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April 24, 2023 in Uncategorized

Chiral’s last (public) issue

I have been writing Chiral since August 2021, and I’ve been lucky to connect to some amazing people through this experience, including my teammates Tina Wong, Shiva Yamamoto, Taylor Hershberger,…
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April 17, 2023 in Uncategorized

North Korea sharpens its nuclear spear

Author’s Note: Another drill weekend - thanks to Tina Wong for leading the data pull this week! Weekly Deep Dive Having served a year in South Korea, I’m well aware…
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April 10, 2023 in Uncategorized

Classified data – a perfect blockchain use case

Weekly Deep Dive The latest intelligence leak of just over 50 Top Secret and Secret documents over Discord is the latest playback of a broken record. This time, the damaging…
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April 3, 2023 in Uncategorized

What Dubai does better than the Pentagon

Author’s Note: Still catching up on emails post-spring break. By the way, check out this article from a colleague (Morgan Mahlock, formerly In-Q-Tel and currently a scout for Bessemer Venture…
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March 27, 2023 in Uncategorized

Finding a needle in a stack of needles: the story of cyber

Author’s Note: Got my time zones wrong! Am currently in Dubai. Hooray spring break. Weekly Deep Dive We’re covering GreyNoise, a cybersecurity company that we covered in June 2022 when…
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March 20, 2023 in Uncategorized

Special Forces, don’t recreate the wheel (or the dashboard)

Author’s Note: Am traveling at the moment and will be making a stop in Tel Aviv for a few days. Any suggestions for who I should reach out to and…
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March 13, 2023 in Uncategorized

What DoD should take away from the SVB crisis

Author’s Note: Had another Marine reserves weekend - brutal. But no better way to continue existing in the weeds of defense and to understand the needs of the warfighter. My…
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March 6, 2023 in Uncategorized

To counter China, Eric Schmidt and the Marines agree; does Joe Biden?

Author’s Note: We used generative AI to do some of our digest-related work this week - what do you think? Can you notice any differences in quality? Also, I am…
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February 27, 2023 in Uncategorized

The company reinventing satellite imagery access as we know it

Author’s Note: We’re introducing our first company deep dive this week, courtesy of our contributor Shiva Khanna Yamamoto. Combined with Tina Wong’s ownership of the weekly digest, I’m excited for…
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February 21, 2023 in Uncategorized

Double down on the Defense Innovation Unit

Author’s Note: We’re starting to evolve this newsletter into a tool for companies, investors, and servicemembers to get actionable resources for contributing to defense innovation. In addition to our recommendations,…
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February 13, 2023 in Uncategorized

The innovation theater of the Marine Innovation Unit

Weekly Deep Dive In 2019, a call went out through the Marine Corps Reserves to find reservists with STEM degrees and put them on active duty orders. As a reservist…
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February 6, 2023 in Uncategorized

Float around and find out

Author’s Note: Chiral is gearing up to do individualized deep dives into startups in the defense ecosystem. Interested in being interviewed? Get in touch! Weekly Deep Dive I wanted very…
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January 30, 2023 in Uncategorized

Ask Sage, a DoD-tuned GPT-3 model, disappoints

Author’s Note: I’d excited to introduce Shiva Khanna Yamamoto, the latest team member to join Chiral! Shiva is an engineering physics student at Stanford. He’s spent most of his time…
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January 23, 2023 in Uncategorized

Vannevar vs BigBear vs Rebellion

Author’s Note: If you’ll be at the AFWERX Industry Days in San Antonio, TX, I hope to see you there! Shoot me a message via email or LinkedIn if you…
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January 17, 2023 in Uncategorized

Capella triples revenue, but is still weak; our analysis of balloons vs. satellites

Author’s Note: We’re officially just covering Five Eyes + Israel now. We’re making a trading away breadth for depth, and we’re hoping this is a better direction for our readers!…
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January 9, 2023 in Uncategorized

3 deals in tactical communications; drone management a trend for 2023

Author’s Note: Dealmaking is still slow in the New Year. We’re looking at paring back to just a US or Five-Eyes focused newsletter; Chinese fundraising is too opaque at the…
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January 2, 2023 in Uncategorized

Welcome to 2023 from Chiral

Author’s Note: Happy New Year! I’m soft-launching the free beta test for Dextral - please sign up on the site if you’re interested in helping us build our product! We’re…
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December 26, 2022 in Uncategorized

A very international-heavy Christmas issue

Author’s Note: Merry Christmas and happy holidays! This is a pretty quiet week for US companies but pretty lively for international companies. We’ll keep it straightforward and digest-like for this…
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December 19, 2022 in Uncategorized

Downrounds hit Shield AI and Snyk; Maxar acquired for $6.4B

Author’s Note: Starting this week, my startup will be recruiting folks for its beta test! I’ll release the URL next week in hopes everyone who is contracting with DoD will…
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December 12, 2022 in Uncategorized

Improbable out, SpaceX in; foreign companies expand autonomy gap

Author’s Note: Improbable, which developed synthetic environments and simulations for national security purposes, left the US defense space. In a statement from their current President & General Manager, the sudden…
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December 5, 2022 in Uncategorized

A skeptical take on the Office of Strategic Capital; Anduril gets $1.5B to compete with primes

Author’s Note: Chiral is going through some changes! We’re excited to welcome Tilak Bhatnagar to the team. Tilak is an active duty USAF 2dLt. He commissioned from Rutgers University with…
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November 28, 2022 in Uncategorized

Geospatial player raises Series B after first SBIR Ph 2 win

Author’s Note: Quiet week for US deals due to Thanksgiving. Hope everyone is gearing up for a good winter holiday coming up! Space  - Fraym, a platform for customers to…
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November 21, 2022 in Uncategorized

Three raises for SecDevOps; despite FTX, Ethereum player raises $200M Series C

Author’s Note: Writing to you all from the charming island of Tahiti, following some of the worst travel luck I’ve had in a while. Hope everyone is having a relaxing…
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November 14, 2022 in Uncategorized

Cybersecurity deals surge while space tech slows

Author’s Note: At the famous Touchy Feely retreat for Stanford GSB this past weekend, so we’re keeping this week light and digest-mode. In keeping with the theme from last week…
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November 7, 2022 in Uncategorized

Computer vision remains a military gap; smaller, more numerous deals in cyber

Author’s Note: We’ve gotten too wide; I'm not adding much value by covering many fields and industries. To keep things sustainable and develop a more pointed POV, Chiral is narrowing…
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October 31, 2022 in Uncategorized

DoD should procure farmtech; Web3 cyber tools grab investors’ attention

Author’s Note: What infrastructure is still missing in the defense venture landscape? In partnership with the Gordian Knot Center at Stanford, we’re going to find out. If you have research…
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October 24, 2022 in Uncategorized

Rise of generative AI disastrous for information and cyber warfare

Author’s Note: We’re now affiliated with Stanford University’s Gordian Knot Center for National Security Innovation!  Artificial intelligence 💡Generative AI can enhance existing information warfare capabilities. If you thought fake news…
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October 17, 2022 in Uncategorized

$7B in cyber acquisitions; Delta invests in Joby, a bright spot for passenger travel

Author’s Note: We have a new website! Check it out at You can also find our LInkedIn at this link. Cybersecurity 💡Big acquisitions have continued in the cybersecurity space…
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October 10, 2022 in Uncategorized

Space industry sees consolidation; debt financing on the rise

Author’s Note: We have a new website! Check it out at You can also find our LInkedIn at this link. Space 💡 We see a marked uptick in consolidation…
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October 3, 2022 in Uncategorized

ASVs are the drones of the sea; space deals bounce back

Author’s Note: We have a new website! Check it out at You can also find our LInkedIn at this link. Autonomy 💡Autonomous surface vehicles (ASVs) are the drones of…
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September 26, 2022 in Uncategorized

A new approach to rocket “launch”; growing food with satellites and robots

Author’s Note: Don't fret that the newsletter is longer this week! Coverage is better than ever because, in case you missed it last week, we've started working Grata into our…
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September 19, 2022 in Uncategorized

Cyber sees $10 billion in completed acquisitions; bringing Grata to Chiral

Author’s Note: I've always been concerned about the possibility of missing deals and raises due to methodological gaps in my research. I'm very open about how I conduct my research…
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September 12, 2022 in Uncategorized

Chinese space catching up to the US; DoD missing out on private authentication tech

Author’s Note: As yet another 9/11 passes by, I’m reminded of the importance that defense, security, and service play in our still imperfect union. Never forget. We’re now publishing the…
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September 6, 2022 in Uncategorized

Sustainability in space tech; defense-oriented drone makers pick up steam

Author’s Note: Happy Labor Day! Quiet week for the holiday. Two notes from me: 1) We’re publishing the newsletter on LinkedIn! Would love if you could follow our page and…
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August 29, 2022 in Uncategorized

AI comes to security; growth in firmware and distributed cybersecurity

Author’s Note: If you're part of a company that contracts with the military, I'm interested in interviewing you! Please grab some time on my Calendly. Artificial intelligence 💡Companies that employ…
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August 22, 2022 in Uncategorized

A glimpse of China’s defense tech market; massive $6.9 billion deal re-privatizes SailPoint

Author’s Note: If you're part of a company that contracts with the military, I'm interested in interviewing you! Please grab some time on my Calendly. 💡This week provided a glimpse…
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August 15, 2022 in Uncategorized

Is there a tech slowdown? Judging by the cybersecurity market, no.

Author’s Note: Why are we highlighting new industries? The reality is that the types of technology the DoD needs to adopt are resisting my efforts to box them into nice…
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June 27, 2022 in Uncategorized

Autonomy industry increases momentum; race to develop universal space software heats up

Author’s Note: The unsteady market, high inflation, and rising interest rates are putting pressure on investors and causing them to slow down the pace of their investments. This is the…
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June 20, 2022 in Uncategorized

Laser-based data transmission and miniature radar arrays get raises

Space 💡Research into space tech inevitably pushes the boundaries of science, including the promotion of optical laser links for transmitting data. - South Korea-based Contec raised a $47.23 million Series…
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June 13, 2022 in Uncategorized

Walmart full-steam ahead on Symbots; space stuck only relying on climate, defense

Author’s Note: Heads up that I'll be taking off for two weeks in July for my Marine reserves annual training. Expect some future radio silence (which I won't explain because…
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May 31, 2022 in Uncategorized

VMware sells for whopping $61 billion; asteroid mining to begin at end of decade

Author’s Note: Hope you had a restful and thoughtful Memorial Day. The holiday means a lot to anyone who has lost a veteran in their life, and we admire all…
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May 23, 2022 in Uncategorized

Chinese quantum and rocket launch providers are on the rise

Author’s Note: The recent market downturn is likely to significantly impact deep tech, hurting valuations (especially in space and quantum). The ensuing discipline may lead to greater interest in DoD…
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May 16, 2022 in Uncategorized

Cyber startups consolidate upon email; signs quantum payoff won’t come soon

Author’s Note: Do you know anyone who is a technical expert in text-based search? We’re looking for people with experience in keyword search or semantic search to be the technical…
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May 9, 2022 in Uncategorized

The VC that led a massive $250M Series A for a robotics company

Author’s Note: Pretty quiet week this week! Brainstorming anew the different directions I may take this newsletter as I inch my way to summer (and no classes). Have you ever…
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May 2, 2022 in Uncategorized

EO uses still stuck on defense, ESG; rocket propulsion goes hybrid

Author’s Note: Has anyone operated or heard of any syndicated venture capital models for defense investments? Please let me know! Have you ever been a part of defense contracting? If…
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April 25, 2022 in Uncategorized

How 3D printing is contributing to a circular space economy

Author’s Note: Have you ever been a part of defense contracting? Either from the private company side or the military side? I’d love to hear the good, the bad, and…
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April 18, 2022 in Uncategorized

Hypersonic space planes; foreign innovation in unmanned tech

Author’s Note: Have you ever been a part of defense contracting? If you’d like to share your frustrations with the DoD’s acquisition process and suggest solutions, I’d like to interview…
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April 11, 2022 in Uncategorized

Nearly $100M invested in autonomy; RaaS in construction tech

Author’s Note: I was in the field this past week with my Marine reserve unit, so this week will contain lighter commentary. I just gave a speech on the overmilitarization…
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April 4, 2022 in Uncategorized

How to get quantum talent? Acquire a smaller quantum company.

Author’s Note: Have you ever been a part of defense contracting? Either from the private company side or the military side? I’d love to hear the good, the bad, and…
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March 28, 2022 in Uncategorized

Firefly rumored up for SPAC; SandboxAQ debuts with 9-figure funds

Author’s Note: Have you ever been a part of defense contracting? Either from the private company side or the military side? I’d love to hear the good, the bad, and…
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March 21, 2022 in Uncategorized

Holy grail: Gates invests in always-on comms; Quadric makes an edge computing breakthrough

Author’s Note: Short list of updates this week, not much to draw conclusions about. Have you ever been a part of defense contracting? Either from the private company side or…
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March 14, 2022 in Uncategorized

Air Force investment gets funds to fuel Mach 5; highlights from Skyfi’s CEO

Author’s Note: In an exciting twist, I was elected a Co-President of the Venture Capital Club at Stanford GSB. I’d love to bring more deep tech investing to Stanford, so…
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March 7, 2022 in Uncategorized

Robotics-as-a-Service goes viral; China grows its quantum lead

Author’s Note: I hope everyone continues to stand with Ukraine. The below covers the past two weeks of updates. I’ve decided to keep coverage of cybersecurity, but I am actively…
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February 28, 2022 in Uncategorized

Support Ukraine

There's a time for speaking, and a time for listening. This is a time for the latter. To support the Ukraine effort, check out this site ( that a team…
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February 21, 2022 in Uncategorized

Strykers will soon beat drones with directed energy; why a fractured satellite EO market is good for DoD

Author’s Note: Happy Presidents’ Day! At the half-year mark for Chiral, I’m strongly considering some changes. First, I’m thinking of dropping coverage of cybersecurity. Of all the fields I cover,…
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February 14, 2022 in Uncategorized

Can satellites be designed to be collision-proof? Also, another quantum unicorn SPACs

Author’s Note: Happy Super Bowl Weekend! Perhaps that’s why it’s been a quiet week. In other news, this is issue #25 for Chiral. It’s hard to believe I’ve been doing this…
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February 7, 2022 in Uncategorized

Cybereason IPOs; “always-on” features are tailwinds for ICEYE, Sateliot

Author’s Note: Thanks to Context Ventures for hosting a great Milvet Startup Conference this past weekend! Got to meet some really cool founders and understand how different VCs are maneuvering…
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January 31, 2022 in Uncategorized

Five Chinese space startups raise $100M+; D-Orbit SPACs; robots begin reinventing warehouses

Author’s Note: Beginning to look for a summer internship - any PE/VC firms willing to take on a Stanford MBA/Harvard BA from the Marine Corps? Another reminder that I’ll be…
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January 24, 2022 in Uncategorized

Move over, SaaS; “as-a-Service” players emerge in space, robotics, and quantum

Author’s Note: I’ll be attending the upcoming Military Veteran Start Up Conference hosted by Context Ventures at the Marines' Memorial Club in San Francisco, CA on Feb 4th. Be sure…
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January 17, 2022 in Uncategorized

Cybersecurity tackles phishing; life sciences drive quantum use cases.

Author’s Note: A big week for acquisitions - there were 8 acquisitions and 1 merger, primarily by leveraged buyout (LBO). This may indicate a broader consolidation or opportunity across government-servicing…
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January 10, 2022 in Uncategorized

One software to rule them [robots] all; Leidos amplifies Hawkeye’s radio.

Author’s Note: 2022 is looking sleepy for Chiral still, but it’s a good adjusting period as I acclimate to a new courseload and begin a climate-focused space venture with a…
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January 3, 2022 in Uncategorized

Hydrogen air freight a big win for logistics, energy; Planet Labs’ share price stays in the mud.

Author’s Note: Happy New Year! Lots of new offerings up for consideration for Chiral, including job listings, beat-specific authors, and long-form publications meant to help startups obtain revenue from the…
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December 27, 2021 in Uncategorized

ZeroFox SPACs; GoSecure acquires Covail; Treeswift pioneers drone imagery of forests

Author’s Note: Happy holidays and, for those who celebrate it like me, belated Merry Christmas! Cybersecurity - ZeroFox is going public via SPAC, acquiring IDX in the process and combining…
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December 20, 2021 in Uncategorized

Counter-UAS squares up against drones; space and energy tech make for excellent bedfellows.

Author’s Note: We’re almost to the end of the year! Next week will probably be a thin week for updates given the holiday. Chiral is still sourcing from folks who…
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December 13, 2021 in Uncategorized

Japan’s iQPS and Finland’s ICEYE lead SAR push; unlocking the subterranean dimension of war.

Author’s Note: It’s challenging to draw meaningful themes and conclusions solely from a week’s worth of deals and fundraises at a time. I’ll be looking at building a report that…
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December 6, 2021 in Uncategorized

IBM, Honeywell accelerate the timeline for quantum; Spire completes acquisition of exactEarth.

Author’s Note: The breadth and pace of cybersecurity means that I’ll be further reducing scope of cybersecurity coverage. It will now include just B2B, US-based cybersecurity companies - these are…
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November 29, 2021 in Uncategorized

Japan, India, and EU space startups keep up with the US; Voyager makes its 6th acquisition.

Author’s Note: Happy beginning of the end of 2021! Chiral is still sourcing folks interested in contributing to this newsletter! What are you not getting from your typical defense publications…
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November 22, 2021 in Uncategorized

Investors bet big on lowering the cost of space launch and recovery.

Author’s Note: Happy Thanksgiving week! Grateful for your readership and also your willingness to share this newsletter with folks around you. Space 💡Commercial space is aiming at replacing the ultimate…
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November 15, 2021 in Uncategorized

Non-map uses for satellite data; 10 new US cybersecurity deals in 1 week.

Author’s Note: For cybersecurity, autonomy, and AI, I will be restricting coverage to solely US-based companies going forward. For space and quantum, I will still look internationally because these fields…
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November 8, 2021 in Uncategorized

Ocean sensors are essential for EABO; plus, powerful AI tools come to market.

Author’s Note: Thanks to those that attended my talk at the Association of Marine Corps Logisticians! Let me know at if you’d like a copy of my presentation. I’m…
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November 1, 2021 in Uncategorized

Is real-time space data coming? Also, see how AI and quantum improve military installation defenses.

Author’s Note: What deep dives would readers want to see? Let me know at Also, would people be interested if I did interviews? Stanford has brilliant professors, researchers, and…
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October 25, 2021 in Uncategorized

$100 million in cybersecurity fundraising within a single week.

Author’s Note: It’s a busy week up ahead as I record my presentation for the Association of Marine Corps Logisticians (AMCL) conference, where I am speaking alongside Commandant of the…
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October 18, 2021 in Uncategorized

The latest Series: 3 Cs, 3 Bs, and 3As – a big week for defense.

Author’s Note: If you want to help me cover more topics or news with Chiral, please reach out to me at! I'm looking to partner with up-and-coming defense thinkers and…
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October 11, 2021 in Uncategorized

Rigetti is public; Gretel,, Kuva, & Muon raise

Author’s Note: I will begin grouping articles and insights by theme rather than just commenting on individual articles about big investments, fundraises, or acquisitions in defense. This will better align…
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October 4, 2021 in Uncategorized

IonQ goes public; Anduril acquires Copious Imagery.

Author's Note: The project of cataloguing VCs and PE firms that are investing in defense is still forthcoming; I may decide to present the results at the Association of Marine…
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September 27, 2021 in Uncategorized

Xona, Aurora, Karman’s acquisition of Systima, and KWESST.

Author’s Note: This week’s issue includes the latest on space company funding (surprise, surprise) and hypersonic missile M&A activity. We may soon do an analysis on the major VCs or…
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September 20, 2021 in Uncategorized

Chiral News – Sep 20 Issue

Author’s Note: Short, sweet, and targeted: this is what I want Chiral to be. So from here on, Chiral will focus just on investments in defense technology startups. Not only…
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September 13, 2021 in Uncategorized

Chiral News – Sep 13 Issue

Author's Note: In this issue, we discuss new solicitations from the Defense Innovation Unit for nuclear propulsion in space, gaping data problems exposed by the Afghanistan withdrawal, Israeli innovations in…
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September 7, 2021 in Uncategorized

Chiral Defense – Week of Aug 30, 2021

Author’s Note: Hope everyone had a great Labor Day! This week is heavy in space topics, reflecting this year’s establishment of US and UK Space Forces and growth in private…
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August 30, 2021 in Uncategorized

Chiral Defense – Weekly News

(Quick note: I started this newsletter to highlight the most consequential developments in emerging defense technology and illuminate how private companies can tailor their product roadmaps for military end users.…
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