Space for Olympic Games

  • OpportunityIntended Tender
  • ActivityFeasibility Study, Demonstration Project
  • Opening date15 October 2022
  • Closing date31 December 2025

***Opening date is tentative***

ANNOUNCEMENT OF OPPORTUNITY

The intended call for proposals aims at supporting new space-based services for the digital transformation and sustainability of the sport sector, specifically in the organisation, management, and further exploitation of the Olympic and Paralympic Games. It primarily targets the next Games in Europe - Paris 2024 and Milano Cortina 2026, with the ambition of providing services for the future Games as well, ensuring continuity of the sustainability model. 

Both Paris 2024 and Milano Cortina 2026 have committed to deliver net-zero events with a strong engagement of the communities, and these new challenges require investments in innovation, where space can offer ubiquitous information and connectivity in support of a punctual as well as long term perspective. New services are required for the preparation phase before the Games, during the event itself, and in the post-event phase for the most efficient exploitation of the critical infrastructures, the safe and fun engagement of the fans, and the environmental sustainability of the events.

Examples of possible use cases are provided below and in Annexes, either focused on a specific edition of the Games, or considered as common to all the future editions.

The topics of interest have been derived after several interactions with key stakeholders of the sector, including:

  • Olympic committees (e.g. Paris 2024, Infrastrutture per Milano Cortina 2026, Fondazione Milano Cortina 2026);
  • partners of the Olympic Games (e.g. Atos and Omega);
  • innovation hubs for acceleration of technology uptake in the sport industry: European Platform for the Sport Innovation EPSI, Global Sport Innovation Centre GSIC)

SCOPE

Given the extreme visibility and relevance of the Olympic Games, the proposed applications must demonstrate robustness and reliability. A fast and short-term implementation of the proposed application is subject to a proved maturity and integrity of the service.

A longer development and validation process should be built on a sensible plan potentially involving more events and Games editions to support the final deployment of the service, where one edition of the Games or a major sport event could be used as a test-bed before operational deployment of the service.

A continuous use of the proposed service throughout subsequent Games is encouraged, as well as the implementation of a continuous learning approach from one edition to the other.

Some of the needs are shared across the whole sport industry, especially regarding competition events. Applicability of the proposed service to different major sports events is encouraged and should be taken into consideration.

Each proposed service should assess its economic viability for the service provider and the cost-benefit analysis of the potential customers (e.g. the Olympic Committees).

Topics of interest include (non-exhaustive list):

Sustainable infrastructure:

  • planning of sustainable new building/infrastructures (transport, energy and other utilities, connectivity) based on assessment of their environmental impact, and aiming at versatility and flexibility of their use after the Games to ensure a return of the investment in the long-term
  • support the planning and location in case of temporary and demountable venues where no long-term venue legacy need exists or can be justified (e.g. mapping of the locations and analysis of the logistics, environmental impact analysis, efficiency of the buildings, monitoring of the working sites status)
  • renewal, adaptation and enhancement of the use of existing facilities (e.g. smart building, digitalisation and safety of access)
  • monitoring and maintenance of the fields of play for the athletes, to guarantee the state-of-the-art for all competitions 

Services around construction sites:

  • providing connectivity to support the construction venues, particularly in remote locations
  • security of the access to the construction sites, e.g. tracing the authorised vehicles, checking the compliance of materials and tools to the regulations, verifying the compliance of environment and places within the sites
  • monitoring of the progresses of the construction sites and their timely development

Smart and green (Olympics) cities:

  • services supporting the transition towards circular and smart cities for the sustainability of the hosting locations
  • cleanness of outdoor areas where competitions are located (e.g. waters for open sea sports; outdoor routes for cycling competitions)
  • mobility, logistics and transport services in line with the carbon neutral aim of the event and with the need to host a high number of users for a short period of time
  • mobility and logistic services through all the event venues and locations
  • achievement of a net-zero event 
  • promote the cultural heritage of the hosting locations

Smart management of the event:

  • services for the navigation and indoor/outdoor flow optimisation (e.g. people, vehicles, public transport)
  • information access & display, e.g. through smartphones or tablets for the general public, with easy-to-use information, display through dashboards, etc.
  • risk assessment and monitoring (e.g. cyber-attacks, fault of systems)
  • external conditions assessment and monitoring (e.g. accurate weather forecast, alert of possible disruptions of services), especially when variability of the climate conditions is expected (e.g. Winter Games editions)
  • crowd management, first response and management of emergency events, public safety:
  • before the events: predicting the mass, behaviour, and composition of the flow of people to optimise the operational services. Data from past events in high-density fan zones (like Euro 2016, Tour de France, Champions League) may be used to model those parameters.
  • during the events: creating a real-time monitoring system of the flow of people (e.g. heatmaps) that can support the management of the operational services. Those can also be distributed externally for self-regulation of the crowd.
  • after the events: systematisation of these data for feedback collection and lessons learnt. Optimisation and training of machine learning (ML) algorithms for the prediction of future behaviours.  

Engagement with the communities:

  • increase accessibility of the “Olympics” experience, improving the fan engagement during the event especially for the younger generations
  • blend sport and culture at Games time and between Olympic Games
  • sharing of the Olympic values (e.g. into education programmes)
  • increase transparency and digitalisation of financial management and transactions 

Athletes’ preparation and training: 

  • tailored monitoring of the performance for the specific sport (e.g. through new generation of dedicated wearable devices, integration of environmental data in the performance analysis)
  • virtual training based on Virtual/Augmented Reality (VR/AR)
  • customised tools (e.g. artificial intelligence (AI) based) for the health parameters assessment
  • sustainable food production/selection to support a higher performance achievement of the athletes 
  • management of athletes’ data, security of the distribution channels of their performance and scores, enhanced connectivity for the real time sharing of the competitions’ results 

VALUE OF SPACE 

To achieve the objectives and address the above areas, the proposed services shall leverage on space assets, such as: 

Satellite Navigation (SatNav): 

  • supports geo-localisation of vehicles and routing to events and facilities, mapping of the position/velocity of the athletes during training for performance improvement, or during competition for results assessment

Satellite Communications (SatCom): 

  • enables the provision of connectivity to enhance the communication links of the facilities, connectivity of Internet of Things (IoT) devices for the monitoring of the event parameters, support of remote locations selected for specific sports (e.g. Tahiti for Surf, Mountains in the Winter Olympics)

Earth Observation (SatEO) including weather: 

  • monitoring of the status of the working sites, collect information on geographical and environmental parameters for the sustainability analysis, integration of environmental data into the athlete performance assessment

Human Spaceflight: 

  • technology transfer of health/life parameters sensors, innovative textiles, algorithms for the physical status assessment

In addition to space assets other innovative technologies such as non-fungible tokens (NFTs), Web 3.0, AR/VR, AI/ML, cyber secure digital technologies, robotics, unmanned/remotely piloted transportation systems such as Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS), Unmanned Surface Vehicles (USV), etc. can be used if relevant to the identified use cases.

WHAT ARE WE LOOKING FOR?

The call offers the opportunity to companies to bring forward their business propositions, which will leverage on space assets to support the digital transformation and sustainability of the next Olympic Games. 

For this call, companies residing in the following Member States will be eligible to apply: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.

Economic Operators, intending to respond to this Thematic Call are requested to inform their National Delegations of their intention to submit a proposal as soon as possible, prior to the submission of the Outline Proposal.

Contact information can be found under: National Delegations.

WEBINAR

  • 11:00 CEST, 21 September 2022
  • Speakers
    • Elena Razzano - Business Applications Officer at ESA
    • Laurent Clergue - Director of Innovation at Atos Technical Services France
    • Christophe Grasso - Innovation Business Manager at Swiss Timing Ltd
    • Alberto Bichi - Executive Director of European Platform for Sport Innovation (EPSI)