At Space-Comm Expo 2023, Elizabeth Seward, Head of Space Strategy and Future Business, BAE Systems joined the FINN team to explain how the company’s Azalea multi-sensor satellite cluster will transform the way information is collected and processed in space.

The Azalea mission consists of three satellites that will have optical cameras on board as well as a radio frequency collect capability to detect radio waves. They will fly alongside a synthetic aperture radar satellite that will collect information at the same time, over the same piece of land, and the BAE Systems’ software defined radio will be able to process the information immediately and send that data down to a user on the ground.

Data in minutes

“We are aiming for is to really change the speed of information from the current download of days to hours to get your data, to minutes,” she explained.

For Seward, investments from companies like BAE Systems and others being made into the development of the space sector and new advances in technologies are really important to deliver and provide opportunities for the UK economy and its consumers.

She also explained the importance of mergers and acquisitions in moving the industry forward, including BAE’s acquisition of In-Space Missions last year. “The In-Space Missions team are one of the driving forces behind our Azalea investment – they are building our satellites for us, so we have a joint team together. We are putting the BAE Systems defence and security wrapper around their innovative new space approach to deliver this mission.”

BAE Systems is also “continuing to plot our growth and ambition”, according to Seward, and it is looking for new partners. “There will be some acquisitions possibly, but a lot is about working with the ecosystem in new collaborations and new partners,” she added.

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