Military Embedded Systems

Satellites to be developed with AI to enable fast software upgrades


July 28, 2020

Emma Helfrich

Technology Editor

Military Embedded Systems

Hypergiant photo.

AUSTIN, Texas. The U.S. Air Force and Hypergiant, a private technology company in Texas, have started to develop new satellites designed to be capable of quick software changes in orbit to respond to threats and to carry out new tasks.

According to the company, Austin-based Hypergiant, which works on several kinds of artificial intelligence (AI) for surveillance and satellite technology, has a formal but classified agreement to develop technology for the Air Force, with a potential $10 million contract in weapon systems support satellites.

For the new military satellites, the goal is to create a new constellation of 24 to 36 satellites, called Chameleon, that could be retasked to avoid debris, counter new weapons, and block new cyberattacks or whatever conditions they might encounter, officials claimed.

The goal of the design, according to the company, is to use AI technology to enable manufacturing and hardware upgrades in space. Whether hardware updates for satellites materialize, speedy, frequent software updates are a goal for the industry

With AI, satellites could decide they need repair and fly to a repair satellite on their own, avoiding the path of space debris without instruction, company officials claimed.


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