In 2020, Ron Birk established and led three strategic initiatives aligned with national priorities for The Aerospace Corp.’s future space enterprise. The initiatives help advance capabilities in evolvable structures and ecosystems in space, optical communications, and national partnerships to develop new capabilities in artificial intelligence and autonomous systems, human space exploration, nuclear modernization, strategic manufacturing and quantum sciences, company leaders said.
Birk was also selected to co-chair the Consortium for Execution of Rendezvous and Servicing Operations Technical Working Group to leverage best practices from government and industry for consensus standards for on-orbit servicing and rendezvous and proximity operations as a foundation for new commercial space capabilities and a future in-space economy.
He served as vice president of finance and was elected as executive vice president of the American Astronautical Society to advance space activities for all through national symposia, technical conferences and publications to extend impact shaping the U.S. space program.
Birk remains focused on establishing partnerships for national priorities to advance technical and operational capabilities for U.S. leadership in space. He will also be involved in efforts to apply digital engineering and digital threads across the development life cycle, and establishing a common framework for space enterprise integration for multiple national security mission use cases.
“The space enterprise needs to work together to develop the cislunar neighborhood with sustainability in mind,” Birk said.
Birk is also working on advancing standards, tools, processes and technologies to enable rapid development, deployment and evolution of evolvable structures and ecosystems in space. Civil, defense and commercial organizations are applying foundational building blocks of launch availability, software-enabled technologies, and capabilities for on-orbit servicing, assembly and manufacturing to build up infrastructure in space.
Birk’s teams are applying common approaches through partnerships and collaboration across the space enterprise to enable space infrastructure needed to develop a cislunar neighborhood.
“Moving beyond one-and-done space systems to a future of building and rapidly evolving systems in space, it’s time for space enterprise integration,” Birk said. “Critical national space missions benefit from close collaboration across organizations and people who own and operate systems as part of space ecosystems.”