According to a 2014 report from the Space Foundation, space exploration and technology is a $314 billion market and – with major projects underway including SpaceX and Blue Origin – Texas is well-positioned to capitalize. Thirty space startups are launched annually, and Denton-based Kubos is poised to take off, by marrying the creativity of traditional software developers with the commercial space industry – creating the first open-source platform for nano-satellites. Its mission is to accelerate the New Space Race by making satellite design, development and deployment as accessible as possible. Early results indicate the software can cut development time by half, and overall project costs by 75%.
According to Kubos, half of the battle is helping companies wrap their heads around the scale of space, or nano-satellites. For example, a CubeSat is only the size of a coffee mug, but the distance between Low Earth Orbit and Geostationary Orbit is over 20,000 miles. Kubos's service helps non-traditional companies understand the benefits gained through leveraging satellite technology. Through full service CubeSat missions, customers can accomplish everything from testing existing products in space to developing new products and revenue opportunities.
We picked Kubos co-founder and COO Tyler Browder’s brain to learn more:
What's the Hardest Lesson you've learned Starting Up?
So far, the hardest lesson I've learned is how to stay in the pit. How to stay engaged, in the lowest emotional point of Kubos’ young life, and stay there, to fight it, and figure it out. ‘Cause you have to. There are no other options at this point. I remember Marshall (CEO of Kubos) and I in a crappy apartment on a business in San Francisco, and after having someone blow up all our ideas, and we had to sit there and figure it out. There was nowhere to go and no one to help us. We had to do it. It was a terrible experience that changed everything.
What's the biggest Advantage to starting up in your City?
Denton is a great place to start a business. We have a strong tech community here filled with people who are passionate about tech and startups. We have a city government that is putting their money where their mouth is and doing things that help the community. Denton in general is a great place to experience cultures of all types. Denton is also a part of the North Texas startup community which is amazing and supportive.
What emerging Trends are you Excited About?
The continuing trend of cheaper electronics and more launch opportunities mean that more small satellites will soon be deployed, in large numbers, to provide internet access to underserved populations.
What's your wildest Long Term Vision for this product?
To change the way people across the globe access information, collect data, and expand human understanding by accelerating satellite development with new technology, new ways of approaching remote sensing and communications.
If your Startup Were Animal, what would it be?
Monarch Butterfly – They are small, beautiful, and can travel great distances. I think that sums us up.
Follow Kubos: @KubosTech
Image Credit: Flickr/Sweetie187