“Our goal with Prometheus is to democratize world observation.”

After taking a degree in mechanical engineering with CNAM, it was the first time in aeronautics that Giao-Min Nguyen later began his professional career before discovering the aerospace sector. He spent seven years at the Safran Group before joining Airbus for 10 years in the Astrium space division – as Purchasing Director at the Satellite branch, then as Program Director at Arian Group. During this time, Giao-Minh Nguyen led the space surveillance activities as well as the Q @ TS (Quick Access to Space) micro-launcher program, dedicated to launching CubSat, a format of nano-satellites. It was during this time that he discovered the New Space Sector before joining Open Cosmos, a British cobset manufacturing startup, VP of operations and institutional sales, before being founded two years after Prometheus.

Big Media: What has attracted you to the new space sector?

Giao Min Nguyen: On the one hand, its technical and commercial challenges, and on the other hand, all related change management. When I came to this sector, space was reserved for strategic defense or scientific matters. What excites me now is that this new market is associated with the democratization of space, this extremely strong business partnership that Newspace represents. And thanks to personalities like Thomas Pesquet, who doesn’t dream of space today?

Moreover, the astronauts who have observed the Earth from space have all been touched by its beauty, its fragility and its desire to protect it. This phenomenon is called “overview effect” and this is what Prometheus did. This means protecting people and the planet using the most innovative “tools” to monitor our constantly changing environment and thus enabling governments, businesses and citizens to make the best decisions because see c is to be able to know and act.

BM: Which trigger led you to co-founder Prometheus?

GMN: Meeting with Olivier Pipsz, VP of the International Department of Safran, when I piloted the Q @ TS program at the Aryan Group. We have found that users of space data collected through Earth observations represent less than 1% of the world’s population. However, satellite observation allows public and private actors and governments to have a global understanding of the regions and plan their actions accordingly. And this, with various applications, such as security, environment, crisis management, natural disasters and so on. The fact that we held positions in large companies enabled us to realize that the advantages of this technology are relatively unknown outside of these companies. We therefore set out with Prometheus the goal of democratizing world observation and providing countries with ways to protect their populations, especially so-called emerging countries, which are often excluded from this offer.

“The government has announced the implementation of the France 2030 program, which will dedicate 1.5 billion euros to the new space.”

BM: How does Prometheus respond to these problems?

GMN: We chose to focus on two types of verticals: strategic intelligence (security and defense) and environmental intelligence. Our constellation system will allow our users to refresh the data collected by 20 nano satellites in a very short time, every two to three hours. Moreover, this information belongs to both visible and hyperspectral domains, i.e. optical technology will make it possible to characterize the subject. It will be able to detect, for example, this kind of yellow surface a field, but more, to analyze whether it is a wheat or soybean crop, whether it shows signs of disease, etc. Finally, we offer a digital platform through which our customers can format raw data or data in the form of a graphic report using algorithms. In short, it is a true end-to-end offer where technology is no longer an end in itself, but a medium and one that truly meets the needs of end users through easily accessible and usable data.

BM: The new space sector is evolving worldwide. What is the important role of France in this market?

GMN: Yes, definitely, and a lot of encouraging information shows it. If the number of French players in the new space continues to grow, the government has also announced the implementation of the France 2030 program, which will dedicate 1.5 billion euros to the new space. A significant amount for a sector mainly driven by start-ups and SMEs! This encourages many foreign players to come and stay in France; Beyond economic appeal, they are interested in our talents, especially in digital technology or engineering. France will also host a number of major events for the sector this year, such as the Asis du New Space or the International Astronautical Congress – one of the most important meetings for the aerospace industry. All this points to a bright future for the French New Space ecosystem.

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