The U.S. Geospatial Intelligence Foundation’s (USGIF) SmallSat Working Group will host a two-day workshop Nov. 16-17 at the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) in Springfield, Va. in an effort to further educate the GEOINT community on the user needs for and capabilities of SmallSats. The first day will be unclassified, but the second will be classified.
“The workshop will be the most significant gathering of GEOINT users and the growing SmallSat industry to date,” USGIF’s SmallSat Working Group co-chair and Senior Vice President and Chief Systems Architect for the national security sector at Leidos Rob Zitz said in Trajectory Magazine. “We think this is a key milestone on the way to big changes for the community.”
“The new actors in our mission space — from developers of SmallSats to international partners to online communities of geographers and technologists — are alive with energy and ideas that can enhance our collective contribution to our national security,” NGA National Geospatial Intelligence Officer for Commercial Imagery John Charles said. “The upcoming Small Satellite Workshop here at NGA is going to be an exciting step toward asking the right questions, facilitating synergistic exploration, and being open and accessible enough to learn.”
The Nov. 16 agenda will include keynotes and panel discussions from leaders in government and industry, including NGA Director Robert Cardillo; Space Policy National Security Council Director Chirag Parikh; Congressman Jim Bridenstine; U.S. Air Force Office of the Assistant Secretary for Acquisition Director of Space Programs Maj. Gen. Roger Teague; Planet Labs Co-Founder Robbie Schingler; BlackSky Global Chief Technology Officer Peter Wegner; and more.
The second day’s agenda will focus on current classified studies in resiliency and will include speakers from SmallSat programs at NGA, the National Reconnaissance Office, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency and more.
Around 20 exhibitors are scheduled to be on site for demonstrations and discussions, including BlackSky Global, DAn Solutions, Hera Systems, Leidos, Lockheed Martin, Luciad, Microcosm, Red Hat, URSA Space Systems, UrtheCast and ViON.
NGA seniors are expected to discuss the agency’s new Commercial GEOINT Strategy at the Small Satellite Workshop. The strategy will assist in providing a roadmap for NGA to harness the unprecedented wave of persistence from commercial GEOINT providers for rapid delivery of imagery products and services.