Estonian computer scientist Dan Bogdanov is working with the US Department of Defense on a 700,000-euro contract to develop a system to prevent satellite collisions.
Since the exact locations of around 6,500 existing satellites are considered state secrets, collisions can and will occur, reported ETV. The first such crash happened above Siberia in February 2009 when the Russian communications satellite Kosmos 2251 collided with the Iridium 33, a privately-owned US satellite.
The 30-year-old Pärnu native Bogdanov had previously worked at the Estonian R&D company Cybernetica developing Sharemind3, a program that is able to multiply two numbers without seeing either number. Its potential uses include compiling a list of a nation's richest people without revealing sensitive information. Similar principles would be applied to the satellite system.
Bogdanov's contract with the US agency expires in 2014.