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Maxar’s Jim McClelland: Tech Advances Fuel Smallsat Industry“™s Transformation

Jim McClelland VP Maxar Technologies
Jim McClelland, VP, Maxar Technologies

Jim McClelland, vice president of mission architecture at Maxar Technologies, said the small satellite industry is now more willing to take some risks, launch and learn from those launches driven by technological advances in smallsats, SpaceNews reported Wednesday.

“It“™s been a very exciting transformation of the industry,“ he said Wednesday at the SmallSat Symposium. “I have to actually, oddly enough, give a lot of credit to the cubesat guys.“ 

In August 2020, McClelland joined Maxar to help the company diversify its space infrastructure business and further advance its entry into U.S. national security and civil markets. He held management and technical roles at DigitalGlobe, now part of Maxar, from 1996 through 2011.

“Certainly one of my reasons for returning to Maxar was to bring more of that disruptive perspective to the smallsat side of what we“™re trying to do,“ McClelland said. “One of the things that is really kind of fun to watch is that the ecosystem of all the suppliers is really starting to get some momentum and be fed by the fact that there“™s all of these different activities going on and all this interest.“

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Written by Jane Edwards

is a staff writer at Executive Mosaic, where she writes for ExecutiveBiz about IT modernization, cybersecurity, space procurement and industry leaders’ perspectives on government technology trends.

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