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Fantasy Becomes Reality, Filmmaking in Space?

We live in the era of the space science revolution, and many phenomena that are science fiction today will become reality in a few years, presenting a significant economic potential for the industry – these are some of the insights that, while serving as a bold encouragement to both startups and representatives of various industries, were voiced during the two-day Baltic’s most ambitious science and technology conference “Deep Tech Atelier 2024” held in Riga.

Gathering speakers from the UK, Switzerland, Germany, Luxembourg, France, Finland, Japan, the USA, and other countries, as well as professionals from various industries, students, academics, and other enthusiasts, this year’s conference organized by the Investment and Development Agency of Latvia (LIAA) took place for the sixth time, coinciding with the European Space Agency’s day.

The event, held across three stages, placed emphasis on bio and space technologies and their significance in human life today. It was a reminder that space does not only mean boarding a spacecraft for interstellar missions.

In the future, manufacturing and filmmaking could take place in space

For example, one of the world’s most renowned Italian space science engineers, Bianca Cefalo, emphasized in her vibrant and informative presentation that space technologies are used in everyday life, from navigation functions and weather forecasts to mobile communications, broadband internet, distance learning, and social networking.

She outlined a vision for the future where many processes currently happening on Earth could be transferred to the space environment, from industrial production to filmmaking, along with the potential economic contribution of space technologies, estimated to reach trillions of euros within the next decade. Whether this means that the long-dreamed-of vision of everyday transport routes to another galaxy will be realized in the near future, only time will tell.

Throughout the event, both attendees and virtual viewers had the opportunity to hear dozens of stories of practical experience in various technological applications, turning innovative ideas into successful businesses in energy, medicine, security, and other fields, as well as receiving information on current trends that intersect technology sectors with academic environments and expected solutions for the future.

A Modern Workplace Challenge: Burnout and Mental Instability

Several conference participants also drew attention to various side effects that affect not only those working in the space and technology sectors.

The most prominent speaker on this issue was the world-renowned consultant for companies and high-level athletes and mental and physical health specialist Rob Brinded.

In his engaging narrative, he delved into the similarities between the human body and the mechanisms of technology, and the body’s response to various commonly encountered problems in today’s world, such as work overload, endless pursuit of high goals, leading to burnout and mental health problems and instability, comparing it to a hamster running on a wheel.

“A hamster runs like crazy, but doesn’t get anywhere, just runs, sometimes falls over or slides back to the starting point,” illustrated R. Brinded, offering finding a healthy work-life balance as a solution to the problem.

A special place at the event was also reserved for startup representatives, who were given only three minutes to present their business ideas. Nearly a dozen innovators used this opportunity to describe various revolutionary concepts in energy, medicine, health improvement, and other areas to an expert jury and potential investors. Solutions offered in the health sector particularly attracted attention, such as an eye training device for vision improvement and even artificial transplantable organs.

Medicine and health are areas that startups have often focused on in the past. According to data from the Latvian Startup Association, at the beginning of the year, there were 449 startups registered in Latvia’s Startin.LV startup database. Most Latvian startups operate in spheres such as “FinTech” (financial technology), “HealthTech” (health technology), artificial intelligence, “MedTech” (medical technology), and mobility.

This year, approximately one and a half thousand attendees from around the world attended the “Deep Tech Atelier 2024” conference in person.

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The funding for the event is provided from the ERDF projects “Development of Innovative Entrepreneurship of SMEs” and “Support for the Improvement of Technology Transfer System,” the Norwegian Financial Mechanism 2014-2021 program “Enterprise Development, Innovation, and SMEs,” and the state budget program 28.00.00. Funds for the Implementation of Foreign Economic Policy State Image. The conference content is developed in collaboration with the platform “Commercialization Reactor,” Riga Technical University’s Science and Innovation Center, the Latvian Space Industry Association, and the Biocatalyst Foundation.

More information is available at https://deeptechatelier.com

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