The 3rd edition of EuRoC has begun

The opening ceremony of EuRoC took place this Wednesday and was attended by the Minister of Science, Technology and Higher Education, the President of the Portuguese Space Agency, the Mayor of Ponte de Sor, as well as representatives of the Portuguese Army.

The opening ceremony of the EuRoC – European Rocketry Challenge, a rocket launch competition for European university students, took place today at the Ponte de Sor Aerodrome. The ceremony was attended by the Minister of Science, Technology, and Higher Education, the President of the Portuguese Space Agency, the Mayor of Ponte de Sor, and representatives from the Portuguese Army.

Besides the opening ceremony, the second day of the competition was marked by the first contact of the participating students with the jury to present their project. The competition jury is composed of representatives from the Portuguese Space Agency, ANACOM, Ciência Viva, the Portuguese Air Force, the Portuguese Army, and the University of Aveiro.

During the ceremony, Ricardo Conde, President of the Space Agency, stressed that “when we started in 2020, with all the challenges imposed by the pandemic, we had about 100 students here. Today, we have more than 500 students from 11 European countries, who make up the 18 teams in competition. I believe that this year’s edition will allow us to confirm that Europe, and especially Portugal, is prepared for this type of initiative and that your work, and that of future generations, is essential to face the challenges and also the opportunities that the aerospace sector will bring us in the future”.

In his turn, Rogério Alves, Vice Mayor of Ponte de Sor, reinforced that “during the last decade, the Municipality of Ponte de Sor has been working to be an agent of change in the aerospace sector. This third edition of EuRoC reveals how much the competition has grown and how the skills and know-how of these teams have been improved over these years”.

Pedro Sardinha, Brigadier General, 2nd Commander of the Land Forces, added that “since the first edition in 2020, the Portuguese Army has been a partner in the organization of this unique event. “We are very pleased to once again establish this solid partnership of significant proportions with the Portuguese Space Agency. To that effect, a protocol was signed yesterday between the Portuguese Army and the Portuguese Space Agency, which will allow us to provide the maximum support to the several activities resulting from this 3rd edition of the competition. Furthermore, this partnership does not end with EuRoC and allows us to share experiences and follow paths for the development of new technologies in the aerospace sector”, he added.

Finally, Elvira Fortunato, Minister of Science, Technology and Higher Education, highlighted that “activities related to the space sector have grown significantly in recent years and Portugal has been closely monitoring this growth.” “The aerospace industry is growing in different sectors of activity and the information provided by satellites is increasingly important for different areas, such as climate change and plastic pollution of the oceans. Thus, it is very important for us your work to explore space through new technologies in different areas of activity,” she reinforced.

Between October 13 and 17, the rockets will be launched at Campo Militar de Santa Margarida (Constância), three launches per day, while the remaining teams will complete the preparation of the rockets at the Ponte de Sor Airfield. Finally, on October 18th, the awards ceremony and the closing ceremony will take place at the Ponte de Sor Airfield.

The 3rd edition of EuRoC has the participation of 18 European teams, composed of more than 500 students from 11 different countries. EuRoC was created in 2020 and is one of the several bets of the Portuguese Space Agency in the area of education, being this one of the strategic pillars of its activities since its foundation, in 2019. The Portuguese Space Agency, which sees in this bet on young people the future of the Portuguese space ecosystem, aims to promote and strengthen the space sector in Portugal, for the benefit of society and the national and international economy.

Portugal Space
13 of October, 2022