Colorado company licenses MSU-developed tech

Contact: Jim Laird

STARKVILLE, Miss.--Innovative technology initially developed by researchers at Mississippi State's Geosystems Research Institute has moved off campus and into the marketplace thanks to a licensing agreement between a Colorado-based company and the university's Office of Technology Management.

"Working with business and industry to commercialize the university's intellectual property is a priority at Mississippi State," said OTM Director Kristin McCandless.

"Our work with CompassData is an example of the many successful partnerships our scientists, researchers and faculty have developed in the private sector," she said.

OTM is charged with efficiently capturing, protecting, and managing the commercialization of university-owned intellectual property.

In 2014, CompassData licensed the software tools from a university spin-off company, Spatial Information Systems, and rebranded them. The new CompassV&V products include CompassAA, for orthorectified image verification, and CompassTA, for QA/QC of elevation data. In December, USDA sources confirmed their certification of CompassTA software -- providing the opportunity for thousands of users to potentially access and utilize it for elevation accuracy verification of LiDAR point clouds, digital elevation models and other raster data sets, the company said.

For 20 years, CompassData has performed custom ground control points (GCP) collection for clients in the geospatial profession and archived those points in a database for commercial sale to other end users. The CompassV&V tools are used extensively with custom and archived GCP to verify the accuracy of geospatial imagery, surface and elevation models and many other spatial products, according to the company.

Used by numerous engineering firms and government agencies, CompassV&V tools are software tools used to verify and validate geospatial accuracy of aerial and satellite imagery data. Data verification performed with CompassAA and CompassTA is the best way to certify that the current existing data set is complete and accurate and meets project data requirements. Both tools establish automated work flows that ensure consistent quality control of geospatial products backed up by creation of standardized reports, the company noted.

"Since acquiring and rebranding the CompassV&V tools, we have made administrative upgrades to enhance the user experience," said Jeff Barker, a CompassData product manager.

"Additional improvements are in the works," he said.

CompassData is online at

Learn more about MSU's intellectual property and technology licensing initiatives at or contact McCandless at or 662-325-1939.

As the state's flagship research university, MSU is a recognized leader in a number of fields, and well known for productive partnerships, real-world impact, and offering undergraduate and graduate students unique research opportunities. In FY 2013, MSU's research and development expenditures totaled $206 million -- representing nearly half of all R&D by higher education in the state, according to National Science Foundation data.

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Wednesday, March 25, 2015 - 12:00 am