This website uses cookies primarily for visitor analytics. Certain pages will ask you to fill in contact details to receive additional information. On these pages you have the option of having the site log your details for future visits. Indicating you want the site to remember your details will place a cookie on your device. To view our full cookie policy, please click here. You can also view it at any time by going to our Contact Us page.

Sir Martin Sweeting wins Lifetime Achievement Award

18 January 2010

Surrey Satellite Technology Limited (SSTL) founder and Surrey Space Centre director Sir Martin Sweeting has received a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Elektra Electronics Industry Awards 2009.

As a University graduate, Sir Martin challenged conventional space engineering by using commercially available electronics and parts to build small satellites.  After securing a "piggy back" launch for his first test satellite with NASA and launching several successful satellites under the University of Surrey, in 1985 Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd was formed to service the clear need for more affordable access to space throughout the World.

Sir Martin's vision is to change the economics of space.  His work and determination has enabled countries such as Algeria, Nigeria and Malaysia to establish rewarding space programs, developed a new market for small but advanced satellites, and provided more innovative and cost effective solutions for established space giants such as the United States, Russia, China and Europe. 

In 2005, the Galileo test satellite GIOVE-A encompassed Sir Martin's vision; its fresh approach delivering a vital European mission on-time and on budget to secure Europe's entry into global navigation and timing services .  As a result, on the 7th January , SSTL captured its most significant contract, worth more than £200m from the European Commission to manufacture 14 Galileo satellite navigation payloads in partnership with German company OHB-System. 

"These are very exciting times for UK space.  The Government is gradually recognising the commercial success and importance of our industry - for the first time we will soon have a UK Space Agency and  a new ESA facility at Harwell.  However, we must not get left behind as the rest of the world understands the benefits of space - the UK has special skills and capabilities that can contribute to the exploration of Moon and Mars within a sensible budget."

Sir Martin is not a man to sit back and wait.  Plans are already under way for SSTL and the Surrey Space Centre to take Britain to the Moon, the culmination of 10 year's work developing the scientific mission MoonLITE which plans to put satellite "orbiters" around the Moon carrying not only scientific instruments but also paving the way for commercial communications and navigation services for future manned lunar bases. 

As a leading authority on satellite technology recognised in NASA, ESA and around the world, Sir Martin is an avid supporter and ambassador of the industry.  He is also an active member of the Government's new Space Innovation and Growth Team (IGT) improving awareness and the promotion of skills and development to support the industry.

In receiving the award, Sir Martin said "it is particularly gratifying to receive recognition from the electronics industry across Europe - it is their products that have enabled us to transform access to space."

Contact Details and Archive...

Print this page | E-mail this page