In addition to coordinating maneuvers, Kayhan Pathfinder 3.0 produces reports showing what actions were taken to avoid a collision. Credit: Kayhan Space

SAN FRANCISCO –Kayhan Space raised $7 million in an extension to the spaceflight safety startup’s seed round and unveiled an autonomous space-traffic coordination framework.

With funding provided by Space Capital and EVE Atlas, Kayhan is preparing to expand its staff, establish a Washington, D.C., office and offer new products and services.

“This significant investment round with Space Capital and EVE Atlas marks a major milestone for Kayhan Space and the overall space industry, as we accelerate delivery of the first-ever autonomous space traffic coordination framework in Pathfinder 3.0,” Siamak Hesar, Kayhan CEO and Co-counder, said in a statement. “Pathfinder 3.0 is a gamechanger for space traffic management, as it provides a structured protocol for operators to coordinate maneuver responsibility at the machine level, and then automate maneuverability and collision avoidance at scale using an established rules-based framework.”

Pathfinder 3.0

Kayhan plans to begin beta testing in late October of Pathfinder 3.0, the latest update to the Boulder, Colorado company’s spaceflight safety platform. Pathfinder 1.0 assessed conjunction risks and recommended maneuvers. Pathfinder 2.0 helped satellite operators begin coordinating collision-avoidance actions.

The new version, Pathfinder 3.0, takes the idea of coordination further. Kayhan has incorporated rules for collision-avoidance planning and execution from the Space Safety Coalition’s Best Practices for the Sustainability of Space Operations.

“We’ve implemented a structured messaging protocol within our Pathfinder product to allow operators to coordinate maneuver responsibility for a conjunction that is coming up,” Matt Shouppe, Kayhan chief commercial officer, told SpaceNews.

The rules define, for example, who should take responsibility for collision avoidance when satellites from different operators are approaching one another.

“We designed a very elegant system to let operators accept or decline maneuver responsibility proactively through our platform,” Shouppe said.


Once a possible collision is detected, satellite operators can share planned maneuvers through the Kayhan platform. Maneuvers also can be handled through the Kayhan platform on a machine-to-machine level.

Satellite operators can sign up for Kayhan products including the free service, Pathfinder Essentials, and the subscription-based Pathfinder Pro. Kayhan plans to begin offering the beta version of Pathfinder 3.0 in late October, including autonomous traffic-coordination features, free of charge.

Previews of Kayhan’s Pathfinder 3.0 will be on display at the Advanced Maui Optical and Space Surveillance Technologies (AMOS) conference in Hawaii.

Investment Round

Kayhan, founded in 2019, raised $3.7 million in seed funding in 2021. Now, 22 satellite operators rely on Kayhan Pathfinder products to coordinate the activities of more than 500 satellites, Shouppe said.

“Space-based technologies are critical to our economy and national security and the ability for satellite operators to effectively share data, coordinate actions, and avoid a broad range of operational threats on orbit is game changing,” Chad Anderson, Space Capital founder and managing partner, said in a statement.

Thiago Olson, EVE Atlas founder and managing partner, said in a statement, “EVE Atlas is excited to be an investor in Kayhan Space and its spaceflight safety technology breakthroughs at this pivotal time, as an unprecedented number of satellites and mission spacecraft are taking flight throughout increasingly busy orbits.”

Debra Werner is a correspondent for SpaceNews based in San Francisco. Debra earned a bachelor’s degree in communications from the University of California, Berkeley, and a master’s degree in Journalism from Northwestern University. She...