VP of Launch and Founding Team at Planet
In 2011, Mike Safyan joined the eight-person founding team at Planet where the company was building the first iterations of its Dove satellite in a Cupertino garage. Since then, Planet has expanded to a global organization leading the NewSpace industry, with the world's largest fleet of Medium-resolution and High-resolution Earth Imaging satellites.
Mike is responsible for Planet's Launch strategy and has overseen the launch of over 350 Planet satellites across 22 launch attempts. Mike received his B.S. of Aerospace Engineering at UCLA, and an M.Sc. of Space Studies at the International Space University in Strasbourg, France. He started his career working on lunar rover designs for the Barcelona Moon Team competing for the Google Lunar X-Prize and then joined the PhoneSat team at NASA Ames where he worked as a Systems Engineer developing ultra-low-cost CubeSats utilizing smartphone technologies.
In 2018, Mike received the SSPI Promise Award, which recognizes outstanding achievement by satellite industry professionals under the age of 35.