Garage48 SpaceTech 2019

When 3-5 May, 2019

Where Tartu Observatory, Estonia

  • Overview
  • Agenda
  • Get Ready
  • Pre-events

  • Space is closer than you think.

    Many common everyday services such as weather forecasting, remote sensing, GPS systems and satellite television rely on space infrastructure. What will the future bring?

    Garage48 SpaceTech 2019 invites engineers, developers, marketers, designers, data scientists, project managers and field practitioners to explore the possibilities of space technology and create a working solution in just 48 hours.

    No previous experience needed - take it as a chance to learn about the magical world of space technology. You can come with or without an idea.   It’s your chance to learn about spacetech, make our everyday lives better and create technological solutions that our future relies on.

    And this time, the sky is not a limit. You can build some serious hardware, create a data-based solution or a space education project. There will be separate tracks for hardware and software projects and at the end of the weekend, two winners will be selected.

    We’ll help you to form a team and give you tools, equipment and materials to make your wildest space-related ideas happen. During the hackathon, you will be fed the yummiest and mentored by technical and business development mentors from the space industry.

    It’s always impossible until it's done.


    Get your tickets via


    The event will be held in Tartu Observatory. You can accommodate at the floor space at the venue, so pack your mattress, sleeping bag and towel with you and be ready for an adventure! 🚀


    Free participant buses are going to the venue from Tallinn, Tartu and Riga and back.

    Registration for the buses via


    You're welcome to attend the event on Facebook to stay informed! All the participants get access to our secret Facebook group where we share up-to-date info with you and give you tips for better performance.


    We'll hold 3 pre-events for (potential) hackathon participants to learn more about trends and needs in the space industry, find your first teammates, get some datasets and insights on using them.

    📍 RIGA – Monday, 29th April at Riga Technical University
    📍 VENTSPILS – Tuesday, 30th April at Ventspils University College
    📍 TARTU – Thursday, 2nd May at SPARK HUB

    Learn more about the pre-events here!


    SpaceTech hackathon is followed by Garage48 SpaceTech Bootcamp on 29th May to 2nd June in Tartu. 

    It's a 5-day intensive course that consists of teamwork, intensive mentoring, hands-on lectures and inspirational talks. The goal is to validate your business idea with real customers, finish your MVP (minimum viable product) and get your team ready to pitch for investors.

    Read more here!

    The event is financed by European Regional Development Fund, sTARTUp HUB, Heliocentric Technologies Latvia and Ventspils University College.

    Garage48 has a flexible schedule, but we do have some key activities that need to be planned ahead. Here is our tentative schedule, at least you know when to show up ;)

    Friday, 3rd May

    17:30 - Check-in, networking & snacks

    18:00 - Opening remarks

    18:30 - Pitching ideas in 90"

    19:30 - Refreshment Break

    19:50 - Pitching ideas in 90"

    20:45 - Team formation

    22:00 - Team work begins!

    Saturday, 4th May

    09:00 - Breakfast. Development continues

    10:00 - Checkpoint #1

    11:00 - Mentoring round starts

    13:00 - Lunch

    14.00 - Pitch drill introduction

    18:00 - Checkpoint #2. Development continues...

    19:00 - Dinner  

    20:00 - Development continues

    Sunday, 5th May

    09:00 - Breakfast. Development continues

    10:00 - Checkpoint #3

    11:00 - Pitch drill session #1

    13:00 - Lunch

    14:00 - Pitch drill session #2

    15:30 - CLEAN-UP

    16:00 - Refreshment break

    17:30 - Finale. Pitching session.

    18:30 - Refreshment break and the Jury takes the time to select winners

    19:00 - Award ceremony, networking & clean-up

    20:30 - Buses leave for Tallinn and Riga

    NB! The schedule is tentative, changes are possible and likely to happen.

    Doors open on Friday at 17:30. Please come on time, as the registration process might take some time - use it to get to know the crowd and to network.  See the agenda for further information.


    Positive attitude, an open mind and lots of energy! Everything you need for rapid product development. For hardware prototypes we will have equipment and materials on site, but to be sure, we recommend you to bring your own stuff as well. You never know when you need something yourself or if you could help out another team. Sharing is caring :)

    The fact is that if you build something which really works on Sunday evening, then we will not ask the bits and pieces back - you don't have to break your prototype, the team can take the prototype home and continue working on it. This does not apply, though, for more expensive things - you can not take an oscilloscope with you or set of tweezers etc.

    Please take your:

    • laptop
    • 3-5m power extension cord (as power might be at a distance),
    • mobile phone
    • all chargers
    • mattress, sleeping bag and towel.


    Ideas are presented based on "elevator-pitch" method within 90 seconds. Event host and the audience can ask 1 to 3 short questions. You can prepare 1 (one) PDF slide to support your pitch. You should send the slide by Friday, May 3rd by 13.00, at the e-mail (Subject: name of your project).

    Consider the following key points:

    • Describe briefly your background (10 sec)
    • What is the name of the idea (5 sec)
    • What's the idea all about? What is the problem your idea solves? To which issues it draws attention? Target user count and description if applicable. (30 sec)
    • Technical solution and if there is a revenue model (in case of non-profit idea, how the maintenance and further development costs will be covered?) (30 sec)
    • Minimum viable product and plan for 48 hours. Who do you need for the team? (20 sec)

    NB! Practice your pitch to your friends or family before you present! 90 seconds goes really fast!


    After pitching is over, we will put all the ideas on the wall. Every participant will choose their favorite idea and this is how teams will be formed. Usually, 12 to 18 best ideas will get enough interested people to get the "green light" for the implementation.

    The average team has about 5 to 7 people and the team should be "balanced" - covering all required roles like necessary engineers, designer and marketer in order to get the product/service ready in 48 hours! Minimum size for a team is 5 people and max is 9 people.

    If some ideas get too few people or not a balanced team (probably unable to build the service), the idea will be dumped. But don’t worry, just choose another idea/team to join.


    After forming the teams, organizers will give a room/space for every team for the weekend. You should start by dividing roles, setting the product vision, customer journey and start working right away. It is very important that you have a project manager (team lead) in the team - one of the tasks is to keep the focus of the team, one eye on the clock and the other on the team progress. 48 hours is a really short time.


    We provide breakfast, lunch and dinner on Saturday and Sunday and a 24/7 snacks and refreshments corner at the venue. So you could focus on work and building your product.


    We have arranged mentors to work with the teams throughout the weekend. Some of them are more technical, some more business savvy. Be open and ask for their advice and contacts.

    Please wear your name badge during the whole event, except when working with power tools and machines, this will help to encourage networking and gets you past the security guards. Otherwise, be open, get to know new people, share your ideas and give ideas/feedback to other teams.

    MOST IMPORTANT - have fun!

    Time to start preparing! 🚀

    Before Garage48 SpaceTech 2019, we'll have 3 pre-events to learn more about trends and needs in the space industry, find your first teammates, get some datasets and insights on using them.

    📍 RIGA – Monday, 29th April at Riga Technical University (Ķīpsalas 2, Room 117)
    📍 VENTSPILS – Tuesday, 30th April at Ventspils University College (Ventspils University of Applied Sciences Students Lounge, D building, floor 0)
    📍 TARTU – Thursday, 2nd May at SPARK HUB (Narva mnt 3, Tartu)

    RIGA and VENTSPILS pre-events are focusing on industry TRENDS, NEEDS & IDEATION.

    During the event, Mr. Pauls Irbiņš will introduce you the general trends and needs in the space industry, covering 4 most relevant space-related topics:

    1) earth observation
    2) living and healthcare
    3) robotics
    4) education and Entertainment

    The talk is followed by an idea brainstorming in groups. After that, groups will present their ideas and we help them to identify what is the additional research or preparation needed before the hackathon.

    Pre-event in TARTU is focusing on DATA.

    It's a data workshop "What can a Monkey get out of satellite navigation data?" organized together with ESA BIC Estonia. Researchers and companies will talk about remote sensing and its practical applications - and also give you an overview of available satellite data sets and how to use them.


    Register for pre-events:
    Attend the event on Facebook:



    The Mentors 

    Kai Isand
    Pitch Coach and Host at Garage48; CEO @ Eventornado
    Andris Slavinskis
    Postdoctoral Researcher at Aalto University, Senior Researcher at University of Tartu
    Kimmo Isbjornssund
    Manager at ESA Business Incubation Centre Finland
    Sven Lilla
    Project Manager at ESA BIC Estonia, Business Development Services Coordinator at Tartu Science Park
    Martijn Leinweber
    Community Manager at SBIC Noordwijk
    Pätris Halapuu
    Co-founder of Crystalspace, software architecture and development
    Alexander Kmoch
    Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellow for Hydro-Geoinformatics at the University of Tartu
    Pauls Irbins
    Board Member at Heliocentric Technologies Latvia
    Aleks Koha
    CEO at Promoty & TitanGrid
    Ivo Remmelg
    Venture Partner at Superhero Capital, Board Member at EstBAN, and
    Kadri Bussov
    Legal Advisor at SECURITYMADEIN.LU
    Indrek Rebane
    CTO at Hedgehog Electronics Engineering
    Marelle Ellen
    Chief Marketing Officer at Promoty
    Tanel Reino
    Brand Manager / Senior Graphics Designer at Nortal
    Maria Laanejärv
    UX/UI Designer at Nortal
    Mari Allik
    Engineer at University of Tartu
    Viljo Allik
    Lead Engineer at Tartu Observatory
    Matis Averin
    3D Specialist at SPARK Makerlab
    Joonas Soone
    Laser Specialist (laserdaja) at SPARK Makerlab
    Mait Lang
    Senior Research Fellow at  University of Tartu, Tartu Observatory and Associate Professor at Estonian University of Life Sciences
    John C. Sullivan
    Founder and President at Resmantra OU
    Toomas Välja
    VP of Software Engineering at Hepta Airborne
    Ayush Jain
    Technician at Tartu Observatory 


    Kadri Tiisvelt
    COO│ Project Manager at Garage48
    Marelle Ellen
    Head of Marketing at sTARTUp Day
    Kai Isand
    Host, mentor and pitch coach at Garage48 
    Pauls Irbins
    Board Member at Heliocentric Technologies Latvia
    Karoli Kahn
    Project Manager at Tartu Observatory
    Merike Liiva
    Assistant of Industrial Design in Estonian Academy of Arts