The new Amazon Web Services (AWS) Aerospace and Satellite Solutions division is on a listening tour with customers as its leaders work to set up the department. Retired Maj. Gen. Clint Crosier, department director, offered some insight into how the new department is taking shape in a conversation with reporters on Dec. 16 as part of the AWS re:Invent 2020 virtual summit.
Crosier said the department is building teams to focus on launch operations; satellite command and control; and space exploration. Crosier said he is spending time with customers to learn about their challenges and needs to see where AWS can serve them.
“We’re very much listening to our customers, starting to build our long-range strategy, working on a few things we think are really going to make a difference,” he said.
In terms of specific areas of focus the division is exploring, Crosier mentioned autonomous operations, Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) programs that can sift quickly through data, and digital engineering/digital twin capability, which will save space customers time in designing complex systems.
Crosier briefly addressed potential synergies between AWS Aerospace and Satellite division and Project Kuiper, which is a project of Amazon, and not connected to the AWS division. Crosier said the division has had a number of meetings with Kuiper
“We want to be able to help Kuiper succeed, just the way we’re helping other companies in those areas succeed as well,” he said.
He also said that AWS Ground, which is part of the department, still plans to establish 12 ground systems, and it recently opened its eight ground station in Hawaii. Progress has been slowed by COVID, but the department is working to build on the long-range strategic roadmap for the ground station segment.
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