Lieutenant Colonel Guy Mathewson from the National Reconnaissance Office (Office of Space Launch) gave the keynote at the Spring CubeSat Workshop, which began today at California Polytechnic State University (Cal Poly) in San Luis Obispo.

It’s still a bit jarring to see a representative of an agency whose very existence was secret for many years speaking at an open conference. Especially a conference that encourages other people to build satellites.

Lt. Col. Mathewson said that NRO is investigating meeting some of its future needs with CubeSats. Lt. Col. Mathewson believes CubeSats can simultaneously revolutionize how NRO gets intelligence and help to develop the future aerospace workforce.

The National Reconnaissance Office is not only talking about satellites openly, it is helping other organizations get their satellites into orbit. NRO is doing its first rideshare mission in August from Vandenburg Air Force Base, carrying 11 CubeSats. NRO plans to do one rideshare mission per year. “Not too many people thought NRO would be doing rideshare missions,” Lt. Col. Mathewson said.

Live streaming of CubeSat Workshop sessions is available here.

Written by Astro1 on April 18th, 2012 , Nanosatellites

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