Weekly GEOINT Community News

Space Weather Bill Introduced to Senate; LGS Innovations to Develop Remote Chemical Sensor; Stanford University Opens Map Center


Space Weather Bill Introduced to Senate

According to a Space News article, a bipartisan group of U.S. senators introduced legislation April 20 to improve space weather forecasting and preparedness efforts in parallel with a space weather strategy released by the White House last year. The Space Weather Research and Forecasting Act is intended to codify into law the responsibilities various government agencies have for forecasting and studying space weather, as well as assessing the vulnerability of the electrical grid and other critical infrastructure to geomagnetic storms. Under the bill, the Department of Defense and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration would take responsibility for providing operational space weather forecasts. NASA and the National Science Foundation would support that forecasting through basic space science research.

LGS Innovations to Develop Remote Chemical Sensor

LGS Innovations was awarded a four-year, $11.2 million contract to develop a compact, laser-based system to aid in the detection of chemical weapons, biological agents, explosives, narcotics, and chemical indicators of nuclear material development. The contract is in support of the Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity’s Standoff Illuminator for Measuring Absorbance and Reflective Infrared Light Signatures project. LGS will develop the physical hardware as well as the detection and discrimination algorithms to create a field-testable prototype for the U.S. government.

Stanford University Opens Map Center

Stanford University’s Green Library recently unveiled the David Rumsey Map Center, holding a collection of more than 150,000 maps, atlases, globes, and other historical treasures, reports Smithsonian Magazine. The map center is named after Rumsey, a retired San Francisco real estate developer who was a map collector. The center is the first fully integrated map center with technology for modern research applications. The facility will be used for classes, research projects, and by the public.

Accenture Opens Cyber Center in India

As a way of expanding its global security presence, Accenture is opening a cyber center in Bangalore, India. The facility brings a broad range of cyber defense services, enabling clients to tap into the latest strategies and technologies to address cybersecurity challenges.

Artificial Intelligence to Help Fight Poaching

The National Science Foundation has developed and tested an artificial intelligence app that incorporates a game theory model for wildlife protection, reports Popular Science. Named the Protection Assistant for Wildlife Security (PAWS), the app analyzes the terrain and topography of an area, revealing the paths where animals most often travel. Additionally, the app can prescribe randomized patrols, which can keep poachers from learning the patterns of wildlife officers and predicting when they may be nearby. Recently, PAWS was combined with another algorithm used to predict how likely a poacher attack will be.

Peer Intel

Mike Wasson joined AGI’s ComSpOC team as senior director, DoD space operations at the company’s Colorado Springs office. Wasson has more than 25 years in the U.S. Air Force space operations.

Photo Credit: Stanford Libraries, David Rumsey Map Center

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