Last fall I visited ESTEC, ESA’s space research and technology center. In this first of three episodes, I talk with Maria Hernek, who heads the Flight Software Systems section. We talk about the challenges of space flight software, the development processes used by ESA and its vendors, as well as means of ensuring the required quality attributes. This episode can be seen as a continuation of the conversation with Andreas Wortmann in the OHB episode.
In this episode we get a peek into how OHB System AG in Bremen develops satellites — mostly based on the Galileo navigation satellites. We speak with Christian Pauly about systems engineering, with Mathias Tausche about manufacturing and integration, with Andreas Wortmann about the software on the satellites, and with Ingo Engeln about the company as a whole.
This is an episode on how satellites work with James Penson from Surrey Satellite Technology. Specifically we talk about satellite buses, the infrastructure part of the satellite on which the (typically scientific) payload is mounted. The conversation covers structure, thermal protection, energy supply, communication, guidance and attitude control as well as propulsion. This will be the last episode on space related topics for the time being :-)
This is the third and final episode covering the interviews I did when I was visiting NASA Ames. It consits of two interviews. The first one is about Ames’ involvement in the Ares/Orion projects which are part of the Constellation moon/mars exploration programme. I talk about this with Dr. George Sarver. The second part of the episode covers small satellites and why they are becoming more and more important (compared to traditional, larger satellites). In this part, my guest is Elwood Agasid.
This episode covers my visit at the European Space Agency’s (ESA) European Space Operations Centre (ESOC) in Darmstadt,Germany. After a short tour of the facilities with Andreas Schepers I had the chance to interview Uwe Feucht (Head of Flight Dynamics Division) on space flight dynamics and Paolo Ferri (Headof the Solar and Planetary Missions Division) on Mars Express, Venus Express and Rosetta.