Working Together to Secure Space 


Participating SOBS affiliates include members of public and private research institutions from every continent and represent such institutions and agencies as:

  • NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory
  • NASA Planetary Defense Coordination Office
  • US Air Force Research Laboratory
  • NATO
  • United Nations
  • Federal Aviation Administration
  • University of Hawaii
  • UNSW/ADFA in Australia
  • Astronomical Institute at the University of Bern

UA Strengths/Synergies

UA researchers:

  • Built the HiRISE camera that revealed evidence of water on Mars.
  • Are spearheading the OSIRIS-REx mission, which will take samples from a distant asteroid and return them to Earth to be studied by UA researchers.
  • Have discovered, in the UA’s Spacewatch and Catalina Sky Survey programs, more than half of all known near-Earth objects.

In addition, the UA:

  • Runs the NSF’s $100 million CyVerse, which has engineered a cybersecure plant database infrastructure that will transform big data management in the space domain.
  • Is advancing data management, orbital navigation, artificial intelligence and supersonic flight capabilities to guide future space travel and exploration.
  • Owns or manages 20 telescopes, with the Giant Magellan Telescope and Large Synoptic Survey Telescope coming online in the next few years.

Partner Highlights

  • Four UA Colleges – Engineering, Agriculture and Life Sciences, Science, and Optical Sciences  – and nine departments are actively involved in the SOBS initiative.
  • Arizona has the fifth largest aerospace and defense economy in the nation and is home to Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Fort Huachuca, Raytheon and other key players with whom the UA has strong relationships.
  • The UA College of Science is ranked No. 1 among observational, theoretical, and space astronomy programs in the United States. And, it is the only university in the continental United States with its own radio telescope.
  • The University offers engineering and computer science expertise in orbital mechanics; spacecraft attitude dynamics, guidance, estimation, and control; spacecraft proximity operations; artificial intelligence and machine learning; ontologies and data management strategies.