PlanetiQ picks partner for building next-gen weather satellites - DC


Jun. 25, 2015 7:32 am

PlanetiQ picks partner for building next-gen weather satellites

The Bethesda-based weather observation company has enlisted Blue Canyon Technologies to build its fleet of micro-satellites.

PlanetiQ is planning to send 12 micro-satellites into space over the next two years.

(Photo by Flickr user US Air Force, used under a Creative Commons license)

What weighs just 1.5 kilograms and is small enough to fit into a 10-centimeter box? If you guessed “Pyxis,” you win.

Bethesda-based PlanetiQ announced Wednesday that it will be working with a Colorado company to produce its 12 weather observation micro-satellites slated to launch in the next two years.

Pyxis will travel on the satellites, where it will track how signals bend in relation to atmospheric conditions. This will enable the sensor to measure temperature, pressure and water vapor from above Earth.


PlanetiQ’s “Pyxis” GPS sensor. (Courtesy image)

Blue Canyon Technologies will build out the prototypes from Boulder, where the company has opened up a second office for its aerospace engineering team.

“Weather is the next commercial space frontier, as demand grows not only for better forecasts of day-to-day weather, severe storms and hurricanes, but also for weather and climate data solutions that enhance weather readiness, support risk management and increase business intelligence,” PlanetiQ President and CEO Anne Hale Miglarese said in a press release.


Earlier this month, the company announced it had started testing a new sensor technology.

Founded in 2012 and currently employing about 10 full-time workers, PlanetiQ projects that its 12 satellites will capture more than 8 million temperature, pressure and water vapor observations per day.

Lalita Clozel

Lalita Clozel was the former DC Lead Reporter. She has written for, the Los Angeles Times and Philadelphia City Paper. As a student at the University of Pennsylvania, she wrote for The Daily Pennsylvanian, covering legal affairs, city politics and labor unions.


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