Tom Keane: Empowering space development off the planet with Azure

As our understanding of space and its environment expands, we rely on government and industry partnerships to accomplish complex missions. Organizations need more support to share the same ground base, limiting their collaboration ability as cloud services engineer and software developer Tom Keane recalls. With the advent of technologies like Cloud, GCP, and IoT, Microsoft Azure is uniquely positioned as a single platform that enables users of these services across many industries with an easy way to work together in parallel. Any developer can design and build an IoT application or a cloud service and easily share their code with targeted developers, who will integrate and customize their application for specific use cases. 


Testing AI For Astronaut Safety 

Tom Keane is at the ultimate edge for astronaut safety. At NASA, Space at the Edge is a multi-year, multi-discipline research effort designed to understand better how AI can help astronauts and scientists reach and operate in space. 


There are many potential applications for AI in space exploration: an autonomous exploration of our Solar System, mission control for missions beyond Earth’s orbit, and more. The research includes partnerships with Intel and NVIDIA to develop new AI technologies for solving complex problems in space robotics. Led by Tom Keane, the team is also prototyping AI algorithms for crew safety, mission safety, and cognitive modeling of humans in the space environment.


Cloud Services Engineer Tom Keane

Analytics for spaceborne data using Azure Orbital


NASA is also a partner in the GCP Cloud Summit, a one-day event to educate our community on Azure’s capabilities as an analytics platform. Tom Keane recalls how analytics for spaceborne data using Azure Orbital is a collaboration between NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center and Microsoft Research. 


This project aims to improve spaceborne data collection and processing reliability and robustness by developing new tools that automatically classify, classify, predict, and visualize datasets before they are collected in orbit. He is a two-time winner of the MIT $100K Entrepreneurship Competition in 2005 and 2006, and has received multiple awards, including the prestigious Science & Technology Council Award (Society of American Foresters) for development of low-cost video surveillance techniques and security systems that are now used around the world by institutions, governments, banks and retailers.