Hawaiʻi's Technology Community

Featured Techie: Astrodynamicist Moriba Jah

We had the pleasure of e-meeting Dr. Jah on TechHui a few months ago. We were excited to hear about the type of work he is doing on Maui at ASTRIA and AFRL in the areas of
orbit determination,
Kalman filtering and
data fusion. Moriba graciously agreed to share more details with us as a keynote speaker at last month's TechHui Conference (
presentation attached.) His talk was extremely well received. We were inundated with follow up questions via email including a request for his presentation from the Lt. Governor's office. We thoroughly enjoyed meeting Dr. Jah in person at the conference and again last week on Maui. Its an honor to have a person of Moriba's caliber as a member of our community. We hope you enjoy reading a bit more about this month's Featured Techie, Dr. Moriba Jah.

Moriba Kemessia Jah, Ph.D. Director Advanced Sciences & Technology Research Institute for Astrodynamics (ASTRIA) Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) Maui Space Surveillance Systems Branch Dr. Moriba Jah is the director of ASTRIA at AFRL. He received his B.S. in Aerospace Engineering from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Prescott, Arizona, and his M.S. and Ph.D. in Aerospace Engineering Sciences from the University of Colorado at Boulder specializing in astrodynamics and statistical orbit determination. Before joining AFRL in 2007, he was a spacecraft navigator for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena, CA, serving on Mars Global Surveyor, Mars Odyssey, Mars Express (joint mission with ESA), Mars Exploration Rovers, Hayabusa (joint mission with JAXA), and the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. While at JPL he also was the principal investigator of a new approach to determine the position and velocity states of aerobraking spacecraft via the unscented Kalman filtering of intertial measurement unit data. This work earned him a NASA Space Act Award “for the creative development of a scientific contribution which has been determined to be of significant value in the advancement of the space and aeronautical activities of NASA, and is entitled: Inertial Measurements for Aeroassisted Navigation (IMAN)”. Dr Jah is the Chair of the American Astronautical Society’s (AAS) Space Surveillance Technical Committee, and a member of the AAS Space Flight Mechanics Technical Committee. He is also an Adviser for the National Research Council.

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Comment by Ian Gilyeat on September 8, 2009 at 3:54pm
I also was not able to attend the conference but the subject of data fusion seems very similar to a discussion in the database marketing world that has been around for decades. I'm refering to the traditional merge/purge process. Often in this activity there arises a discussion about whether to merge the data or purge the data. A merge pulls data from many sources (e.g. multi-sourced data) and creates a more complete picture of the prospect record. The flip side of course is the purge process that deletes and eliminates duplicate sets of data. Would like to see more on Dr. Jah's work in this area.
Comment by Daniel Leuck on August 6, 2009 at 2:52pm
Hi Nate - Thank you for the spelling correction :-) There will be a video available soon. Jay Fidell and Nicole Hori from ThinkTech recorded all the keynotes.
Comment by Nate Sanders on August 6, 2009 at 1:12pm
Wasn't able to attend the conference, but seeing Moriba's talk was the #1 reason I wanted to go. I don't suppose there's a video of his talk anywhere? Maybe a "Conference Proceedings DVD" for sale? :)

-- Nate


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