Ross at AGI
Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross gets a briefing on space traffic management capabilities during a visit to AGI June 18. Credit: Commerce Dept.

Story updated Nov. 2 with new information on the Commercial Space Operations Center

WASHINGTON — Ansys, a company that specializes in engineering simulation software, announced Oct. 26 it intends to acquire space data services provider Analytical Graphics Inc. for $700 million.

Pittsburgh-based Ansys said the acquisition of AGI will help expand the company’s commercial space and government business. AGI is headquartered in Exton, Pennsylvania, 

Ansys is acquiring AGI’s digital engineering and mission software business but not the Commercial Space Operations Center, an organization that tracks objects in orbit and analyzes the data to provide satellite operators with warnings of potential close approaches, or conjunctions. The COMSPOC was previously owned by AGI but has been spun off as an independent company, AGI officials told SpaceNews. 

The $700 million deal — to be paid two-thirds in cash and one-third through the issuance of Ansys stock — is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2020 pending regulatory approval.

Ajei Gopal, president and CEO of Ansys, said the combination of his company’s and AGI’s technologies will help to “solve challenges by simulating from the chip now all the way to a customers’ entire mission – like tracking an orbiting satellite and its periodic connection to ground stations.”

Space situational awareness companies like AGI project growth in their business based on the anticipated congestion in Earth’s orbit and the planned creation of a U.S. government civilian agency to manage space traffic management. 

In addition to providing space situational awareness data analytics, AGI develops software that customers use to design, launch and operate satellite constellations.

Paul Graziani, CEO and co-founder of AGI, said in a statement that the company over its three decades in existence has “continuously invested in our technology to create and advance digital mission engineering.”

Sandra Erwin writes about military space programs, policy, technology and the industry that supports this sector. She has covered the military, the Pentagon, Congress and the defense industry for nearly two decades as editor of NDIA’s National Defense...