Today’s guest is Phil Carrai, President of the Space, Training & Cybersecurity Division at Kratos Defense and Security Solutions. Many federal listeners know that changing satellite technology has impacted their world – from communications to enhanced geographic information and data from sensors all over the world. This innovation has a tremendous impact on the defense community as well.
The proliferation of launch methods, new technologies and the drastic reduction in the size of satellites has given the green light for many companies and countries to place satellites in orbit. This means more services, and from the perspective of someone sitting in the Pentagon, it also means space has become a battlefield.
During the interview, Phil details a concept called “space situational awareness.” For example, satellites have limited fuel to maneuver. If a new satellite in orbit blocks their signal, this can be a strategic loss. Losing signal for a few minutes is not a big deal when it comes to a soccer score, but tremendously important when life-and-death situations are in play.
How do you train a space warrior for an environment unlike anything encountered before in earth? Phil Carrai suggests that creative use of virtual reality, augmented reality, and something called mixed reality. Creative use of existing technology can prepare the next generation of warfighters for this brave new world.
There are challenges in communication as well. Traditionally, satellites would exchange information with ground stations in separated from other networks, commonly called stovepipes. That’s changing with the cloud, the proliferation of satellites and potential threats, so the military and other government agencies must find new ways to manage Enterprise Ground Systems to make them resilient, scalable, and secure.
This ability must be accomplished in a secure environment while taking into consideration budget constraints.