Security Camera for Military Satellites

Redwire to Demonstrate a Security Camera for Military Satellites

The space-tracking software from ExoAnalytic Solutions will be installed on a navigation camera on a satellite in orbit as part of a demonstration later this year by the space infrastructure company Redwire.

The business is offering the military this technology as a security camera that could be mounted on satellites to keep an eye on potential dangers.

Spacecraft use machine-vision cameras, such as the one created by Redwire, to navigate and maneuver near other objects. According to Dean Bellamy, the company’s executive vice president for national security space, the camera will be updated with space-tracking algorithms to enable it to function as a surveillance camera for satellites.

“We want to upload the same technology that ExoAnalytic is using for their telescopes on the ground and put it on our camera,” he told SpaceNews.

Over 300 telescopes are run by ExoAnalytic, a business that monitors space.

Deep Space Systems, a business that joined Redwire in 2020, was the company that created the vision camera technology.

Technology to Be Tested on Starfish Vehicle

The demonstration is a requirement of a contract with satellite maintenance startup Starfish Space, which will use Redwire’s computer-vision camera in a future test mission.

Otter Pup, a Starfish servicing prototype vehicle, will travel to low Earth orbit on a Launcher Orbiter space tug during a SpaceX Falcon 9 rideshare mission scheduled for June.

In a mock-up of a satellite life-extension mission, the Otter Pup will attempt to rendezvous and dock with the Orbiter with the help of the palm-sized camera. Then, Redwire will try to use the camera as a space domain awareness sensor by uploading ExoAnalytic’s space-tracking algorithms to it.

According to Bellamy, the sensor will be used for star tracking and space object detection. Two catalogs, one for stars and one for local space objects, are processed and stored on-board by the camera.

Two Cameras for 360-degree Coverage

According to Bellamy, the camera and ExoAnalytic’s software, known as Cerebro by Redwire, would allow satellite manufacturers to eliminate star trackers and use just two cameras to provide 360-degree local proximity awareness and attitude control.

He claimed that the U.S. could use the ephemeris information gathered in orbit regarding the motion of resident space objects. The unified data library, the archive for Space Force.

“If you put the cameras on every Space Force mission that goes up,” Bellamy said, “you’d put a safety bubble around every satellite so you would know what’s happening, and you have attribution, characterization, indications and warning if somebody gets close.”

The Cerebro sensor’s cost was not made public by Bellamy. According to Redwire, each camera should cost less than 1% of the average cost of a satellite in a widely dispersed constellation, he claimed. This depends on the configuration.

On NASA’s Orion lunar spacecraft for the Artemis 1 mission, a version of Redwire’s navigation camera that was created under contract to Lockheed Martin circled the moon.

Read More: How Long Do Security Cameras Keep Footage?

Source: spacenews

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