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Cybernetica partners with European Space Agency to enhance space safety

Cybernetica is participating in the European Space Agency (ESA) GSTP programme to improve space safety. 

The project ShareSat aims to enhance space safety, with its primary objective being the demonstration of confidential computing using multi-party computation (MPC).

The solution will facilitate confidential collaboration among owners of satellites and space object catalogues, enabling them to collectively assess and mitigate collision risks without compromising sensitive data. This approach will see the development of a secure cooperation service utilising Cybernetica’s multi-party computation technology Sharemind MPC.

Cybernetica developed an early prototype that inspired ShareSat in 2015 in the DARPA PROCEED programme. ShareSat will raise the technical readiness level of the solution and introduce confidential computing to space object catalogue service providers.

“As secure cooperation over organisational and state borders is difficult, both technical advancement from initial experimentation and international trust building are among the challenges that Cybernetica team will address during the project,“ said Dr. Dan Bogdanov, Chief Scientific Officer of Cybernetica.

“In case of a close approach between two spacecraft sharing data, such as trajectories, between the operators is a necessity to arrive at a common understanding of the collision risk, and to take mitigation action if needed. However, not all operators can share data openly. The ShareSat activity paves the way to allow such operators to share data in an encrypted manner while still allowing to perform the computations necessary to derive a common understanding,” said Dr. Klaus Merz, Senior Collision Avoidance Analyst at ESA’s Space Debris Office.

“We therefore hope that the technology developed in this activity will lead to an increase of operators coordinating mutual close approaches and thus increasing overall safety of operations in space.” added Merz.

The project ShareSat commenced in January 2024 and is scheduled for completion by June 2025.

The cooperation takes place in the frame of the General Support Technology Programme (GSTP) under which the European space industry develops leading edge space technologies that enable missions to discover the Universe, understand our environment, navigate, educate and save lives.

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