Mission Space – the Space Technology Index

Mission Space – the Space Technology Index

03 May 2021Reading time: 3 minutes

"That's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind." Neil Armstrong is said to have said these famous words when he took his first steps on the moon. Millions of people watched the lunar landing on television. The global space industry has now grown into a multi-billion dollar market. Efforts to open up the vast unknown to tourism are on the verge of a breakthrough, more than 50 years after the moon landing.

The fascination of exploring not only the world, but also the vastness of outer space, has enchanted mankind for quite some time. The Soviet Union's Sputnik-1 space probe was the first satellite to be launched into orbit in 1957. In the years that followed, the Soviet Union and the United States engaged in a race for supremacy in space. Manned rocket flights, flights into orbit, an orbit around the moon and finally the moon landing followed suit. But the "mission space" is still ongoing. The great goal of today's space travel is certainly the exploration of the unknown - but also the commercial exploitation of space.

"Ingenuity" – the latest achievement

According to Nasa, the most recent achievement in the field occurred only a few days ago, when the Mars helicopter "Ingenuity" became the first aerial vehicle to complete a flight on another planet. In its first test flight, the mini-helicopter ascended, hovered in place for a few seconds and finally landed safely back on the surface of the 472 million kilometer distant planet. At first, that doesn't sound like much; but with the extreme conditions that prevail on Mars, it's a major achievement. After all, because of the thin atmosphere, the rotors of the mini helicopter, which weighs around 1.8 kg, have to accelerate at around 2,500 rotations per minute. This is far more than normal helicopters do on Earth. In addition, the electronics and the battery, which is powered by solar energy, have to withstand a lot: because at night it can get as cold as minus 90 degrees Celsius on Mars. Two more flights followed, during which color photos of the red planet were taken from the air for the first time.

Searching distant "life"

At the end of February, the mini-helicopter on board of the Nasa rover "Perseverance" landed on Mars near a dry lake after 203 days of flight. The Mars rover will explore this lake and the surrounding area within the next two years, and it is planned to learn more about the planet. The rover will search for traces of earlier microbial life and send them back to Earth, as well as explore the planet's climate and geology. A lot has been invested in the development and construction of the rover: eight years of work and 2.5 billion US dollars.

The multi-billion space market

Source: statista.com

As you can see from the latest achievements and the enormous investment volume for this project alone, the "mission space" is still in full swing. The market volume of the global space industry is gigantic - and still increasing after all these years. In addition to various states that support space research with investments in the billions, there are also more and more private companies that have become active in the field. One of the reasons why more and more start-ups have emerged in the sector alongside established companies is the lower costs - and the ever new possibilities that have emerged thanks to technological progress. This is accompanied by the commercial use of space technology, because even for private individuals, a trip into space no longer seems so far away. As early as the fourth quarter of 2021, the first flight into space is scheduled to take place, manned purely by civilians, thus giving the starting signal for a new form of tourism - and a market worth billions.

The Solactive Space Technology Index


Space technology is also attracting increasing interest from investors, which means that there could also be exciting investment opportunities for them. However, it is not easy to select the "right" companies from the large number of businesses that are active in the space technology sector. For this reason, Vontobel is launching tracker certificates on the Solactive Space Technology Index. The index comprises 20 companies that are leaders in the field of Space Technology. Initially, the following companies are included in the index:

The Space Technology Index is a performance index calculated by Solactive AG, i.e. dividends and other income from the index shares are reinvested in the index on a net basis ("net total return"). By means of tracker certificates, investors can participate almost one-to-one in potential price gains, but also in potential losses of the index. The management fee in the certificate is 1.20% p.a. Investors bear the issuer risk. The following chart shows how the stock selection in the index is made:

07/05/2021 01:03:57


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