like wild fire monitoring, climate change and tracking what’s flying overhead. 

Yasmin Zaman

UNSW graduate with a dual degree in Aerospace Engineering and Neuro-science. UAV Pilot & UAV Educator. Formerly, US Consulate General Sydney Youth Advisory Council Member, Student Ambassador at UNSW Engineering. Incredibly passionate about diversity in STEM & human spaceflight. 

Richard Everson

Growth Facilitator with the Commonwealth Government's Entrepreneurs' Programme since 2015. A career that spans operational and executive roles, and start-ups. Focussed on strategy, customers and markets, operations, and control systems.

2021 SpaceHack Judges

Imogen Rea

Assistant Manager, Australian Space Agency, Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources, past President Australian Youth Aerospace Association

Dr Michael Frater

Independent consultant, Lead, Canberra Cyber Hub, former Rector, UNSW Canberra, former Director, Skykraft, former Director, CBRIN 

Ingrid McCarthy

Chief Operating Officer, ASTRO3D (the ARC Centre of Excellence for All Sky Astrophysics in 3 Dimensions), former Manager, Inspiring Australia at CBRIN 

Frequently Asked Questions

Who is behind SpaceHack?

SpaceHack is delivered by the Canberra Innovation Network in partnership with and thanks to a generous sponsorship of the United States of America Embassy in Canberra. The core SpaceHack team is supported by many organisations ambitious about the space industry.

Do I have to register as a team?

Yes, you apply to register as  a team. To participate in SpaceHack you must be in a registered team of between 3 and 5 people. We will allow a six person team as an absolute maximum.

How much time do I have to commit?

SpaceHack will run over two-days with mandatory sessions throughout. Thursday 17th June and Friday 18th June. The times will be between 8:30 am and 5:30 pm.

I am already working on a an idea. Can I use that?

Teams are more than welcome to compete in the hackathon with an existing idea that they are already working on, but will need to be willing to learn and grow their proposed solution.
The workshops and mentor sessions are designed to push teams to test and refine their solution to develop a compelling final pitch for the judges. During a hackathon, ideas may pivot or shift based on customer and mentor feedback which is all a part of the process!

Who owns the ideas?

All submissions to the hackathon remain the intellectual property of the individuals or organisations who developed them. The organisers claim no ownership of nor repsonsibility for the IP generated during the hackathons. It is up to the teams to deal with IP issues.

Is this an in person event?

Yes. All of the sessions will be run in-person at the Canberra Innovation Network located at Level 5, 1 Moore Street, Canberra. Make sure you comply with building entrance requirements. We bear no responsibility for situations when you are not allowed in the building - you will have to connect with your team virtually from another location.


Do you want to mentor, sponsor and support the 2022 SpaceHack? Do you want to build a team and take part in it?


“CBRIN's Space Hackathon 2021 was a fantastic opportunity that I would encourage anyone in STEM or interested in space to try out. Even if you don't walk away with a prize, talking and learning from mentors who are experts or leaders in their respective fields alongside the creative, problem-solving thinking the challenge asks of you are invaluable experiences. It is clear the organising team behind the hackathon have put a lot of effort into it, which is shown in how enjoyable the experience is.”

Jeffrey Liang
ANU student, participant

"The Hackathon really opened people’s eyes to the opportunities in space. Was very well run and gave people the opportunity to make networks in the space industry."

Imogen Rea
Department of Industry, Scicence, Energy and Resources / Australian Space Agency, 2021 SpaceHack Judge

“Participating in the CBR innovation network space hack was fun and made  a real impact on my life. I learned more about space in two days than I had ever imagined. I gained valuable design thinking and pitching skills that I will use in my everyday life and I joined a network of like-minded entrepreneurial thinkers that I will stay connected with and will assist me in my future endeavours. Thanks, CBRIN, you are a vital link in the CBR innovation space.“

Dale Rogers
Service Designer, SpaceHack2021 participant

I enjoyed how the teams were encouraged to come up with interesting and unique solutions. As a mentor, it was amazing to see how much growth was achieved by the teams over the two days.

Yasmin Zaman
UAV Pilot, UNSW Graduate - engineering & neuroscience

SpaceHack in the Media

"Space geeks will have 30 hours to develop and pitch their innovative ideas to a pool of industry experts during Canberra’s first SpaceHack competition."

“Hackathons are innovation playgrounds; they are set up to encourage you to ideate, explore, experiment, fail, learn and change. And then, repeat.” 

2021 Spacehack Report

We acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the ACT, the Ngunnawal people. We acknowledge and respect their continuing culture and the contribution they make to the life of this city and this region.

Level 5, 1 Moore St
Canberra,  2601, ACT

Open from 9:00 AM TO 5:00 PM


 © 2021. CBR Innovation Network Limited

2021 Spacehack Report

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