Software for Space, with Epsilon3’s Laura Crabtree


We’re 20 weeks into publishing the Pathfinder podcast—and we have a great episode in store for you to mark the occasion. Our guest is Laura Crabtree, cofounder and CEO of Epsilon3. Today’s episode is sponsored by Spaced Ventures, the planet’s first space investment portal. Spaced Ventures has recently launched an effort to open an investment round into SpaceX. Find out more at


About Epsilon3: The startup has developed an operating system (OS) for space missions. The streamlined software tool helps space companies keep tabs on complex engineering, testing, and operational procedures. Epsilon3’s customers include Inversion, Orbit Fab, Virgin Galactic, Firefly, Stoke, Stratolaunch, and Privateer, among other companies.

And more about our guest : Laura began her space career at Northrop Grumman, before moving on to SpaceX, where she helped put the US back in the human spaceflight biz. She worked on the Dragon ops team and was on the console for the spacecraft’s first flight, its first mission to the ISS, and subsequent commercial crew programs. She also worked on the F9 and Dragon Recovery teams.


0:00 — Intro 
3:06 — Putting the US back in the human spaceflight business 
5:12 — Other highlights from Laura’s time as a SpaceX’er 
7:43 — The state of play in space mission management 
10:07 — Why are space missions managed and tracked on pen, paper, Word, and Excel? 
15:23 — Quantifying Epsilon3’s effectiveness 
19:16 — Building industry tools that everybody needs 
21:53 — The beauty of elegant software tools 
25:13 — When you got started, was it a non-obvious or counterintuitive bet to think the space industry was big enough to support its own software startup? 28:28 — A discussion of Epsilon3’s customer base 
31:36 — Meme cameo 
35:12 — Going through Y Combinator 
38:43 — Growing with current users and acquiring new customers 
49:15 — Where the Epsilon3 name cames from