RS21 takes 1st in Hyperspace Challenge - Albuquerque Journal

RS21 takes 1st in Hyperspace Challenge

Charles Rath, founder of RS21. (Adolphe Pierre-Louis/Albuquerque Journal)

Copyright © 2020 Albuquerque Journal

Albuquerque-based data analytics firm RS21 rocketed to first place in this year’s Hyperspace Challenge on Thursday with new technology to predict failures on satellites before they happen.

The company competed against 10 other firms and two university teams, winning $25,000 and opening the doors for potential future contracts with space-related government agencies. Two out-of-state companies, Seattle-based Starfish Space and Florida-based Space Domain Awareness, won $15,000 and $10,000 second- and third-place prizes, respectively.

The online pitch event culminated two months of work that paired participating companies with government contractors to develop new technology to equip satellites and spacecraft with remote, autonomous ability to manage problems.

It’s the third annual Hyperspace Challenge, which launched in 2018 to help accelerate technology development for the U.S. Department of Defense and entities like NASA to resolve critical issues in space. The Albuquerque-based program is jointly managed by the Air Force Research Laboratory at Kirtland Air Force Base and the ABQid business accelerator run by CNM Ingenuity, which oversees all of Central New Mexico Community College’s commercial endeavors.

RS21 created a machine-learning algorithm modeled on data analytics methods used in precision medicine to predict patient outcomes, said president and CEO Charles Rath.

“We can predict the likelihood of certain health events by looking at a person’s medical records, demographics, age, symptoms and other data points,” Rath told the Journal. “We applied those same methods to satellites, which produce lots of data to predict when satellites will fail.”

The accelerator potentially opened a new space-related market for RS21, which developed an array of contacts with government agencies through the program that could lead to future contracts, Rath said.

That’s the central goal of the Hyperspace Challenge – to connect private industry with government scientists, engineers and contractors to resolve problems, said Program Director Roxanne Aragon.

“We’re thrilled with the results of this cohort, especially given the shift to virtual formats because of the pandemic,” Aragon said.

The participants met with government representatives in virtual networking events.

“It was kind of like speed dating for the teams to engage with government folks,” Aragon said. “Evaluators worked to assess technology proposals and present feedback.”

Two other New Mexico-based companies also competed, along with New Mexico State University, since the program was opened this year to university researchers for the first time.

“This year was a tremendous success,” said U.S. Space Force Accelerator Program Director Gabe Mounce. “It highlighted the value of bringing together a diverse cohort of entrepreneurs and students to demonstrate how cutting-edge innovation in the private sector can be brought to bear for National Security Space autonomy problems.”

Home » News » Albuquerque News » RS21 takes 1st in Hyperspace Challenge

Insert Question Legislature form in Legis only stories

Albuquerque Journal and its reporters are committed to telling the stories of our community.

• Do you have a question you want someone to try to answer for you? Do you have a bright spot you want to share?
   We want to hear from you. Please email

taboola desktop

ABQjournal can get you answers in all pages


Questions about the Legislature?
Albuquerque Journal can get you answers
Email addresses are used solely for verification and to speed the verification process for repeat questioners.
'The Lost Archive' a collection of enjoyable realistic, historical ...
ABQnews Seeker
These 22 short stories, some previously ... These 22 short stories, some previously published, demonstrates writing that is crisp, smart, accessible and engaging.
PBS documentary looks at the life of solar power ...
ABQnews Seeker
"The Sun Queen" airs at 8 ... "The Sun Queen" airs at 8 p.m. Tuesday, April 4, on New Mexico PBS, channel 5.1, and is broadcast under the American Experience series. ...
Canna fairly easy to grow, come in wide varieties
ABQnews Seeker
The canna will want soil that ... The canna will want soil that can retain some moisture, but won't do too well if sitting in a puddle either.
New Mexico Photographic Art Show brings 188 works to ...
ABQnews Seeker
The 14th annual New Mexico Photographic ... The 14th annual New Mexico Photographic Art Show runs through April 18, in the Fine Arts Building at Expo New Mexico with work by ...
Albuquerque Half Marathon gears up for a fast pace ...
ABQnews Seeker
This year's edition of the Albuquerque ... This year's edition of the Albuquerque Half Marathon kicks off on Saturday, April 15.
Mountain bluebirds are often overlooked but gorgeous
ABQnews Seeker
The mountain bluebird is 7.25 inches ... The mountain bluebird is 7.25 inches long with a sky blue back, a whitish belly and a dark, short pointed beak. The female is ...
A small northern New Mexico community is trying to ...
ABQnews Seeker
The mission church at El Macho ... The mission church at El Macho has been a reassuring presence in Pecos Canyon for more than 165 years.
'Millet' for the win: State spelling bee finalists go ...
ABQnews Seeker
Albuquerque Academy sixth grader Keith Lee ... Albuquerque Academy sixth grader Keith Lee spells the winning word and will represent NM at the national bee
'Important Works on Paper' covers the span of Picasso's ...
ABQnews Seeker
Santa Fe's LewAllen Galleries is showcasing ... Santa Fe's LewAllen Galleries is showcasing Pablo Picasso's prints in "Celebrating Picasso's Legacy: Important Works on Paper" through May 6.