CATEC and B2SPACE have signed a collaboration agreement by which both entities will promote the activity of the space industry through the validation of test flights and equipment in near-space conditions and destined for orbit through the use of the Near Space Testing platform, developed by B2SPACE, which will be tested in the ATLAS flight centres, belonging to CATEC.

B2SPACE’s Near Space Testing platform allows testing in the stratosphere, an environment that offers conditions similar to those in outer space, such as high temperature gradients, low pressure, microgravity and solar and cosmic radiation. This type of testing is crucial to validate the endurance and functionality of space equipment before launch. CATEC’s ATLAS facilities provide a controlled and safe environment for these tests, reducing the risks and costs associated with in-orbit testing.

The use of Near Space Testing makes it easier for companies to conduct preliminary tests and detect potential problems at an early stage, minimising the associated costs and risks, while accelerating the development cycle of space technologies. Companies can iterate their designs and improve their products faster, enabling them to stay competitive in a dynamic market. The combination of the B2SPACE platform and CATEC’s facilities facilitates an agile and flexible environment for innovation.

Joaquín Rodríguez, CEO of CATEC, and Víctor Montero, co-founder, co-CEO and COO of B2SPACE, were the protagonists of the signing, which represents an important step forward for the space sector in the area of flight test and validation of equipment destined for orbit. Rodriguez stressed that “this agreement means the creation of a one-stop shop to provide system developers, payloads, small satellites or experiments with access to a launch centre and a launch platform for testing or operations in the stratosphere. The combination of the B2SPACE platform and the facilities of the two ATLAS centres offers a valuable new service and facilitates the creation of new business opportunities and strategic alliances in Spain.

On behalf of B2SPACE, Montero said, “The aerospace sector increasingly requires flexible, fast and cost-effective developments. To achieve this goal, the key is strategic collaboration, and this partnership with CATEC represents a significant boost to facilitate access to space within the sector.

Technology accelerator for startups and large enterprises

For startups and large space companies, access to adequate infrastructure and resources for technology validation is critical to their growth and success. The ability to test in Near Space offers a unique opportunity to accelerate the development and commercialisation of space products, while reducing the associated costs and risks.

By committing to provide equipment, facilities and technical capabilities for missions in this environment, CATEC and B2SPACE become key catalysts for innovation and progress in the space industry, giving a significant boost to both established and emerging companies.

Moreover, this collaboration is not only limited to the business sphere, but fosters innovation through the facilitation of research and development projects for universities and technology centres, by providing access to advanced facilities and specialised technical capabilities. This commitment contributes to the advancement of scientific and technological knowledge in the space domain.