AICRAFT, an Adelaide-based edge computing developer, has successfully launched its edge computing module named Pulsar to set a record for big data processing in orbit. According to a business agreement with NewSpace India Ltd (NSIL), the commercial arm of the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO), Pulsar was launched from the Satish Dhawan Space Center in India on board the JANUS-1 satellite of Antaris Space.
The AICRAFT edge computing module Pulsar, which is a crucial component of the JANUS-1 satellite, will perform ultra-fast processing of space data using artificial intelligence at lowest power consumption.
The company has proven in its initial field tests that it is capable of classifying 1,250 images of Earth Observation data in roughly 10 seconds. This was accomplished by utilizing the device in low-power mode, which the company anticipates will enable 24/7 computation, even on “shoe box-size” nanosatellites, as opposed to the 10 minutes per day with existing market solutions.
Pulsar can easily switch between low-power and high-performance modes, which can accelerate its low-power processing by a further four times. The 95mm x 90mm x 25mm Pulsar has a power/performance ratio that is currently unmatched among devices of this size.
Depending on the host satellite, mission duration, and orbit, the module has the advantage of being extremely configurable, making it durable but also inexpensive for a range of clients and New Space entrants.
Users can create algorithms for Pulsar using the same open-source software they use to create algorithms for desktop computers because the module supports more than 20 of the most well-liked machine learning frameworks.
According to Dr Tony Scoleri, CEO of AICRAFT, in just nine months, they were able to develop powerful, space-ready AI technology with the help of the JANUS-1 mission, which also served as a launchpad for AICRAFT to integrate into the space ecosystem.
Moreover, Dr. Scoleri said the collaboration with US-based Antaris Space was made possible by their Australian subsidiary company, which is also a part of the Aurora Space Cluster, a SmartSat CRC startup project.
Antaris, a developer of software platforms for the space industry, used its own software from beginning to end to completely conceptualize, construct, and manufacture a satellite in the first cloud-based environment worldwide.
Eight organizations from seven different countries electronically collaborated to create the satellite JANUS-1 using Antaris’ cloud-based platform, which includes open APIs and fundamental open-source components.
A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed between AICRAFT and Antaris during the Australian Space Forum in Adelaide, South Australia, in March 2022.
From design to launch readiness, the spacecraft JANUS-1 took about 10 months, costing 75% less than similar satellite missions. The mission’s sole Australian payload, the edge computing module Pulsar from AICRAFT, was created and produced in Australia.
“This is an exciting flight for us, and we are already in conversations with potential customers for our next mission.” Dr. Scoleri commented on how the future looks for AICRAFT after the landmark JANUS-1 mission.