Industry, government and academic leaders focused on space situational awareness are meeting in Hawaii Sept. 20-23 for this year’s Advanced Maui Optical and Space Surveillance Technologies Conference.

The annual event highlights policy and technical discussions surrounding government and commercial space situational awareness surveillance.

SpaceNews’ Mike Gruss will moderate discussions with Maj. Gen. David Thompson, the vice commander of Air Force Space Command, and Doug Loverro, the deputy assistant secretary of defense for space policy, following their keynote addresses Tuesday, Sept. 21.

On Wednesday, Sept. 22, Gruss will also talk about the role of international partnerships with Frank Rose, the assistant secretary of state for arms control and verification, after his keynote address

TUESDAY, SEPT  20 – Subject to Change

8:00 AM – 12:00 PM


1. Collision Avoidance Risk Assessment | Mauna Loa Ballroom

  • Presented by Francois Laporte and Monique Moury, CNES; and Matt Hejduk and Lauri Newman, NASA/GSFC

2. ARCADE Programing 101 | Ilima Ballroom

  • Presented by Chris Sabol, Air Force Research Laboratory; Simon Nunn, ISS Inc.; Jeremy Murray-Krezan, Air Force Research Laboratory

1:00 PM – 5:00 PM


3. Observing and Characterizing Space Debris | Mauna Loa Ballroom

  • Presented by Thomas Schildknecht, Professor, Astronomical Institute of the University of Bern and Director, Swiss Optical Ground Station and Geodynamics Observatory Zimmerwald

4. Theory and Application of Multi-Objective Optimization Using Genetic Algorithm | Ilima Ballroom

  • Presented by Triet Tran, Cornerstone Consulting and Services LLC

6:00 PM – 7:30 PM


Co-sponsored by The Boeing Company

WEDNESDAY, SEPT. 21 – Subject to Change

7:30 AM


Jeanne Unemori Skog, President & CEO, Maui Economic Development Board


Reverend Kealahou Alika, Keawala‘i Congregational Church

7:45 AM


Introduction by L. Kirk Lewis (Col, Ret.), Senior Analyst, Institute for Defense Analyses

Maj. Gen. David D. Thompson, Vice Commander, Air Force Space Command

Douglas L. Loverro, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Space Policy

8:45 AM

Discussion and Q&A with Maj. Gen. Thompson and Mr. Loverro

Facilitated by Mike Gruss, SpaceNews

9:15 AM – 10:15 AM

SSA POLICY FORUM: Toward Space Traffic Management | Aulani Ballroom

Although the topic of space traffic management (STM) is not new, it has recently seen renewed interest among satellite operators and governments. Growing international and commercial interest in space has increased concerns about physical and radiofrequency congestion in key orbits. Commercial companies have announced plans to conduct space activities such as human spaceflight, space situational awareness, on-orbit satellite servicing, and exploration of the Moon and asteroids that challenge existing licensing and regulatory frameworks. At the same time, top military leaders have expressed interest in moving away from providing conjunction assessment for all satellite operators, and civil agencies such as the FAA/AST has expressed interest in taking their place. This session will discuss the current status of the STM discussion within the United States, what steps are being considered for future responsibilities and authorities, and the major questions that still need to be answered.


Moderated by Brian Weeden, Technical Advisor, Secure World Foundation

  • Stephan Earle, Space Traffic Lead & Air Force Interfaces Lead, FAA/AST
  • Doug Hendrix, CEO, ExoAnalytic Solutions
  • Josef Koller, Space Policy Advisor, OSD-P
  • Myland Pride, Director of Government Affairs, Intelsat

10:15 AM


10:45 AM

ADAPTIVE OPTICS & IMAGING (15-min presentations) | Aulani Ballroom

Co-chaired by Lt Col Michael Martinez, Air Force Office of Scientific Research and Charles Matson, Air Force Office of Scientific Research

All-Sky Image Fusion for a Synoptic Survey Telescope in Arctic and Antarctic Domain

  • Mariusz Grotte, Georgia Insitute of Technology

Daylight Operation of a Sodium Laser Guide Star for Adaptive Optics Wave-front Sensing

  • Stuart Jefferies, Georgia State University

A Comprehensive Approach to High-Resolution Daylight Imaging for SSA

  • Michael Hart, University of Arizona

Developing Geostationary Satellite Imaging at Lowell Observatory

  • Gerard van Belle, Lowell Observatory

High Time Resolution Photon Counting 3D Imaging Sensors

  • Oswald Siegmund, University of California

SPIDER: Next Generation Chip Scale Imaging Sensor Update

  • Alan Duncan, Lockheed Martin Advanced Technology Center

12:15 PM

LUNCH | Mei Court

1:15 PM

SPACE SITUATIONAL AWARENESS (20-min presentations) | Aulani Ballroom

Co-chaired by Stacie Williams, Air Force Office of Scientific Research and Thomas Cooley, Air Force Research Laboratory

Operational Implementation of a Pc Uncertainty Construct for Conjunction Assessment Risk Analysis

  • Lauri Newman, NASA

Assessing the UN IADC Space Debris Mitigation Guidelines: A Case for Ontology-based Data Management

  • Ramona Walls, CyVerse, University of Arizona

JSpOC SSA: A Year in Review

  • Scott Putnam, U.S. Air Force, 18th Space Control Squadron

Coordination of Ground- and Space-based Optical Systems: Lessons from the SKYNET Observation and Relocation Experiment

  • Andrew Ash, Defence Science and Technology Laboratory

A Novel Method for Satellite Maneuver Prediction

  • Charlotte Shabarekh, Aptima, Inc.

2:55 PM

COFFEE BREAK (20 MINUTES) | Aulani Ballroom

3:15 PM

ORBITAL DEBRIS (15-min presentations) | Aulani Ballroom

Co-chaired by Tim Flohrer, ESA/ESOC Space Debris Office and Thomas Schildknecht, Astronomical Institute University of Bern

NASA’s Orbital Debris Optical and IR Ground-based Observing Program Utilizing the MCAT, UKIRT, and Magellan Telescopes

  • Susan Lederer, NASA Johnson Space Center

The Population of Optically Faint GEO Debris

  • Patrick Seitzer, University of Michigan

Optical Observations of Briz-M Fragments in GEO

  • Thomas Schildknecht, Astronomical Institute University of Bern

Application of Satellite Laser Ranging Techniques for Space Situational Awareness Efforts

  • Mark Shappirio, NASA/GSFC

Optical Techniques for Space Environment Management

  • Ben Greene, Space Environment Research Centre Ltd.

Laser Remote Maneuver of Space Debris at the Space Environment Research Centre

  • Matthew Bold, Lockheed Martin Space Systems

Tracking Low Earth Orbit Small Debris with GPS Satellites as Bistatic Radar

  • Craig Benson, UNSW Canberra

Sub-millimeter Size Debris Monitoring System with IDEA OSG 1

  • Masahiko Uetsuhara, Astroscale

5:15 PM – 6:30 PM

Sponsored by SAIC


THURSDAY, SEPT. 22 – Subject to Change

7:30 AM


Introduction and Q&A Discussion facilitated by Mike Gruss, SpaceNews

  • Frank A. Rose, Assistant Secretary of State for Arms Control, Verification, and Compliance
  • Atsushi Saito, Director of Space Policy Division, Concurrently Senior Negotiator for International Security Affairs, National Security Policy Division and Director of Cyber Security Policy Division, Foreign Policy Bureau, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Japan

8:30 AM – 9:30 AM

SSA POLICY FORUM: International SSA Operator Exchange | Aulani Ballroom

SSA Data Sharing Agreements have become a strategic policy tool for strengthening international partnerships and space situational awareness cooperation amongst governments and satellite operators. In 2013, the US, UK, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand signed the Combined Space Operations (CSpO) memorandum of understanding intended to strengthen deterrence, enhance resilience and optimize resources. One of CSpO goals is to support global operations and military-to- military relationships. In addition, there are also broader discussions of government-to-government sharing of SSA data to improve national security and safety of spaceflight. This session will include keynotes that updates SSA policy priorities and include a panel that will share insights from SSA operators on lessons learned and steps that can be taken to enhance sharing.


Moderated by Mike Wasson, Senior Director Operations, Analytical Graphics Inc.

  • Lt Col Scott Putnam, U.S. Air Force, Commander, 18th Space Control Squadron
  • Lt Col Rafal Borek, Chief of Section, Defence Projects, Polish Space Agency
  • Lt Col Steffan Neumann, German Space Situational Awareness Center
  • Wg Cdr Rayna Owens, Commander, Royal Air Force Fylingdales

9:30 AM

COFFEE BREAK |  Aulani Ballroom

 10 AM

INSTRUMENTATION AND OPTICAL SURVEILLANCE (15-min presentations) | Aulani Ballroom

Co-chaired by Mark Ackermann, Sandia National Laboratories and Susan Lederer, NASA Johnson Space Center

Combined Space-Based Observations of Geostationary Satellites

  • Lauchie Scott, DRDC Ottawa (CANADA)

Mission Design and Simulation Considerations for ADReS-A

  • Susanne Peters, Universität der Bundeswehr München

Matched Template Signal Processing for Coherent, Continuous Wave Laser Tracking of Space Debris

  • Shasidran Raj, Space Environmental Research Center Ltd.

GEO Satellite Characterization Through Polarimetry Using Simultaneous Observations from Nearby Optical Sensors

  • Manuel Cegarra Polo, UNSW Canberra

Multiple Observing Modes for Wide-Field Optical Surveillance of GEO Space

  • John McGraw, J.T. McGraw and Associates, LLC

Affordable Wide-field Optical Space Surveillance using sCMOS and GPUs

  • Peter Zimmer, J.T. McGraw and Associates, LLC+9

11:30 AM

LUNCH | Mei Court

12:30 PM


Automated Astrometric Analysis of Satellite Observations Using Wide-field Imaging

  • Jovan Skuljan, Defence Technology Agency

Catalog Creation for Space Situational Awareness with Optical Sensors

  • Mark Rutten, Defence Science and Technology Group

Enabling GEODSS for Space Situational Awareness (SSA)

  • Sam Wootton, The MITRE Corporation

Adapting a Planetary Science Observational Facility for Space Situational Awareness

  • Phil Bland, Curtin University

1:30 PM

SSA ALGORITHMS (20-min presentations) | Aulani Ballroom

Co-chaired by Randall Alliss, Northrop Grumman Corporation and Ryan Coder, Integrity Applications Incorporated-Pacific Defense Solutions (IAI-PDS)

Uncued Low SNR Detection with Likelihood from Image Multi Bernoulli Filter

  • Timothy Murphy, Georgia Tech

Utilizing Novel Non-traditional Sensor Tasking Approaches to Enhance the Space Situational Awareness Picture Maintained by the Space Surveillance Network

  • Ken Center, Orbit Logic

OrbitOutlook Data Processing Algorithms: Multi-Modal Fusion for Autonomous Verification and Validation of Commercial and Crowdsourced Data

  • Jeremy Raley, DARPA

Evidence-based Sensor Tasking for Space Domain Awareness

  • Andris Jaunzemis, Georgia Institute of Technology

2:50 PM

COFFEE BREAK (20 MINUTES) | Aulani Ballroom

3:10 PM

SSA ALGORITHMS (continued) | Aulani Ballroom

A Sensor Tasking Reward Function Incorporating Target Priorities

  • Steven Gehly, RMIT University

Resident Space Objects Characterization and Behavior Understanding via Machine Learning and Ontology-based Bayesian Networks

  • David Gaylor, University of Arizona

Dynamic Sensor Tasking for Space Situational Awareness via Reinforcement Learning

  • Richard Linares, University of Minnesota

False-Object Identification for Space Surveillance Catalog Maintenance

  • Mark Pittelkau, Solers, Inc.

High Performance Orbital Propagation Using a Generic Software Architecture

  • Marek Moeckel, Space Environment Research Centre Ltd.

3:15 PM – 4:30 PM


Maui  middle school students to participate in hands-on STEM activities

4:50 – 6:00 PM


Co-sponsored by SpaceNav

8:00 – 10:00 PM


Sponsored by Analytical Graphics, Inc.


FRIDAY, SEPT. 23 – Subject to Change



Introduction by Pat Patterson, Director, Advanced Concepts, Space Dynamics Laboratory

  • Jordi Puig-Suari, Professor, CubeSat Program, Cal Poly State University and CEO, Tyvak Nano-Satellite Systems, Inc.

8:00 AM – 9:00 AM

SSA POLICY FORUM: SSA and Small Satellites | Aulani Ballroom

Over the last several years, smallsats have transitioned from lab experiments to viable platforms. Thousands of small satellites – ranging from 1U cubesats weighing a few kilograms to large models the size of a dishwasher and weighing a few hundred kilograms – are currently planned to be deployed into a wide range of orbits. While the surge in smallsats is increasing the rate of innovation and lower the costs of deploying space capabilities, they also present challenges. They can be more difficult to track and identify, particularly when deployed in large numbers at once, and often lack maneuvering capabilities. And operators of larger satellites have expressed concerns that large numbers of unmaneuverable smallsats could create unmanageable increases in conjunction warnings.


Moderated by Pat Patterson, Director, Advanced Concepts, Space Dynamics Laboratory

  • Jordi Puig-Suari, Professor, CubeSat Program, Cal Poly State University; and CEO, Tyvak Nano-Satellite Systems, Inc.
  • Tim Flohrer, Space Debris Analyst, Co-lead SST, ESA/ESOC
  • Bhavya Lal, Research Staff Member, IDA/Science and Technology Policy Institute
  • Diana McKissock, SSA Sharing Cell Lead, 614th AOC, Space Debris Office, European Space Agency

9:00 AM


9:30 AM

ASTRODYNAMICS (20-min presentations) | Aulani Ballroom

Co-chaired by Moriba Jah, The University of Arizona and Paul Schumacher, Air Force Research Laboratory

Ground-based Tracking of Geosynchronous Space Objects with a GM-CPHD Filter

  • Brandon Jones, The University of Texas at Austin

Schmidt-Kalman Filter with Polynomial Chaos Expansion for Orbit Determination of Space Objects

  • Yang Yang, RMIT University

Homotopy Particle Filter for Ground-Based Tracking of Satellites at GEO

  • Moses Chan, Lockheed Martin

On the Confidence Region of Least Squares Solutions for Single-arc Observations

  • Gennaro Principe, University of Southampton

Joint Target Detection and Tracking Filter for Chilbolton Advanced Meteoroligical Radar Data Processing

  • Andrey Pak, University of Chile

11:30 AM

LUNCH | Mei Court

12:30 PM

ASTRODYNAMICS (continued) | Aulani Ballroom

KRATOS: Kollision Risk Assessment Tool in Orbital Element Spaces

  • Navraj Singh, Numerica Corporation

Spatial Density Maps from a Debris Cloud

  • Liam Healy, Naval Research Laboratory

When Does the Uncertainty Become Non-Gaussian?

  • Kyle Alfriend, Texas A&M University

Unexplained Momentum Impulse Transfer Events (MITEs)

  • Michael Bantel, ExoAnalytic Solutions Inc.

Synthesis of Disparate Optical Imaging Data for Space Domain Awareness

  • Michael Schneider, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

Towards Relaxing the Spherical Solar Radiation Pressure Model for Accurate Orbit Predictions

  • Michael Lachut, Space Environment Research Centre Ltd.

Reconstructing Close Proximity Events in Geosynchronous Orbit Using Sparse, Multi-Aspect Observations

  • Patrick Loerch, Orbital ATK

2:30 PM

COFFEE BREAK | Aulani Ballroom

2:50 PM

NON-RESOLVED OBJECT CHARACTERIZATION (15-min presentations) | Aulani Ballroom

Standardized Photometric Calibrations for Panchromatic SSA Sensors

  • Philip Castro, Applied Optimization Inc.

Open-Filter Optical SSA Analysis Considerations

  • John Lambert, Cornerstone Defense

A Discrimination Analysis of Sloan and Johnson Photometric Systems for Non-Resolved Object Characterization

  • Tamara Payne, Applied Optimization Inc.

Comparison of ENVISAT’s Attitude Simulation and Real Optical and SLR Observations in Order to Refine the Satellite Attitude Model

  • Jiri Silha, Astronomical Institute University of Bern

Non-imaging Characterization Assessment of Shedding Events from Derelict Satellites near Geosynchronous Orbit (GEO)

  • Tom Kelecy, Applied Defense Solutions

Shape Estimation from Lightcurves including Constraints from Orbit Determination

  • Jay McMahon, University of Colorado

A High Fidelity Approach to Data Simulation for Space Situational Awareness Missions

  • Susan Hagerty, Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp.

4:35 PM


5:30 PM – 8:30 PM