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Space Is the Frontier for This Arlington-Based Startup

Sponsored by Monday Properties and written by ARLnow, Startup Monday is a weekly column that profiles Arlington-based startups, founders, and other local technology news. Monday Properties is proudly featuring Shirlington Gateway. The new 2800 Shirlington recently delivered a brand-new lobby and upgraded fitness center. Experience a prime location and enjoy being steps from Shirlington Village. Spec suites with bright open plans and modern finishes are under construction and will deliver soon!

A Shirlington-based tech startup has received a fresh vote of confidence in its work, in the form of a follow-on investment from a key funder.

NOVI is “developing the next generation of integrated hardware and inspection analytics solutions” for everything from inspecting asphalt to deploying satellites. It recently received an investment from CIT GAP Funds, a state-funded investment organization that makes seed-stage investments in Virginia startups.

The amount of the investment, which followed an initial round of funding in 2019, was not disclosed.

According to an announcement last week, the new capital “will be used to accelerate their commercial go‐to‐market strategy and support key hires.”

NOVI operates in the infrastructure and manufacturing industries, but it’s the offerings for the space and defense sectors that were highlighted in the announcement.

NOVI is focused on combining machine learning and data fusion to provide a new approach for edge intelligence in ground, aerial and Low Earth Orbit (LEO) applications. Today’s small-satellites represent single-payload “point-solutions” without on-board data fusion or processing. NOVI’s patent-pending, reconfigurable, additively-manufactured structures enable flexible and rapid customization as a low-cost, experimental test platform to accommodate different payload types, and on-board processing and data fusion for coincident gathering of multiple signals.

“Over the last year, NOVI has rapidly grown our team and received five new contracts. We have a unique opportunity to capture the growing demand for multi-sensor platforms, and to move space activity into the next generation of satellites,” said Dr. Amit Mehra, Managing Partner, NOVI. “Our core capabilities are centered around development of aerospace hardware that is tightly coupled with data fusion and machine-learning based processing of multi-sensor data, which leads to significant reductions in capital cost for constellation deployments. We are grateful for the continued support of CIT GAP Funds, which will enable us to build out and execute on our go-to-market strategy.”

The firm — based in an office at 2800 Shirlington Road, across the street from Shirlington Village — has won a number of government contracts and grants recently, including from the Air Force and the National Science Foundation.

“Since CIT’s initial investment in 2019, NOVI has proven their potential to disrupt the new space industry,” CIT GAP Funds Senior Investment Director Marco Rubin said, in a statement.

“The need for low earth orbit constellations is growing, such as earth imaging and remote sensing, IoT, weather forecasting, high bandwidth connectivity, and a host of other critical use cases,” Rubin said. “NOVI’s innovations will have an impact on the future of space activity, and CIT looks forward to their continued success.”

Photo by NASA on Unsplash

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