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Space Channel: Turns out we are running out of space in space.

Updated: Mar 1, 2023


Over the next decade, Space traffic will likely grow 40 times with increasing defense and commercial space population.


NASA space debris expert Don Kessler observed that once past a certain critical mass, the total amount of space debris will keep on increasing: collisions give rise to more debris and lead to more collisions, in a chain reaction.


This is known as the Kessler Syndrome – when orbiting space junk becomes a self-perpetuating cycle for the creation of space debris causing big problems for satellites, astronauts, and mission planners.


But one company is helping manage this concern.


SCOUT is a new paradigm for space safety to help Space Craft Observe and Understand Things around them, and the company is changing the way space operations are executed by building vision-based autonomy solutions for Earth and space, enabling systems to better identify and avoid risks and failures through their SCOUT-Vision product.


We had the opportunity to speak with the founder and CEO of SCOUT, Inc., Eric Ingram.


Eric is a commercial spaceflight regulatory expert and was previously an Aerospace Engineer at the FAA Office for Commercial Spaceflight who oversaw licensing.


SCOUT is helping with space congestion, lack of data, preventing collisions and overcoming ground-based limitations of radar and optical systems that can’t keep up with the density and complexity of the growing space population, which makes space a safer and more sustainable environment for all us here on Earth.

In June 2021, SCOUT became the first-ever commercial company to launch an SSA payload, they launched the SCOUT-Vision proximity operation system and started successfully operating in space. By December 2021, SCOUT was selected to deliver spacecraft vision capabilities for upcoming missions with Momentus, a leading in-space infrastructure company, and won multiple awards.


Most recently, SCOUT announced its Autonomy Software for spacecraft which includes computer vision and guidance software to make navigation safer and less complex for space operators. By 2026 the company anticipates having roughly 100 OVER-Sat systems to provide continuous observation and coverage of low Earth orbit.


And as the space population continues to grow, so does Eric’s advocacy efforts to help people with disabilities to get access to space. Eric’s advocacy shines brightly in his work with AstroAccess and 2Gether International, which is a non-profit that supports entrepreneurs with disabilities.


We have the unique opportunity to create a future that starts with including and preparing for all of humanity.


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