Tech Expo Showcases Aerospace’s Technical Excellence to Defense Partners

The inaugural event invited senior leaders across DoD space offices to see some of Aerospace’s research and development portfolio firsthand, and to discuss future priorities and partnerships.
Tech Expo panelists

Aerospace’s unwavering commitment to delivering innovative and integrated solutions to solve the most difficult problems facing the national security space community was showcased during its recent Tech Expo for Department of Defense (DoD) Space. The inaugural event invited senior leaders across DoD space offices to see some of Aerospace’s research and development portfolio firsthand, ask questions, and engage in a dialog with each other and Aerospace about future priorities and partnerships.

In response to rapid changes in the space domain caused by the emergence of new threats, cutting-edge technologies and a shifting industry landscape, Aerospace’s internal research and development is playing an essential role in addressing ongoing challenges and delivering capability. Furthermore, Aerospace is actively prioritizing its investments to deliver distinctive capabilities and bridge the gaps between commercial providers and the U.S. government’s most difficult problems in space.

Steve Isakowitz greets Tech Expo attendees
Aerospace President and CEO Steve Isakowitz welcoming participants to inaugural event.

“We have focused our dollar investments through the Office of the Chief Technology Officer (OCTO) to make sure that we’re strategically going after the most critical things that are important for the future, as well as the prototypes that we develop and how we conduct business,” said Steve Isakowitz, President and CEO of Aerospace. “In recent years, there has been a lot of investment in technology we’ll be discussing today, such as artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), autonomy, robotics, laser communications and quantum. These are really exciting things that are challenging to us, and we have to leverage these capabilities as best we can because if we don’t, our adversaries will.”

Leveraging Investments for Future Threats

The event outlined the role investments in technology and Aerospace’s capabilities have played in addressing and defeating threats, and the impact of these advancements in securing and advancing the nation’s warfighting capabilities was highlighted.

“To be prepared for future conflicts, we have to look into the future so we can start working on the technology today,” said Marty Whelan, Senior Vice President of Aerospace’s Defense Systems Group. “With regards to warfighting, all of our services are linked to space. Because of that reliance on space, we must have resilience, and we derive that resilience from technological advancements.”

Several technical sessions were held during the event, the first of which spotlighted game-changing space capabilities made possible by Aerospace research and development, such as highly efficient, additively manufactured mirrors and a proposed space debris mitigation and disposal plan that addresses gaps in cislunar space-safety standards and policies. The event also included a session devoted to Dynamic Space Operations (DSO), highlighting the distinctions between positional and reactive operations, the use of dynamic operations to mitigate threats and accomplish missions, and the role of Aerospace investments in enabling this future.

Tech Expo panelists 2
Audience members engaged directly with panelists during the Making Transformational Investments panel.

A session centered upon artificial intelligence for automation, data analytics, and exploitation in the space enterprise was also held. This session addressed Aerospace’s research in developing advanced techniques for data exploitation, including projects related to mission management and orchestration, the development of data analytics capabilities for autonomy, the co-funding of joint efforts to explore ML operations in space with NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratories, and generative AI.

The event also included a panel discussion regarding transformational investments, followed by flash talks, classified briefings, and exhibits of advanced concepts at Aerospace’s Experiments Lab (xLab) and Physical Sciences Laboratories (PSL), such as the Lasercomm crosslink terminal, quantum, and photonics, and prototypes and in-space testbeds, such as Moonlighter, Edge Node and Paladin.

Investing Today for a Secure Tomorrow

Aerospace’s corporate strategy focuses on aligning capabilities to meet the evolving needs of its government partners to stay ahead of a dynamic space domain. A key pillar of that strategic approach is to continue broadening and deepening Aerospace’s technical expertise.

“We’ve put our resources into our priority investments and split our portfolio across that breadth and depth of technical expertise,” said Dr. Debra Emmons, Vice President and Chief Technology Officer of Aerospace. “Much like our investments in our modernization and digital future, investments in architectures, policy, and end-to-end capabilities will further secure our role as the nation’s trusted partner delivering mission success across the space enterprise.”

Aerospace investments are playing a crucial role in driving innovation and advancements for the nation’s space capabilities, and the corporation remains committed to strategically growing its capabilities and expertise to shape the future.