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US Department of Defense working closely with Cal Poly's CubeSat program

Geovanni Ximénez-García
Rear Admiral Brian Brown tours the Cal Poly CubeSat lab in San Luis Obispo.

Space debris and the location of satellites is a top concern for the U.S. military's missile program which is why leaders from the Department of Defense are working closely with scientists in Cal Poly’s CubeSat program. 

Rear Admiral Brian Brown visited Cal Poly on Friday to tour the CubeSat lab and learn more about the current state of technology in the field.

He met with leaders in the growing CubeSat industry a technology developed at Cal Poly to find more ways to easily track these micro-satellites. The admiral says Vandenberg Air Force Base monitors space traffic to ensure safe routes for its missions.

"Partnerships are huge," Brown said. "Across the board we have partnerships with foreign partners. We have partnerships with commercial enterprises. Probably most importantly, we have partnerships with laboratories in academic institutions. Cal Poly happens to be one of them."

Brown is based at Vandenberg, where many of these small satellites have also been launched in recent years.

"Cal Poly is the starting place of the CubeSat and has been at the forefront of the CubeSat revolution since '99," he said.

A focus of the admiral’s visit was to sit down with Cal Poly staff and officials to figure out how they can strengthen their partnership and increase collaboration.