IBM takes off with space AI company Ubotica Technologies

image of satellite over planet Earth with northern lights in the sky | IBM and Ubotica

IBM has announced a partnership with space AI company Ubotica Technologies to simplify the process of developers deploying AI applications securely and rapidly to satellites and generating insights from data on the edge in space. Ubotica will leverage IBM cloud infrastructure and components.

Since 2020, Ubotica has been providing space AI capabilities to the European Space Agency and NASA JPL and other customers. This year the company announced its CogniSAT-6, the first satellite to use space AI to autonomously schedule image tasking and generate insights by processing image sensor data on board the satellite.

Additionally, Ubotica has partnered with IBM to build several services on IBM Cloud with the goal of providing customer developer teams with the ability to directly deploy their AI inference models to Ubotica’s space AI platforms on LEO satellites.

The initial install is a Red Hat OpenShift Kubernetes Service (ROKS) cluster where Ubotica will be deploying components to create a hybrid cloud AI platform. Ubotica’s initial architecture will also include components from the Open Data Hub reference architecture and align with the underlying implementation of and Watson OpenScale.

Through IBM Partner Plus, Ubotica is accessing IBM technology, as well as business and developer expertise and co-creation support. As a new member of Partner Plus, the IBM New Partner Accelerator has enabled Ubotica to leverage IBM’s market demand engine, go-to-market collateral and IBM Cloud credits to help develop its customer space AI model deployment process.

Both companies are now collaborating to develop an enterprise AI model management system integrated into industry standard source control resources and targeting Ubotica’s emulator and hardware technologies.

In a blog, Brian Quinn, chief strategy officer at Ubotica and Gavin Shorten, IBM Ireland innovation program leader, said: “Ubotica is delivering its CogniSAT space AI compute platform on-board satellites so that AI inference can be performed on data in space. Earth Observation companies collect many petabytes of data per day.

“The data is stored and processed on the ground, presenting a large-scale challenge. To generate timely application-specific value from all this data, customers need to create insights using edge-based data processing analysis. Like all data and AI use cases, it is critical to address and solve the challenge of analyzing and managing data in these quantities. Ubotica has partnered with IBM to streamline customer’s space AI applications, deployment and ground-based cloud data processing operations to help manage this data challenge.”