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The image resolution of commercial satellites has dramatically improved over the years, making commercial remote sensing capability a more important component of Defense Department and intelligence community needs.

  • Todd Harrison, director of the Aerospace Security Project at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, said the U.S. government should buy as a service when it comes to commercial remote sensing capabilities, which will require a “paradigm shift.”
  • The main benefit of commercial space sensing systems for national security is that they can complement government systems, said Harrison.
  • He said the regulatory environment puts the U.S. at a disadvantage because it limits companies to quality standards of foreign countries.

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