Geospatial Intelligence and Astronomy

Geospatial Intelligence and Astronomy

Some of our most critical intelligence comes from keen eyes spotting miniscule details in aerial imagery. Responsible for analyzing imagery from satellites, remotely piloted vehicles and other sources, Geospatial Intelligence specialists discern what is normal and what could be a threat. These highly trained experts perform a wide array of intelligence activities that include exploitation, development and distribution of multi-sensor geospatial intelligence products to support the needs of any of our missions.[1]

There’s more to geospatial imaging that looking for threats on Earth. Several research efforts have been initiated to improve Earth Orientation prediction. The space age was born out of the Cold War and took its first steps to meet national security and foreign policy goals of the United States and the Soviet Union. Over the course of the next several decades, the formation of a robust civil space/space exploration sector and national security space sector also formed strong boundaries between these communities. Over the last couple decades the commercial space sector has been focused on satellite communications and, more recently remote sensing also serving interests of civil and national security needs. However, in recent years, entrepreneurs, innovators, and investors have seized on the untapped potential of unique space applications that now blur the lines on what is driven and used by government and what is now of unique business interest with little to no government involvement. Areas once traditionally focused on by governments–space launch, human spaceflight, space situational awareness, space robotics, among many others, are now burgeoning commercial space sectors.

[1] U.S. Air Force “Geospatial Intelligence” website, downloaded January 19, 2017

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