Pathfinder Lucky #0013 with Giuseppe Santangelo

Pathfinder cover art

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. 

Sneak peek…

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: