11th April 2023 --
Sydney, Australia -- Saber Astronautics, a space mission management and operations company, won a $6.6M Defence Innovation Hub contract to transform existing space telescopes into space traffic sensors.
Following an initial $2.1m Defence Innovation Hub contract in 2019, this contract continues through to the third phase of development applying advanced algorithms to combine data from multiple different suppliers such as dedicated radars and telescopes. Leveraging Saber’s heritage in artificial intelligence and machine learning, the contract means Saber will be able to identify and track space objects in real-time, more accurately and effectively than ever before.
Developed by Saber Astronautics’ Australian laboratories, the project benefits from the company's leadership and expertise in space traffic management, exemplified by their Responsive Space Operations CentreTM (RSOC) program. This contract is a part of a broader initiative to improve space situational awareness and safety of flight and is scheduled to close in August 2025.
Initial research used hobby grade telescopes to demonstrate fusion from multiple small sensors can accurately refine a satellite’s position. The upcoming phase enables further integration with Saber’s mission control and cloud deployment systems, meaning they can draw from more sensors and more data. This phase will also include the first live operational trials at the RSOC in 2024. The RSOC leads the Pacific region as a centre of excellence in space domain awareness in partnership with multinational allies.
"The ability to repurpose existing space telescopes for space traffic management represents a significant leap forward in our efforts to improve space situational awareness and safety," said Dr. Jason Held, CEO of Saber Astronautics. "We are also excited to bring this technology to the public, so anyone with a telescope using our software can also have a go at tracking objects in space themselves."
For more information about Saber Astronautics and its work in space mission management and operations, visit www.saberastro.com.