Today’s Pathfinder takes us back and forth across the Kármán line plenty of times.
Our guest is Giuseppe Santangelo, president at Red Cat Holdings ($RCAT) and founder of Skypersonic. The company develops drones that can be remotely piloted from thousands of miles away, and operated in high-risk, confined, and GPS-denied locations.
- Santangelo is no stranger to space. He joined Thales Alenia in 1999, and across the 2000s, developed space hardware for NASA and ESA.
- Fun fact: Skypersonic pivoted from hypersonic, suborbital transportation vehicles to drones. Nothing like a good startup pivot story!
- In 2021, NASA awarded Skypersonic a five-year contract to provide drone and rover software, hardware, and services/support for a simulated Mars mission.
Martian tests: Skypersonic recently completed a 15-day test of its drone hardware and software at Mt. Etna, an Italian volcano with Martian-esque terrain. Pilots in Houston controlled Skypersonic’s drones, validating long-distance, low-latency flight technology (with Starlink terminals) and testing operations in a Mars-like environment.
Along with the above topics, Ryan and Giuseppe discuss:
- The Italian space industry
- How space tech enables drones
- Getting acquired by Red Cat
- Being on the management team of a publicly traded company
- De-risking deeptech business models
- Star Wars or Star Trek?
- Are we alone in the universe?
So, yeah, just your light Tuesday morning conversation topics. This was a fun one and you don’t want to miss it. Catch Pathfinder #0013 using the links below: