Latest Public Sector News


Funding boost for drones to deliver Covid-19 testing kits and other solutions

Three new projects have been unveiled today (July 10) by Science Minister Amanda Solloway, to receive funding for technologies and services that will support the NHS’ response to coronavirus.

The UK Space Agency and European Space Agency (ESA) are jointly-backing the new projects developing space-enabled technologies, including drones delivering Covid-19 testing kits and data to support vulnerable people.

The three projects are:

  • Space-Enabled Delivery Drones for the COVID Response (SEDDCR)

A London based project, working with NHS Highland to use drones to deliver medical supplies to islands off the west coast of Scotland.

s300 drone gov uk

Credit: Skyports

  • Stay

A Bristol based project, developing an app for charities and organisations to support young people’s mental health and wellbeing. Satellite communication will be used to reward young people for acting positively with ‘badges’ linked to rewards, discounts or other incentives.

stay gov uk

Credit: Landmrk

  • Isolation +

Based in Musselburgh, Scotland, this solution uses advanced space data analytics to identify “hidden” vulnerable communities, allowing local authorities to target their support.

astrosat gov uk

Credit: Astrosat

An initial £2.6m was made available, with these first three schemes receiving a total of £1.1m. Further bids are set to be funded in the future with the call for ideas remaining open until Sept 30, 2020.

Science Minister Amanda Solloway said:

“I’m proud of how our world-leading space sector is stepping up to provide innovative solutions to directly support our amazing NHS, as we continue our national effort to tackling coronavirus.

“The projects we are backing today show UK ingenuity at its finest, and will make a real difference to how we use this latest innovative technology to deliver critical healthcare now and long into the future.”

 LISTEN: Ep. 17 The wider impact of Covid-19 on our children - Cllr Fiona Venner


There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment


public sector executive tv

more videos >

last word

Prevention: Investing for the future

Prevention: Investing for the future

Rob Whiteman, CEO at the Chartered Institute of Public Finance (CIPFA), discusses the benefits of long-term preventative investment. Rising demand, reducing resource – this has been the r more > more last word articles >

public sector focus

View all News


Peter Kyle MP: It’s time to say thank you this Public Service Day

21/06/2019Peter Kyle MP: It’s time to say thank you this Public Service Day

Taking time to say thank you is one of the hidden pillars of a society. Bei... more >
How community-led initiatives can help save the housing shortage

19/06/2019How community-led initiatives can help save the housing shortage

Tom Chance, director at the National Community Land Trust Network, argues t... more >


Artificial intelligence: the devil is in the data

17/12/2018Artificial intelligence: the devil is in the data

It’s no secret that the public sector and its service providers need ... more >