FCC CIO Won’t Join NGA
Federal Communications Commission Chief Information Officer David Bray announced last week that he would not, as expected, become NGA’s new chief ventures officer. He had been slated to fill the position since June. According to NextGov, Bray will instead become executive director of the People-Centered Internet, a coalition to use the power of the internet to provide education, innovation, and prosperity. Bray will also pursue private consulting roles in machine learning and data integration strategies.
DigitalGlobe Announces Contract with Australian DoD
DigitalGlobe announced last week a Direct Access Program contract with the Australian Department of Defence. The four-year, $83 million contract will allow the Australian government to task and download imagery from DigitalGlobe’s satellite constellation in support of defense and intelligence missions.
DigitalGlobe also announced last week the Round 2 results of its SpaceNet machine learning challenge. Round 2 invited participants to improve upon their algorithms for automatically identifying building footprints in overhead imagery. The top three winning solutions—discussed on CosmiQ Works’ blog—achieved performance and demonstrated potential to automate this mapping task during natural disasters or intelligence missions.
U.S. Army Launches Kestrel Eye
The U.S. Army recently launched its Kestrel Eye surveillance microsatellite at Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla. The satellite was launched aboard a SpaceX rocket bringing a cargo resupply to the crew at the International Space Station. Kestrel Eye is a low cost, low weight electro-optical imagery satellite designed to send imagery directly to soldiers in the field rather than to ground stations. This first launch is a test demonstration that will determine whether the Army will continue to deploy Kestrel Eye satellites.
exactEarth’s Announces Vessel Tracking Partnership
exactEarth announced its exactTrax small vessel tracking service is now available for integration with all AIS transceiver manufacturers including Weatherdock AG’s VMS Track-Pro. VMS Track-Pro is a new Class B, battery powered, single-bracket transponder—a secure and cost-effective way to track small commercial boats. The partnership will provide the ability to monitor an unrivalled number of maritime vessels.
DLT Solutions Partners with Hortonworks
DLT Solutions announced a partnership with open data management platform Hortonworks to help government and public sector organizations analyze and manage data using open-source technologies. Open-source solutions offer budget-friendly ways for intelligence agencies to securely analyze big data sets, stream unstructured data, and improve situational awareness.
The MITRE Corporation announced five senior leadership appointments to new roles. Mark Maybury, Ph.D., will serve as vice president for MITRE’s intelligence portfolio; John Kreger will become vice president of Public Sector Programs; Eileen Boettcher will serve as vice president for Joint & Services Programs; Kerry Buckley, Ph.D., will be vice president for Intelligence Programs; and Douglas Robbins will serve as vice president for Air Force Programs.
Former NGA director Letitia Long was named an independent member of software firm Sonatype’s board of directors. Long will serve alongside representatives from Sonatype’s major investors, including Goldman Sachs and Accel Partners.
Photo Credit: DigitalGlobe