2nd Concurrent Engineering
for Space Applications
ESTEC, Noordwijk, The Netherlands
19 – 20 October 2006
CEW 2006 Program
Thursday 19 October 2006
Welcome address: M. Courtois (ESA-D/ESTEC)
09.10 Workshop Introduction: M. Bandecchi (ESA – NL)
Topic 1: Concurrent Design Centres
09.30 – 11.40
Chairman: Franco ONGARO (ESA – NL)
09.30 The Concurrent Engineering Center (CIC) at CNES
F. Gonzalez (CNES - F)
09.55 ASTRIUM’s Satellite Design Office Current State, Vision and Way
K. Yazdi (EADS Astrium - UK)
10.20 Victorian Space Science Education Centre: A Concurrent Design Facility
N. Mathers et al (VSSEC - Aus)
10.45 Coffee Break
11.00 Results of an international Survey of the Implementation of Concurrent
M. Schiffner (Univ. Munich - D)
11.15 Basic Concurrent Design Procedures for Satellite Systems preliminary
design and for Educational Purposes
P. Gaudenzi (Univ. Rome - I)
11.40 Keynote 1: Concurrent Innovation
M. Pallot (ESoCE-NET - F)
Topic 2: Application of CE in Space Systems Design
Chairman: Xavier ROSER (AAS)
12.05 Transition to Concurrent Engineering : Lessons Learned and Further Steps
X. Roser (AAS-F)
12.30 3 Dimensions of Change to Master Model-Based System Engineering
K Schoenherr (EADS Astrium - D)
12.55 Lunch Break
13.55 A new Concurrent design model for human factors in extreme
J. Jorgensen (SpaceArch - DK) [ABSENT]
14.10 SPADES – A new Integrated entry Systems Design Tool for the
Concurrent Engineering Toolbox
E. Allouis (SSC Surrey - GB)
14.35 IDEE, the Integrated Development Environment for TROPOMI
J. de Vries (Dutch Space - NL)
15.00 Evolution of Concurrent Engineering in Phases B/C/D
J. Miro (ESA - NL)
15.25 An Integrated Information Systems Approach to Spacecraft Engineering
B. Graziano (Univ. Cranfield - GB)
15.25 Coffee Break
16.05 Keynote 2: Towards collaborative systems empowering and motivating
people to work together
I. Laso (EC - B)
Topic 3: Towards Integration of distributed Centres
Chairman: Claude BRUNET (CSA)
16.30 More than videoconferencing: Trials of a new Sidebar Voice System for
P. De Florio (JPL - US)
16.55 Real Time Interaction between Concurrent Engineering Facilities &
further Technological Steps on Data Structuring
C.M. Paccagnini (AAS - I)
17.20 Architecture of a Grid-based Virtual Collaborative Facility for Space
S. Beco (Datamat - I)
17.45 ESA iCDF and Open Concurrent Design Server
M. Bandecchi et al (ESA - NL)
18.10 End Day 1
19.30 Workshop Dinner (ESTEC Restaurant)
Friday 20 October 2006
9.00 Keynote 3: Standards and their implementation for Methods and Tools in
Collaborative Systems Development and the Integration Processes
R. Smyth (Airbus - F)
Topic 4 : Performance and Standards
Chairman: Juan MIRO (ESA – NL)
09.25 Team members’ interaction in a Concurrent Engineering environment:
design process modelling through the dynamic systems theory
M. Lavagna (Univ. Milan - I)
09.50 Information Modelling - basics, life cycle approach and information
M. Valen Sendstad (DNV - N) [ABSENT]
10.15 Knowledge-based engineering for concurrent design applications
W. F. Lammen (NLR - NL)
10.40 Coffee Break
10.55 New Standards to archive PLM and 3D Data – The MIMER project
K. A. Bengtsson (EPM - N)
11.10 A Multi-Agent System for Distributed Concurrent Engineering
M. Vasile (U. Glasgow - GB)
Topic 5: Methods and Tools
Chairman: Ralf HARTMANN (ASTRIUM)
11.35 Integrated Design and Simulation for Millimeter-Wave Antenna Systems
T. Cwik (JPL - US)
12.00 Design tools integration for collaborative engineering at CNES
P. Bousquet (CNES - F)
12.25 TCDT, The Thermal Analysis & Design Tool to support Concurrent
M. Gorlani (BLUE Group - I)
12.50 Lunch Break
13.50 Keynote 4: A view on Concurrent Systems Engineering from an
E. Fricke (BMW - D)
14.15 TIW-O, Cost estimating space optical instruments
M. Tuti (ESA - NL)
14.40 ASTOS and its potential at the CDF
A. Wiegand (TTI - D)
15.05 Instrument Design Modelling in a Concurrent Engineering Approach
A. Mestreau-Garreau et al (ESA - NL)
15.30 A Generalized System Architecture Tool for Concurrent Design
M. Schiffner et al (Univ. Munich - D)
Workshop Summary Discussion
Chairman: Massimo BANDECCHI (ESA - NL)
Visit to CDF (Optional)
2nd Concurrent Engineering
for Space Applications
TOPIC 1: Concurrent Design Centres
The Concurrent Engineering Center (CIC) at CNES, F. Gonzalez
(CNES - F)
ASTRIUM’s Satellite Design Office Current State, Vision and Way forward, K. Yazdi
(EADS Astrium - UK)
Victorian Space Science Education Centre: A Concurrent Design Facility for Education, N. Mathers
Results of an international Survey of the Implementation of Concurrent Design Centers, M. Schiffner
(Univ. Munich - D)
Basic Concurrent Design Procedures for Satellite Systems preliminary design
T1.05 and for Educational Purposes, P. Gaudenzi
(Univ. Rome -I)
The Concurrent Engineering Center (CIC) at CNES
Gonzalez, F. ; Gillen, P.
Email : email@example.com
In 2004 CNES decided to create its own Concurrent Engineering Center called CIC (French acronym
for Centre d’Ingénierie Concourante). This was done within the frame of PASO (Plateau
d’Architecture des Systèmes Orbitaux) which is responsible of all phase 0 studies at CNES Toulouse.
In a first part, a brief description of the facility is given, showing the implementation of the meeting
room and the software architecture. Beyond the network of computers, multi-media devices and
software tools, emphasis is placed upon teamwork and the way in which System Engineering enables
managing complexity and change. In a second part, the emphasis will be given to CIC organisation and
methodology; the latter has a strong link with system engineering activity of PASO which developed
its own working process. For the build-up of system budgets and the exchange of parameters between
disciplines, we make good use of the IDM (« Integrated Design Model ») tool provided by the «
Concurrent Design Facility » of ESA and resulting from a close cooperation between both agencies.
Finally, the paper presents the experience gained during the early stages of the activity, and especially
the lessons learned from in-house studies performed on formation flying missions.
Astrium’s satellite design office current state, vision and way forward
Yazdi, K.; Knirsch, U.; Mussat, P.; Bast, D.; Paus, S.
Email : firstname.lastname@example.org
The Satellite Design Office is a concurrent engineering facility utilised by EADS Astrium at sites
distributed around Europe. It was first implemented in 1999 and operates today in Friedrichshafen,
Ottobrunn, Portsmouth, Stevenage, and Toulouse. SDO’s purpose is defined by two main objectives:
An improvement of the quality of design projects, from proposal preparation to satellite system design,
and a reduction in time and cost with simultaneous increase in result maturity. This shall be achieved
by increasing communication within a (distributed or local) project team by direct integration of the
disciplines into one process. Crucial is getting everyone, including the customer, assembled together in
the same (virtual) place. This yields a more efficient and clearer understanding of design drivers, which
also leads to a more accurate cost estimate. The overall concept creates a focused, and yet creative,
team environment that supports optimization of system-level design and decision-making.
This contribution deals with the current state of SDO, the strategy revisited recently by Astrium and its
vision targeted at in-house and in a European context. This is affecting both, SDO’s methodology of
the CE process and the package of tools utilised. Latter is subject of various improvement processes
concerning data repository, system/subsystem modelling, data exchange across disciplines and sites,
and instant 3D visualisation of spacecraft configurations.
The presentation will address the challenges of performing CE teamwork across tri-national borders
and means to improve it. We will furthermore give an overview of the discipline domain tools, which
specialists are encouraged to utilise, along with the SDO hard/software infrastructure, such as the
planned Integrated Design Model (IDM). This IDM is based on the framework provided by ESA’s
CDF and it is now under development at Astrium.
Victorian Space Science Education Centre:
A Concurrent Design Facility for Education
Mathers, N.M. ; Pakakis, M.K. ; Spencer, P.T.
Victorian Space Science Education Centre (VSSEC)
Email : email@example.com ,
firstname.lastname@example.org , email@example.com
The Victorian Space Science Centre (VSSEC) is a AU$6.4 million world class facility situated in Melbourne,
Australia. This facility was established to provide students and teachers access to state of the art equipment,
exciting and stimulating programs and continuous professional development. Scenario-based programs,
including a Mission to Mars and a Mission to the Space Station, are used to stimulate student’s enthusiasm for
maths, science and technology across a broad range of topics and demonstrate their relevance and applications.
In addition to the two scenario-based programs, VSSEC has established a range of programs that explore all
aspects of space science. These programs are supported by state of the art technology and curriculum design to
support both the student and the educator. This philosophy is demonstrated in the Massimo Room, a feature of
the centre which is based on the Concurrent Design Facility (CDF) at ESA and named in honour of the Head of
this facility, Massimo Bandecchi.
Applying information collected during a number of visits to ESA and the CDF, the VSSEC team in conjunction
with its university and industry partners, has developed a Mission Design program for year 7 and 8 students that
simulates the CDF and demonstrates the collaborative nature of mission design. Students will assume roles in the
various departments that determine the final mission such as science, engineering, payload integration,
manufacturing and testing, power and accounts/insurance with the aim of negotiating the optimum combination
of four payloads from the eight offered. The use of data for real payloads will also broaden the students
understanding of current and projected missions and the organizations that designed them.
The CDF philosophy and software that supports the student program has also been adapted for use by teachers to
support curriculum design, thus promoting excellence in education, science and technology. In the same way that
the CDF is used to streamline spacecraft design, it is proposed that this approach will reduce the time taken to
develop a unit of work to a single day. This approach is not limited to the development of science curriculum,
the use of the facility and an expert moderator can be applied to all areas of the curriculum.
VSSEC has established associations in both education and research with national and international organisations
such as ESA, NASA, CSIRO, the Bureau of Meteorology, Universities and industry. These associations allow
VSSEC to direct, focus and extend the breadth of the curricula and in so doing deliver a blended learning
environment giving support to the learner and the teacher. This is achieved by offering engagement and state of
the art science within an exciting frame work. The involvement of universities and industry also demonstrates
the relevance of space science beyond the classroom and potential career paths for students.
The centre forms a focus for space research through the strong associations with university researchers. This
information is then disseminated to students and teachers who benefit from the accessibility of space scientists
who are empowered to impart the passion they carry for their field as well as their technical expertise.
The ability to engage such a diverse range of people ensures VSSEC achieves its goal of demonstrating the
relevance and importance of space science and increases the level of science expertise in the community.
Results of an international Survey
of the Implementation of Concurrent Design Centers
Schiffner, M. ; Kuss, T.
Institute of Astronautics, Technische Universität München
Email : M.Schiffner@lrt.mw.tum.de
During the recent years a change and an increasing intensification of industrial constraints in almost every area
of industry occurred, particularly in the sector of Astronautics. Indeed the progress of technical development
mainly in the field of telecommunication- and information- technology enables today’s engineers to concept and
design exceedingly complex systems but it also challenges companies with accretive pressure in costs and time
of development while quality standards arise. With this background, in the mid 90s, the idea of “Integrated
Product Development” was formed. ESA has implemented this approach in the Concurrent Design Facility
(CDF) and is now spreading this approach into European Space companies.
The Institute of Astronautics involved by itself in the application of concurrent design centres in industry and
training of students in this research area did a survey about the practical implementation of this innovative
method of product development in commercial and educational sectors.
With the purpose to present an overview of the current situation in assignment and configuration of CDCs,
different operators were identified and contacted. Afterwards the different identified companies and Universities
were questioned about the fields design-team, processes, tools (hard- and software) and infrastructure based on
an online survey.
Additionally, the companies/Universities had the opportunity to provide information about their specific
experiences with the installation and operation of these Concurrent Engineering platforms. At the end of the
survey, the results were analyzed and evaluated.
The paper will present the analysis of the evaluated data from the provided companies and institutions as well of
the published data in literature.
Overall, representatives of all facilities evaluate the experienced results of the recent years as consistently
positive. Centres, which are mainly targeted at commercial issues, point out a drastic reduction in costs as well as
in the reduction of time of development and a better embedding and identification of their employees. Research
and educational facilities at Universities focus on familiarisation of the future engineers with new methods of
design, training them in teamwork capabilities and soft skills, as well as providing the students with specific
technical knowledge and the ability to use up to date software tools.
Basic concurrent design procedures
for satellite systems preliminary design and for educational purposes
Master in Satelliti e piattaforme orbitanti
Università di Roma La Sapienza
Via Eudossiana 18, 00184 Roma
Email : firstname.lastname@example.org
The advantages of developing concurrent engineering approaches for the design of space systems has been proven in
the recent years in several experiences developed in various centres, among which the European Space Agency (Esa).
Esa has developed in the years a concurrent design facility that was able to shorten and to improve the quality of
preliminary design for new space missions. The facilities, the software procedures and above all the mentality
developed among designers and specialists has made Esa a leading centres for concurrent engineering around the world.
The University of Rome La Sapienza has establishes a cooperation with Esa CDF with the main purpose of develop
among the post graduate student of the Master in Satelliti a system oriented mentality and a teamwork attitude while
training them in their specialisations.
In the present paper the results of this two years effort mostly developed by our students is presented and the main
characteristics of the basic procedures developed in our group will be illustrated.
The structure of the study
As well known the project of important and costly systems are managed by conceptually dividing the overall system in
several smaller subsystems, each of them designed in a separately way both for the topic that is dealt and from other
features, such as geographical distance between responsible or different companies managing the subsystems. All the
subsystems must of course follow a common design line to permit, after single implementations, to assemble al
components together in the final System. The design of one subsystem is strictly related with another, and often
relations involve more then two components at a time. In this context the use of concurrent techniques will allow the
study to be performed in a shorter time, with a better quality and a better evaluation of costs. At the University of Roma
La Sapienza we focused, in two different years, in two main missions: a TLC GEO satellite and a LEO EO sar satellite.
The study consisted in four phases:
1. the development of the design and sizing criteria for the preliminary design of subsystems and for the system;
2. the creation of a database (developed from data available freeware on internet)
3. the implementation of the sizing criteria and of the database in the workbook structure developed by Esa;
4. the test of the design procedures (implemented in a very simple network of hardware resources) for the preliminary
design of the above mentioned classes of satellites for two specific missions requirements.
In phase one an accurate definition of the variables describing the system itself and the various subsystem has been
defined in a teamwork effort between specialists. Then the flow of information concerning these variables has been
identified along with the sizing criteria. System budgets (mass, link, power) are used for the sizing of the overall
The study has been lead by logically dividing the final System (Satellite) in the minimum number of subsystems that it
could be usually thought to be made of: Mission Analysis (Mission), System Coordination (SC), Payload, Structure and
Configuration, Attitude and Control (AOCS), Power, Propulsion, Payload Data Handling and Transmission (PDHT),
Telecoms and Transmissions (TT&C) and Thermal, as better described in the figure below.
DS TX TM
DH RW ES
EPS BAT SAR
A t XPN
PCD DE RF
Solar U XPN
The system functional architecture.
The subsystems and their design are of course very different, for topics dealt, complexity and analytical approach,
however they were very tied both by the several information that they exchanged and by the punctuality of the results of
each subsystems that had to be furnished in input to another.
The above activity was implemented developing some software simulations programs using MS Excel as common data
exchange framework. The documentation of this phase can follow the common practises in use for software
documentation. Then for the formal description of the relations of the different parts of this system, UML diagrams,
such as Class Diagrams to describe the general structure of the subsystem and Activity Diagrams or Collaboration
diagrams to document the details of the implemented tools, were used.
Topic: implementation of simple sizing criteria and creation of a database for the satellite bus in the frame of a
concurrent engineering environment as developed by Esa.
Presentation preference: oral presentation with viewgraphs
<<interface>> <<interface>> <<interface>> <<interface>>
DH_Thermal DH_System 1 DH_Power DH_Structure
+Power Loss Nominal +Mass +Power Required
+Power Loss Eclipse +Mass Margin +Number of supply lines
+Power Loss Safe +Power +Total Power consumption
+Total power On Consumption
+Total Power DH Consumption
1..* 1..* 1..*
1 1 <<interface>>
<<interface>> DH Component
DH Component Thermal Aspects DH Component Structural Aspects
+Mass 1 1
+Unit Name +Length
+Power Loss +Width
+Minimum Operating Temperature +Height
+Maximum Operating Temperature +Position Suggested
+Minimum Non Operating Temperature +Position Forbidden
+Maximum Non Operating Temperature +Mass
+Length +Mass Margin
An example of the documentation concerning the flux of information involving the data handling subsystem.
The worksheet for the mass budget evaluation in the case study of an EO satellite.
2nd Concurrent Engineering
for Space Applications
TOPIC 2: Application of CE
Transition to Concurrent Engineering : Lessons Learned and Further Steps, X. Roser
3 Dimensions of Change to Master Model-Based System Engineering, K Schoenherr
(EADS Astrium - D)
A new Concurrent design model for human factors in extreme environments, J. Jorgensen
(SpaceArch - DK)
SPADES – A new Integrated entry Systems Design Tool for the Concurrent Engineering Toolbox, E. Allouis
(SSC Surrey - GB)
IDEE, the Integrated Development Environment for TROPOMI development, C. M. Plevier
(Dutch Space - NL)
Evolution of Concurrent Engineering in Phases B/C/D, J. Miro
(ESA - NL)
An Integrated Information Systems Approach to Spacecraft Engineering, B. Graziano
(Univ. Cranfield - GB)
Transition to Concurrent Engineering : Lessons Learned and Further Steps
Roser, X.1; Feresin, F.1; Paccagnini, C.2; Zoppo, G.2
Alcatel Alenia Space, FRANCE; 2Alcatel Alenia Space, ITALY
Email : email@example.com
Alcatel Alenia Space, moving from the previous experience on the application of the concurrent
engineering approach has decided early 2005 to strengthen its efforts in this field by implementing a
concurrent design facility to support its advanced projects activities. The effort, required also from the
need of closer interaction between the different company sites, resulted in the implementation of a full
scale, CDF-like, concurrent design facility in Cannes. The Cannes facility, where first experiments run
on proposals and phase 0 studies, proved to be complementary to the one installed in Turin, initially
intended to the development and integration of multidisciplinary analysis tools and currently in the
process of being extended to support a new distributed approach in connection with the Cannes site.
In line with this wide vision, AAS has been working in implementing the capability to perform
concurrent engineering with team spread on the 3 sites of the science and observation business unit
The present paper will first present the previous study management approach and the followed process
and its motivation to perform the transition, then draw some first lessons learned:
- Concurrent engineering implementation process
- Required Engineering tools adaptation
- The engineers adaptation to the processes
- Multi-site Concurrent Engineering experience and technical solutions
- Phase 0 and A management using concurrent engineering process. The evolution to concurrent
engineering has been performed in a step by step approach, taking into account the need of convincing
the study managers and experts. First a multi-media meeting room with individual PC's, engineering
tools and data-basis has been implemented end 2005, an phase 0/A engineering process with sessions
objectives has been drafted and use on few studies. This first step proved the efficiency of this
teamwork in rapid trade-off assessment and preliminary sizing. This approach was challenging (team
management, budgets, minutes) for the system engineers but proved highly motivating for the experts.
This first step used centralised budgets excel tools and experts computation tools; it lead the participant
to feel the need for an effective data-exchange tools but also adequate technical data-basis.
In a second step, the ESA IDM (data-exchange tool) was consequently integrated within the tools and
processes and experimented in pilot projects. This step combined in the frame of the DON QUIJOTE
study, the operation of the team in multi-sites (Torino and Cannes) using the internal network to share
data and performed distributed concurrent sessions.
The Concurrent Design Implementation activities also proved a strong convergence and integration
motor between former Alenia (Torino) and Alcatel Space teams (Cannes), making necessary to
exchange on tools but also to build up a common engineering process and tool. This was supported by
an effective workshare between process implementation and experiment and interfaces development
with engineering tools.
Finally, the papers will give the current road-map for evolution of the concurrent engineering process,
tools and also its implementation in other domain of the business units.
3 Dimensions of Change to Master Model-Based System Engineering
Email : firstname.lastname@example.org
European space agencies and industry have established successful ways of jointly developing space
systems in the past. These practises are currently changing in three dimensions :
• Concurrent Engineering
• Collaborative Engineering And Data Exchange
• Virtual Product Development
and it would appear they will need to change much more.
1st Dimension - Concurrent Engineering: Today’s products – both for space and non-space -
increasingly integrate mechanical, electronic and software components – on any level. The integration
within this triangle is not well-supported by the classical engineering domain “silo” approach featuring
domain-specific education, language, certified processes and heritage. It may be overcome if we jointly
break the - historical - process, language and data flow barriers between the electrical, mechanical and
software engineering domains. How can we truly integrate our processes, learn and apply a common
language for consequent concurrent engineering?
2nd Dimension - Collaboration And Data Exchange: The only way to benefit from today’s lean
project organisations and multi-nationally integrated company organisations is to enable engineering
domains & disciplines to work in a collaborative mode in all phases of the project lifecycle – and with
a maximum of technical data & model continuity along the product lifecycle and full data
synchronicity at any point in time. Advanced collaboration facilities like the ESA Concurrent Design
Facility (CDF) are key building blocks in this process. How can we enable such collaboration and data
exchange by a joint effort between agencies, industry and standardisation bodies (e.g. ECSS)?
3rd Dimension - Virtual Product Development: The choice and power of virtual product
development tools is ever increasing, typically driven by non-space industries like automotive, aircraft,
shipbuilding, logistics services etc. Simultaneously tool vendors compete by stretching the boundaries
of their monolithic offerings (CAD, PLM/VPM, ERP), adding bits of CAE here and there - rather than
offering flexible modules that support interoperability. Exciting new tool features often compromise
company processes and enforce change – not necessarily for the better. How can the European space
industry reverse the drive and ensure maximum process benefit from a highly innovative and powerful
The integrated vision of model-based system engineering drives the change in all three dimensions.
Earliest possible integrated functional system validation and verification in a virtual product
development is an important means to understand the interactions between domains and deal with
The system model and system data base can only act as the working basis for collaborative teams, if
configuration control is applied throughout. There are still hopes for clean system level solutions, but
they are more likely going to be aggregations of sub-models and data repositories on component- or
Future system engineering will apply mechanical, electrical and software/control models based on
performance and behavioural requirements. The objective is to validate and verify a virtual
representation of the evolving system against both. Today, ways of using models in the three classical
engineering domains (software/control, electrical, mechanical) are still inconsistent, models are rarely
applied in a proactive fashion, i.e. component models are prepared after the design, not before. All
domains will ultimately benefit from embracing the philosophy of models, introducing behavioural
models as a core element of equipment specifications and consistently applying them throughout the
A systematic – maybe even “big bang” style - deployment of model-based SE is desirable to some, but
it is an unlikely scenario in the light of the necessary process re-engineering steps in all levels of
industry and the unpredictable dynamics on the tools market. Space agencies and industry will have to
establish a philosophy of manageable, converging steps and learning curves, supported by R&D and
pilot projects. This community will have to establish at least a few common strategy pillars – e.g. how
to approach and involve the tools industry - to control its destiny. Would we consider temporarily
teaming up with powerful non-space industries to enforce open data structures and tool interoperability
via standardised, non-proprietary data exchange technologies – far beyond STEP?
This paper tries to analyse the current industrial environment w.r.t. model-based system engineering
and anticipate trends. It names the practises related to concurrent engineering and product life cycle
management which the European space industry will need to change. There are challenges to
overcome, but there are ways to achieve. Numerous agencies, standardisation bodies, councils (e.g.
Incose), academia and industry actively deal with the issues. The ESA-CDF incl. the related ECSS
working group and R&D projects like ESA’s “Virtual Spacecraft Design (VSD)” project are the
strategic spearheads. The paper summarises the challenges and success factors with a focus on the
triangle of space agencies, prime industry and suppliers.
A new Concurrent design model for human factors in extreme environments
Email : email@example.com
The engineering and management benefits of the use of Concurrent Design Facilities for development
of new manned and unmanned space missions is well documented. The model for concurrent design
have been successful in design for earthbound facilities as ex. Childcare institutions, by an integrated
cross-disciplinary integration of architecture and design knowledge with child development science.
This to consider the needs of the population (children & staff) with the architecture. This paper will
discuss and suggest a possible extension of the CDF to be used in development of the design of
manned space habitats or habitats in analogue environments with a focus on the interaction between
human factors and technology. The suggested reconfiguration will use the main concept in the CDF
facility, but change the single positions and tasks in the CDF configuration to cover key factors in
designing for a human habitat. The model works on a large integration of space architecture, space
psychology and space engineering in an equilibrium between the disciplines. The suggested
reconfiguring will mirror the components of the triangle of extreme environment design: man –
technology – environment, covering the various aspects the design process in circumstances where the
human factor and the interface between human and technology is important. Space engineering, which
in the current CDF normally has a dominant role, will in this configuration be more coordinate. The
paper will therefore extend the use of CDF to non-engineering dimensions of space architecture, which
do have an important role in coming long-term interplanetary manned missions. Conditions which, in
the light of the extreme demands for coming expeditions, will have a large impact on the planned
technology and engineering.
SPADES – A new integrated entry systems design tool for the concurrent
Allouis, E; Ellery, A
Surrey Space Centre
Email : firstname.lastname@example.org
As planetary missions are being developed at increasing pace with stringent cost boundaries, this paper
deals with one aspect in particular: the entry, descent and landing (EDL) phase. EDL systems design is
a highly specialised and diverse engineering problem including aerodynamics, thermodynamics and
mechanics to name just a few. Assessment of these technologies requires a number of specialists,
which makes systems validation difficult.
We are currently developing SPADE, a software tool that can evaluate potential EDL systems designs
quickly and efficiently by non-specialist systems engineers. SPADE encapsulates the expert knowledge
required to develop all EDL sub-systems from heatshield design, to parachutes, as well as providing the
unique capability of evaluating landing hazards such as the probability of landing on a rock or the
depth of impact for penetrator missions. Built to be easily accessible to systems engineers, it interfaces
with a number of binary and XML databases ranging from topography, atmospheric properties, and
past planetary missions to provide a direct feedback on the feasibility of the mission.
This computational framework can be used as a stand-alone environment, but can also interface with
mission spreadsheets. While other powerful EDL software tools are available, they provide capabilities
and complexity that are usually more suited for later stages in the mission design. Here, the user can
either setup a scenario graphically, or by means of script and spreadsheets. Built-in trade-off and
Monte-Carlo tools are available to verify design spaces boundaries as well a number of post-processing
tools that provide a quick assessment and visualisation of simulated data as well as the landing site
properties, rockiness and slope.
By empowering systems engineer with these new capabilities, the mission design team will be able to
deliver quickly new preliminary probe designs and performances that will facilitate early decision
making of future planetary programs.
IDEE, the Integrated Development Environment for TROPOMI development
Plevier, C.M.; de Vries, J.
Dutch Space BV
Email : C.Plevier@DutchSpace.nl
Cooperating science and industrial partners within the Netherlands are planning to set-up the Integrated
instrument Development EnvironmEnt (IDEE), providing an innovative tool for reducing risk and cost
for instrument developments and using this to the benefit of the TROPOMI development.TROPOMI is
a UV-SWIR atmospheric remote sensing instrument on board of TRAQ satellite as proposed for ESA.s
Earth Explorer Core Missions.
The IDEE is a concurrent engineering facility focussed on instrument / mission performance aspects
and combines models representing the specific knowledge areas from the partners. For the science
partners these are scene definitions, radiative transfer models and level 1-2 algorithms and for the
industry partners these are instrument models and level 0-1b algorithms.
The facility is similar to ESA's The Voice in the sense that it is accessable for the partners via a web-
interface and that it uses the GridAssist application to execute the models on a computing GRID. With
an instrument model reflecting a given design, the partners can individually study the impact of design
changes and perform error budget analyzes concerning the complete system. This has the
programmatic advantage of reducing meetings and actions as well as throughput time in general and
the technological advantage that criticalities in the design are identified early in the programme and a
tighter margin philosophy can be applied.
The presentation will explain the system as applied for the TROPOMI development but also make clear
that it forms a general tool applicable to other projects, up to the scale of European space programmes.
Evolution of Concurrent Engineering in Phases B/C/D
European Space Agenc (ESA/ESTEC)
Email : email@example.com
The benefits of Concurrent Engineering applied to early project phases, typically 0/A, have been
largely demonstrated in the 90’s (e.g. NASA/JPL Project Design Centre, ESA Concurrent Design
Facility, and other industrial initiatives). A process, methodology and a set of tools have been
developed to support this paradigm. As a result, feasibility studies can be executed in a systematic, cost
The application of CE to later project phases, typically B/C/D has been an intention for some time, but
the high level of complexity of the system design and verification process during those phases, the
large degree of distribution of the industrial partners, and the explosion of data constitute a major
Despite of the existence of Integrated Project Teams, where subcontractors are collocated with the
prime contractor during a certain phase of the project, it is unthinkable that all relevant actors share the
same room and go through a design iteration concurrently at any one time during phase B/C.
The application of the CE principle is however possible during these phases, its implementation shall
however be very different to the one we are used to see in the frame of the PDC or CDF. Taking the
CDF as an example, the paper will analyse the main elements on which the CE paradigm is based upon
and how these elements can be taken into later project phases:
Multidisciplinary team: a typical size of the CDF study team is 20 people, all working in ESA
that can meet in the CDF @ESTEC with a link to ESOC. During phases B/C/D the size of the
team is typically 1 order of magnitude larger. The physical proximity during joint sessions is
replaced by distributed collaborative engineering techniques, like communication via project
web portals, live chat and videoconferencing.
Integrated Design Model: A relatively limited set of parameters defines the design at the level
of phase 0/A. The amount of engineering data increases significantly in later project phases.
Techniques for the representation of the system design in those phases need to be applied.
The current view and utilisation of the Engineering Database needs to evolve. System
modelling & simulation (both functional and physical) needs to be adapted to the purposes of
The Process: the use of CE techniques requires an evolution and adaptation of the spacecraft
system development process. Only then a significant increase in the cost-efficiency for space
projects can be achieved.
The paper will discuss the vision and future challenges in the application of CE to phases B/C/D of a
space project. The ongoing activities in support of this vision will be addressed.
An Integrated Information Systems Approach to Spacecraft Engineering
Email : firstname.lastname@example.org
Within the spacecraft design and development lifecycle data continuity between systems engineering tools, configuration
management systems, and project management systems is essential both within and across project phases. This horizontal
and vertical transfer and connection of data is most commonly a chaotic mix of system interfaces, manual data updates,
emails, and ad-hoc reports. Systems engineering analyses performed using computer tools such as spreadsheets, simulation
programs, and CAD models contribute large amounts of data to this mix. With each new mission, the number of tools
increases; in part because the independent development of tools across phases and projects is essential in order to properly
verify increasingly sophisticated designs.
In the business environment, enterprise applications have evolved to address the problem of data continuity and the
increasing number of business information systems. They provide an integrated system to manage processes across all
aspects of business, from Manufacturing to Finance. At the core of business enterprise applications sit Relational Database
Management Systems (RDBMSs), which may contain tens of thousands of tables. Around the RDBMS are built modular,
flexible, and configurable business processing and presentation layers; bespoke tools connected to a common data source
with a common interface.
Within the Space Research Centre at Cranfield University an attempt has been made to apply the business enterprise
application model to the spacecraft design and development lifecycle. The resulting system has been named SEDAT
(Spacecraft Engineering Design and Analysis Tool). At the core of SEDAT is a RDBMS that provides a platform for
integrating different tools and systems into a common interface. In order to assess the effectiveness of this approach, a hi-
fidelity Free-Molecular Flow Ray-Tracing (FMFRT) module has been developed and integrated into SEDAT for use in
Phase A, B, or C simulations of spacecraft in low Earth orbit.
The paper that will be presented will outline the dual challenges of managing data continuity across a project along with
the growing number and complexity of systems engineering tools. It will describe SEDAT and the FMFRT module and
conclude with an appraisal of the success of the adopted approach.
• Problem Definition
o Data continuity
Discuss with reference to Astrium
Poor communication infrastructure across large projects
o Increasing number of tools
Pressure to meet review deadlines – Project managers’ priorities
Duplication of work effort
o Per-Phase solutions: E.g. CE at ESTEC & Virtual S/C & Astrium / Alenia collocation of models etc
o Cross phase data continuity solutions: Mostly document / drawing focussed
o Could borrow from Aircraft Industry / Automotive Industry / Business
• Solution Description
• Solution Testing
o Describe FMFRT: Geneses, applications, architecture, & how it has been integrated into SEDAT
o Assessment of success of approach
o Lessons learnt
o Recommendations for further work
2nd Concurrent Engineering
for Space Applications
TOPIC 3: Towards Integration of Distributed Centres
More than videoconferencing: Trials of a new Sidebar Voice System for Distributed Studies, P. De Florio
(JPL - US)
Real Time Interaction between Concurrent Engineering Facilities
T3.02 & further Technological Steps on Data Structuring, C.M. Paccagnini
(AAS - I)
Architecture of a Grid-based Virtual Collaborative Facility for Space Projects, S. Beco
(Datamat - I)
ESA iCDF and Open Concurrent Design Server, M. Bandecchi et al
(ESA - NL)
More than videoconferencing: Trials of a new Sidebar Voice System
for Distributed Studies
DeFlorio, P.1; Abrams, S.2
Jet Propulsion Laboratory; 2University California, Irvine
Email : email@example.com
Distributed teams face a variety of challenges in accomplishing their collective work. Since 2002, JPL's Team X has
extended it's collocated model of concurrent engineering to a distributed model. Two features of this model - one
organizational and one technological - mitigate against some of the challenges of distributed team work.
First, the distributed team is a partially-distributed "team of teams" structure, rather than a fully-distributed team
(with individuals at each site) or a partially-collocated team (with a primarily-collocated team at one site and remote
individuals at other sites). We describe the deployment of a peer-to-peer Sidebar Voice System and present a social
network analysis of SVS sidebar communications among a partially-distributed team in four distributed design
sessions in 2004, showing an increase in communication between individuals at different sites to a degree similar to
that found in collocated interaction. This analysis also identifies different patterns of SVS use, reflecting its
flexibility in supporting sidebar conversations among team members in a variety of ways.
Early observations of a partially-distributed team following the Team X process model identified two levels of
communicative interaction within and between sites. On one level, the team shared a site-to-site video
teleconferencing (VTC) bridge that provided the primary means of articulation and coordination among team leads
at each site. Actions included organizing the design work into a malleable agenda, identifying tasks to be
accomplished, negotiation of conflicts, and communicating major decision points affecting much of the team, as
well as periodic status reports of the distributed team's progress.
The bulk of the design work itself, however, occurred at a different level, among multiple sub-team groups in
"sidebar" conversations. In sidebars, individual team members could share prior knowledge and experiences, discuss
innovations, identify risks and contingent uncertainties, and reflect on the consequences of design decisions made.
Difficulties in conducting telephone-based sidebar conversations among team members at different sites in 2002 led
to the development and subsequent deployment, in 2004, of a Sidebar Voice System (SVS). The SVS was a
combination of a telephony server with a web-based graphical user interface (GUI) which reduced the time to
establish a telephone connection to a remote team member from approximately 2 minutes to less than 1 second.
In contrast to the site-to-site nature of the VTC, the SVS enabled person-to-person and group audio sidebar
discussions. Beyond this audio connectivity, the GUI afforded an overview of sidebar activity, in real-time, similar
to the awareness afforded by instant messaging clients of the availability of friends and colleagues to chat. The SVS
did not stand alone in supporting distributed team work, but it did fill a crucial gap in the existing infrastructure
between the "common ground" of design parameter-sharing systems (PSSs) and the site-to-site coordination via the
VTC. The use of the SVS was almost always triggered by some noticed change in shared parameter values (after an
update cycle) or by some discussion via the VTC.
Concurrent engineering/design processes are intended to provoke the identification of issues and problems in real-
time and the benefit of the SVS afforded was the rapid resolution of many of these problems by small subsets of the
team, rather than escalating them to the attention of the entire team or dismissing them without collective
Real time interaction between concurrent engineering facilities
and further technological steps on data structuring
Paccagnini, C.M.1; Zoppo, G.P.2; Maggiore, P.3; Amerio, A.3
Alcatel Alenia Space ; 2Sofiter ; 3Politecnico di Torino
Email : firstname.lastname@example.org
In the current European Space Industrial domain, even within leading edge industries, the engineering teams suffer
• Inability to maximize benefits from use of available IT.
• Lack of unified views and data representation of adopted engineering life cycle support tools.
• Need to involve too many highly specialized skills to build-up project specific distributed environments.
• Difficulties in sharing knowledge and expertise.
• Long loops for technical decision making in complex project organizations.
The use of Collaborative Engineering Sessions has the potential of increasing productivity and efficiency by
reducing unproductive travel time, preventing meeting delays, creating shorter and more structured meetings, and
allowing for more effective participation and greater teamwork. This paper will describe the results obtained by the
Real time Interaction between Concurrent Engineering Facilities (RTI) study performed under the ESA Integrated
Triangle Initiative (ITI) and starting form the RTI lessons learnt, a possible CDF-Data Exchange structuring (XML
based) is discussed.
The ITI-RTI activity was seen as a precursor in helping to highlight the technical difficulties and requirements
emerging when concurrent distributed engineering between facilities all across Europe is to be established. The
goals of the ITI-RTI study could be summarize as following:
• To achieve a real-time interaction between Concurrent Engineering facilities for collaborative engineering
sessions to support the space project review process
• To find new solutions involving data sharing and CAD integration, exploring new technologies such as
XML and web services
• To provide a new standard methodology that could be used during a CDF session
After evaluating the information sharing techniques and the geographical scenarios to be evaluated, the RTI project
highlighted major issues, way forwards, solutions and drawbacks in order to clarify what can be done, how and at
With these solutions, the project started in designing and developing the communication layer software to allow
performing distributed tests:
• Allowing data sharing with the proper formalization /standardization
• Allowing Application sharing / IT resources sharing
• Allowing Application interaction
The proposed architecture, deployed over Wide Area Network, allowed all actors (ESA-ESTEC, AAS-I, POLITO)
to have full control of data and tools ownership and was fully compliant with the Firewall/Proxies security policies
of all involved sites..RTI architecture will be operating for all 2006: within this period of time the accessibility of
servers by ESA and AAS and potential new users is offered.
RTI lessons learnt
RTI experiment was instrumental in highlighting some of the major issues related to the distributed interaction
between different geographically distributed companies, namely:
• Deal with Company security policies
• Deploy a common approach to heterogeneous environments (from hardware, software and working
methodology points of view) but above all:
• Identifying a common language to reach the basic mutual understanding required for performing
RTI made leverage on the ESA-CDF data exchange format as a common reference for system definition and data
sharing. This experience highlighted the need of a greater level of data generalization and formalization in order to
reach a neutral, structured data repository capable to enhance information identification, retrieval and flow between
different facilities and their analysis tools.
Starting from RTI and following the need of improving internal collaboration between the different sites of the
company, AAS-I started a research activity to identify the basic elements of a possible common language to support
inter-sites, cross companies collaborative engineering and applicable also to later phases of the space project life
cycle, thus still being compatible with the CDF data exchange.
A new data formalization based on XML has been developed based on the above requirements, along with the
necessary instrument required to interact with it.
CDF Data Exchange structuring & XML
The proposed approach is based on the data separation in different structures following their engineering semantic
1. a “product tree” structure, containing all information about elements and units composing the whole system
(including all attributes and operating status).
2. an “operating modes” structure, containing information relative to the different disciplines operating modes
3. a “mission data” structure, containing information about the different mission phases and relatives properties
Because of the data intrinsic hierarchical structure and the need of flexibility, these characteristics can be well
supported by XML, a language born specially for maintain data and allow to easily access it.
This paper will also describe a possible XML implementation of the above structures, describing how to store and
access Excel based Data Exchange into/from the XML data structures.
Architecture of a Grid-based Virtual Collaborative Facility for Space Projects
Beco, S.1; Parrini, A.1; Paccagnini, C.2
DATAMAT S.p.A ; 2Alcatel Alenia Space
Email : email@example.com
Nowadays space activities are characterised by increased constraints in terms of cost and schedule combined often
with a higher and higher technical and programmatic complexity.
To answer this challenge, Space Agencies and main industrial Space Integrators have deployed Concurrent
Engineering Facilities at their premises to make available environments where tools from various disciplines can be
exploited enabling concurrent analysis, providing quick results, increasing data sharing and coherence among
engineering options. Thanks to the automated information exchange and the use of interconnected tools, the change
from a sequential vision to a concurrent one for space project design allows tackling and solving problems, enabling
a quick exploration of several solutions not only faster but also deeper, leading often to the possibility of taking real-
The European Space Agency (ESA), at its ESTEC premises, has set up the Concurrent Design Facility (CDF)
starting in 1998. This has widely demonstrated the advantages of applying the Concurrent Engineering approach to
the assessment and conceptual design of future space missions and has raised an enormous interest among the
European partners (academia, scientific communities, industry, other agencies) in the space sector.
At the same time, starting from mid 90’s, a remarkable increase in computing power has been achieved by designing
and prototyping technologies, most notably the Grid, to support distributing tasks and data on distributed computing
centres linked with high-speed networks. With such potentials the capability to organize virtual collaboration and
online interaction will become more and more concrete; data and tasks will be shared across geographically wide
areas, and whole teams will interact with one another on a regular basis.
Grid technology can therefore provide the means for secure connectivity of design environments as well as integrate
multiple heterogeneous systems into a powerful virtual “single” system.
Within this framework, the European Space Agency, at beginning of 2006, awarded a project called Grid-based
Distributed Concurrent Design (GDCD) to study how to allow geographically distributed facilities to interact each
other in real-time over wide area networks adopting the Grid technology for the purpose of space projects, to make
the structure deployment reliable, cheap and compatible with Concurrent Facilities. One of the purposes of this
project is in fact to deploy a prototype to interconnect the above mentioned CDF to other sites run by ESA or by
industrial partners using a Grid based architecture.
The idea in collaborative working is not only to facilitate team integration of geographically dispersed people but
industrial integration of complicated products. This enhanced industrial integration will in turn generate new
business models. The case of aeronautics (especially the recent A380) has pointed out that working in a
collaborative fashion results in the sharing of the R&D costs between the prime contractors and its numerous
subcontractors, especially SME’s.
A Grid-based infrastructure is an appropriate architecture to support distributed engineering. A Grid could be seen as
an organised network of computers which add up their own computing or storage capabilities to achieve a common
goal. A node of the Grid may be given the possibility to split its own computational load and to distribute it to new
computers which opens up the possibility of computation trees with undefined depth thus matching very complex
products. This model is relevant in engineering as far as the work can be clearly split into independent tasks forming
The model retained for this study is that of a computational Grid with one level depth i.e. a star. Let’s assume that
ESA has contracted a space project to a consortium. ESA holds a reference database and it disseminates it to the
members of the consortium. ESA is at the centre and the members of consortium are linked to it but not linked with
each other. Processing is distributed among all the players: some computational tasks are specific to the centre, some
are specific to the remote sites. These tasks are independent in the sense explained above. The output of
computational tasks goes to the centre where it is consolidated (common format, consistency, no redundancy) and
where the reference database is updated; it is then disseminated to all the players.
This is what we will call a “Grid-based Virtual Collaborative Facility”. Where different steps of a space project
can be hosted and where data needed to and produced by them will always be “in the loop” for all phases and
possibly for future projects.
The paper will present the architecture of such distributed and shared facility, identifying possible infrastructures,
tools, procedures and actors. Such architecture should in principle be able to use any platform and provide at least
the means to:
- Dynamically define the architecture itself according to project requirements and lifetime and the access to the
environment regardless of the platform used (in few words, openness in terms of standards and SOA-based in terms
of offered services);
- Include a set of tools to enable the performance of distributed concurrent design projects;
- Interface with common tools used in spacecraft design centres and organisations for spacecraft design along the
different design phases.
Such architecture, suitably tailored, will be then the basis for the above mentioned prototype which will prove the
architecture being suitable, although it will be implemented using as much as possible off-the-shelf solutions both
from a technological and application points of view.
Bandecchi, M. ; Gunner, J.
Concurrent Engineering section, ESA/ESTEC
TEC-SYE, P.O. Box 299, 2200 AG Noordwijk
Tel. +31(0)71.565.3701, Fax. +31(0)71.565.6024
ESA – OPS/I
ESA’s Concurrent Design Facility (CDF) has substantially reduced the preparation time for pre Phase A studies, not
only significantly reducing costs, but also improving data quality and analysis available to industry. This success in-
part, is due to the IT infrastructure and the Server-Based Computing (SBC) model deployed to support all the CDF
design reviews and studies.
The core of the CDF’s computing environment is based on Microsoft Server 2003 Enterprise Edition and Citrix
MetaFrame XP. This provides a secure development environment for the CDF Model, easy access to CDF tools
across all ESA sites along with centralised administration and control. The SBC model, where applications are
deployed, managed, supported and executed from central server farm(s), allows projects and development to be
conducted without the difficulties a distributed and uncontrolled design environment can present.
With the increased awareness of Concurrent Engineering and the additional involvement from National Agencies,
Industry and Academia during CDF design sessions, the concept of an Internet CDF (iCDF) was born.
By encouraging industry to adopt the CDF developed approach to Concurrent Engineering (CE) for space projects it
is hoped that a more effective approach to later project phases will allow significant cost savings.
The objective of iCDF is to actively extend the application of the CDF, with the real-time involvement of National
Agencies, Industry and Academia in joint design studies and reviews.
2 Functions of the system
The primary function of iCDF is to provide remote access connectivity by third-parties to the ESA Concurrent
Design Facility via secure communication mechanisms over the Internet, using dual-factor strong authentication
mechanisms based on digital certificates and passwords.
The iCDF administrator(s) will be able to directly control and distribute third-party access in a flexible and timely
fashion according to the specific profile of the users and/or study schedule.
When connected to iCDF any CDF external partner will be able to remotely and actively participate (as if they were
present in the CDF) during design sessions using the CDF integrated design model (IDM), view and edit documents
as well as see real-time Data Exchange in the CDF IDM. External partners will be able to access any public domain
information relevant to the study using the Citrix application publishing technology.
A segmented network inside the ESTEC firewall but independent from the ESA Intranet has been created as a
“trusted” demilitarized zone. From an end-user perspective, this “trusted” demilitarized zone (DMZ) can be seen as
an external “replica” of the current CDF facility for limited access by third-parties (e.g. National Agencies, Industry,
Figure 1 –Architecture (not presented)
To connect to this “trusted” DMZ, external partners will need to connect to a Citrix Access Gateway (CAG). This
universal Secure Socket Layer (SSL) virtual private network (VPN) appliance provides a secure, always-on, single
point-of-access to all available Citrix published applications available for study sessions. The CAG, deployed within
ESA’s external DMZ will secure all traffic with the user through a SSL certificated tunnel. Integrated end-point
scanning including virus software, firewalls and spyware checks ensures that the users’ device remains safe for the
connection to the ESA corporate network. These checks will be scheduled to run on a regular basis for the duration
of the connection and they will enforce a change in the functionality offered to the user should the result of one or
more of these tests change.
The CAG will have two IP Addresses (dual home system) registered within the DMZ – one to provide connectivity
to the client-device, the other being the route towards the “trusted” DMZ. This is to ensure that any traffic entering
the public DMZ and communicating with the CAG will not be able to directly route towards the “trusted” DMZ
without first being authenticated by CAG / External Domain Controller (see figure 1).
Advanced Access Control (see figure 1) enables the iCDF administrator(s) to establish a fine degree of control over
applications and files to be accessed. The Advanced Access Control option manages both what can be accessed and
what actions are permitted based, for instance, on external users Study role, location, type of device, configuration
of device etc. In particular, the following two types of controls are applicable:
• Policy-based access control—Enforces policies based on the results of the endpoint analysis to control what
resources users can access and what they can do once they are granted access (e.g., download, copy, or
• Action rights control—Enables administrators to set policies to allow or deny viewing, editing and saving
documents depending on the user's identity, device, location and connection.
Authentication will be performed using dual-factor strong authentication mechanisms based on digital-certificates
and passwords. A User will be able to access the CAG from any location, as long as they are able to install the
Windows version of Citrix client software, the client-certificate and have an internet connection. The client
certificate will be provided by an external Public Key Infrastructure (VeriSign), fully-managed by the supplier but
still allowing a high degree of customer control. No client will be able to connect the CAG without a certificate
which they cannot retrieve without explicit authorisation from the CDF.
Figure 2– Client Certificate Enrolment process(not presented)
The major Milestones of the project are:
Detailed Design Review 4 Aug 06
HW Delivered (Payment Milestone) 16 Aug 06
Implementation Completed 30 Sept 06
Testing of documented disaster recovery procedures,
Pilot completed and Acceptance (Payment Milestone) 6 Oct 06
Given the overall size of the work involved, it is proposed to carry out the project with the following stages (Project
set-up, Engineering and Implementation phases).
ESA Open Concurrent Design Server
Bandecchi, M. ; Matthyssen, A.
Concurrent Engineering section, ESA/ESTEC
TEC-SYE, P.O. Box 299, 2200 AG Noordwijk
Tel. +31(0)71.565.3701, Fax. +31(0)71.565.6024
The Concurrent Design Facility (CDF, www.esa.int/CDF) is a state of the art facility created at the European Space
Research & Technology Centre (ESTEC) in Noordwijk (NL) with the main purpose of assessing and designing
future space missions using modern concurrent engineering technologies and methodologies.
Since 1998 over 40 potential future missions, mostly scientific, but also related to Earth Observation and Human
Spaceflight, have been assessed at pre-Phase A level using the facility. In addition, the CDF infrastructure has been
used to perform industrial work reviews, prepare specifications, and coordinate international project work.
The CDF infrastructure is based on the Integrated Design Model (IDM), an in-house developed tool, which allows
integration of all the subsystem discipline tools and parameters in a consistent and effective design environment.
The model has also represented the means to capture the technical knowledge and to document the “engineering
views” that are required to run the design processes. The techniques and tools developed are now well tuned and
established for the application to the preliminary phases of the space project life cycle.
2 DISTRIBUTION OF METHODOLOGIES AND TOOLS
The IDM is highly requested by several ESA Institutional Partners and the nucleus of the IDM has already been
delivered to CNES (French Space Agency), ASI (Italian Space Agency) and CSA (Canadian Space Agency) at their
request. It has been/is being used by these organizations as a nucleus for the creation of their own design facilities.
The idea is to develop these centres starting with a common and agreed data representation in order to facilitate
future interoperability and interchange, joint project work, link of these facilities for real-time cooperative (i.e.
A wider distribution of this nucleus and the generalised and standardised use of a common data
model/representation could highly contribute to the creation of a global E-collaborative environment for the design
and development of space missions. Academia would also benefit of the usage of this tool and related methodology
and, eventually, contribute to its improvement.
It is ESA’s intention to coordinate and integrate these efforts in Concurrent, Collaborative and Distributed
Engineering actually on-going in the European space sector, sharing the experience of CDF with industry and other
agencies. In order to achieve this goal, distribution of the ESA CDF Concurrent Design tools and methodology is
required. ESA CDF has selected an Open Concurrent Design Server as the most appropriate way for this distribution
and the integration of the user society feedback
3 OPEN CONCURRENT DESIGN SERVER
The OCDS activity involves the implementation of the transformation of the CDF Concurrent Design model and
methodology into a Open Concurrent Design Server which bridges the current CDF IDM implementation towards
standard Information models and Reference Data Libraries (RDL).
A thorough review of the Concurrent Design Facility (CDF) Integrated Design Model (IDM), taking into account
the Space Industry’s feedback and comments on the CDF IDM nucleus, will lead to the preparation and
demonstration of a data model according to open data exchange standards describing the parameters and their
function in the design model resulting in a preliminary Open Concurrent Design Server (OCDS). The first OCDS
version will cover Phase 0 and Phase A design phases. Further design phases in the life cycle will be reviewed and
proposals made for the evolution and continuity of the data model where appropriate.
The OCDS project has 2 main goals:
1) The creation of an Open Concurrent Design Server (OCDS) and to make it available to industry in the form of
This OCDS shall serve 3 purposes:
a) replace the current Excel based Data Exchange in the CDF IDM.
b) serve as the start building block for ESA’s industrial partners to implement their own concurrent
c) enable collaborative, concurrent and distributed engineering of space systems between different
organizations, using standard object definitions;
2) The enhancement and consolidation of the overall CDF IDM for internal use to:
a) comply with the results of the OCDS development;
b) enhance the software approach used in the CDF IDM Intermediate Layer.
The OCDS activity includes the definition, organisation and implementation of the infrastructure to support the
delivery, maintenance and redistribution of the OCDS in the form of Community Software (i.e. “Open Source”
restricted to the institutional partners of the Agency).
Other industries have achieved major quality and productivity improvements through the use of object model
technology based on open standards for interoperability. These methods and technology are now available to the
Space industry in the form of interoperable space information modelling objects using ISO 10303 and ISO 15926.
Interoperable object model technology also allows automated standards checking and cost estimating to better
control project scope, schedule and cost.
This solution helps the European Space community to:
• Increase Data Management Capabilities, including Life Cycle Data Management
• Support the information longevity objective
• Achieve a hardware and software independent solution
• Optimise the design process
• Consolidate Design Models in a repository based on open standards
• Improve communication to contractors and partners, using Open and publicly available standards (e.g. ISO,
• Streamline the communications to other ESA corporate applications using model based integration
• Connect data to product assurance (PA/QA) activities.
Standards envisaged to be used in OCDS activity are ECSS-E10 Part 1.1 B and Part 2-3 (Space engineering, System
engineering), ECSS-E-40A (Space Engineering Software ) and ISO 10303 (STEP) which includes support for XML
(Part 28) and an interface with UML (Part 25) and ISO 15926 define a complete information architecture that
enables the interoperability of software applications (engineering disciplines) for the entire product life cycle.
5 CONCLUSION AND FUTURE WORK
The OCDS activity initiates a long-term relation between the Space Agencies, Industries and Academia by
establishing a Centre of Excellence for Concurrent, Collaborative and Distributed Engineering for the Space
Industry, using Open Standards and common information models.
This will create a) an Open Source Design Server which enables collaborative, concurrent and distributed
engineering of space systems between different organizations, using standard object definitions; b) OCDS (or an
instantiation/copy of it) serving as the start building block for ESA’s industrial partners to implement their own
concurrent design infrastructure. The OCDS will be a one-stop application for downloading of a proven Concurrent
Design tool incl. methodology; as well as a platform for cooperation and the submission of ‘all’ project data, as an
interoperability gateway for engineering data, insuring better quality and validation of information.
An interesting test case of the OCDS is the consolidation of the existing ESA CDF IDM so that it complies with the
OCDS. The OCDS incorporate the CDF Concurrent Design methodology and all functionalities currently provided
by the CDF IDM, but it will use significantly different technologies.
In parallel to this activity ESA CDF is working on subjects related to the use of GRID for Concurrent Engineering.
At regular intervals both projects will exchange information in order to enable limited overlap and perfect alignment
of used methodologies and technologies.
An “Open Source” like support infrastructure will be set-up to support the OCDS User Community with helpdesk,
bug reporting and solving, new OCDS versions, new/updated information models and Reference Data Libraries.
The OCDS activity is about to start and will be finished in 12 months time. By ECEC2006 the first status reports
and results will be available to be presented.
2nd Concurrent Engineering
for Space Applications
TOPIC 4: Performance and Standards
Team members’ interaction in a Concurrent Engineering environment : design process modelling through
T4.01 the dynamic systems theory, M. Lavagna
(Poli. Milan - I)
Information Modelling - basics, life cycle approach and information sharing, M. Valen Sendstad
(DNV - N)
Knowledge-based engineering for concurrent design applications, W. F. Lammen
(NLR - NL)
New Standards to archive PLM and 3D Data – The MIMER project, K. A. Bengsston
(EPM - N)
A Multi-Agent System for Distributed Concurrent Engineering, M. Vasile
(Univ. Glasgow - GB)
Team members’ interaction in a Concurrent Engineering environment: design process
modeling through the dynamic systems theory
Lavagna, M.R.; Sangiovanni, G.; Ercoli Finzi, A.
Politecnico di Milano,
Email : firstname.lastname@example.org
This paper proposes a method to support decisions to be taken during the space system preliminary design process in
a Concurrent Engineering (CE) framework, based on the dynamic system theory. That approach provides the team
of engineers a tool to analyze and select the behavior each designer should maintain to let the design process
converge to a stable equilibrium. The equilibria of the design process dynamics are looked for and their stability
features are investigated according to significant parameters strictly related to the decision making process each
designer in the team goes through. Each subsystem design accomplished by each expert is constrained by a set of
sizing relationships while the free sizing variables choice follows a dynamic dictated by the designer him/herself,
depending on a collaborative/competitive behavior he/she assumes depending on the design process circumstances.
Therefore each sizing variable is here expressed by an ordinary differential equation representative of the engineer
behavior along time: each ODE is built according to a overall system mass and power contention. More specifically
each ODE is made up of three terms: the first is representative of the internal variable itself with a “contention”
strategy to simulate the designer consciousness in limiting his/her subsystem mass increasing; the second terms is in
charge of representing the coupling among internal variables in the same subsystem; the third terms connects the
sizing variable dynamics of a subsystem to the dynamics of a variable input from a different and strictly related
subsystem to the current one. Each of the former terms are weighted to simulate the different relevance the designer
decides to give to each component: the same model can represent both collaborative and competitive scenarios
among designers of different subsystems in the same design process. The search of the equilibrium and the
bifurcation analysis allows identify the domain those weight should belong to not to be trapped into unstable zones
representative of unsuccessful design processes. Simulations have been done on three interdependent subsystems:
the propulsion, the power generation and a payload subsystem. The equilibrium and bifurcation analysis showed the
benefits of that approach in suggesting each designer the behavior to maintain according to each of the three
aforementioned terms to let the whole process converge. Quite interesting analysis appeared by applying either a
collaborative or a competitive behavior. The last one highlighted a larger bifurcation zones within the stability maps
and once more confirmed the benefit of such an approach in creating a tool to simulate the design process dynamics
to avoid bottlenecks. The work on going is focused on two goals: the enlargement of the modeled subsystems to
increase the ODE system complexity and better represent the real design interconnection environment; the dynamics
switch, depending on the dynamics itself between a competitive and a collaborative behavior within the same ODE
according to the model of behaving of the human designer along the process.
Adaptive Resonant Theory and Bayesian Nets to mine design processes histories to support
first guess identification in complex space system studies
Lavagna, M.R.; Sangiovanni, G.; Ercoli Finzi, A.
Politecnico di Milano,
Email : email@example.com
The paper presents a possible approach to support the preliminary space system design process in the very early
phases taking advantage of previous study processes successfully accomplished. The proposed method generates the
inputs for the so-called pre-phase A feasibility study, the team of engineers works on, to define a preliminary space
system solution by extracting knowledge and expertise hidden behind the previous studies solutions, obtained by a
specific chain of step-by-step choices. The users are in charge of selecting the size and the content of te mission
database to be mined. Space missions, particularly focusing on interplanetary exploration, are fast growing in
complexity: several modules can be involved within the same mission such as multiple orbiters, entry modules,
landers/rovers, ascending vehicles, and, eventually, human transportation units; missions can be split into more
different phases, according to particular operative modes of each module; mission objectives and requirements can
be definitely ambitious and demanding. Such a various scenario defines the hyperspace in which the starting high
level mission configuration ( system and trajectory) for the quantitative space system design must be identified,
having as inputs the qualitative mission objectives and related possible requirements only. The definition of the
configuration to start with, together with the system solution for each identified mission phase, is a very demanding
task, to be accomplished by the engineers and based on their expertise: a wrong high level starting configuration
could lead to an unsolvable bottleneck, loosing time and effort and making the process definitely inefficient. As in
each dynamic process, , in fact, the initial condition is determinant for the reachable final state that, in such a case, is
the preliminary mission study involving both the trajectory and the system configuration definition. Although the set
of possible starting conditions to answer the objective and requirements can, sometimes be identified, the rank of the
whole set of alternatives needs an automatic support. Moreover, such a rank should be accomplished according to
different and numerous clashing aspects, often qualitative at all. The proposed tool, starting from some generic and
qualitative mission objectives, such as the planet to be visited and the number of possible on-board instruments, not
only generates all possible high level architectures, but, thanks to a co-evolutive multi-objective optimization
algorithm, sorts those belonging to the final Pareto hyper-surface, according to a predefined metric. The control
variable domains are both discrete and continuous: technological classes according to each on-board subsystem have
discrete domains such as chemical versus electrical versus nuclear propulsion, photovoltaic versus thermal power
sources, spinning versus three-axis, single axis stabilization, launcher alternatives, number of units to be design for
each considered mission phase, strategy to face particular phases (aerocapture versus aerobraking versus propelled
maneuver); dynamic-related quantities to manage the trajectory selection are differently, defined on a continuous
domain. Being in the very preliminary phase, no system sizing is accomplished, task of the following pre-phase A;
hence quantities coming from the actual subsystem definition in terms of device selection such as the system wet
mass, the power demand, the cost and the reliability cannot be quantified according to the classical models; hence,
they cannot be included in the cost function vector considered for the multiobjective process. That is why the criteria
vector is, here, represented by a set of indexes specifically and robustly modelled to quantify the qualitative
judgment given on each possible high level configuration solution and facing the unavoidable uncertainty in the very
first design phase . Such models have to work on qualitative and linguistic inputs, to simulate uncertain causal
dependencies, and output a quantitative index. To this end, a data mining technique is applied to take advantage
from a predefined preliminary studies database: more specifically the Adaptive Resonant Theory is applied to make
the system learning dependencies among the mission objective domain and the technical solution space, taking into
account unavoidable correlations among the variables. While the ART technique allows highlighting logical
connections between mission objectives and subsystem configuration choices, the quantification of those identified
relationships is still to be detected. A Bayesian Net approach is applied to attach each dependency arc a weight,
representative of the strength of such a connection among the missions given in the database. The configuration
alternatives and mission objectives dependence modelling is then applied to run a global optimizer which offers, as
output a set of feasible first guess configurations for the analyzed missions. Simulation results are offered to show
the tool sensitivity to the mission database features (dimension,inserted missions type, etc), and to highlight the
benefits a previous mission studies database mining offers to the quality level of the first guess set.
Information Modelling - basics, life cycle approach and information sharing
Valen-Sendstad, M. ; Myrvang, P. ; Mjøs, N.
Det Norske Veritas
Email : firstname.lastname@example.org
ESA has been successful with their internal operation of a Concurrent Design Facility (CDF). The CDF is today not
an industrial product that effectively can be distributed to and used by new user organisations. Based on requests
from various national space agencies, the space industry and academia, ESA will appreciate to share their CDF
experiences, technologies and tools, in a wider context, with the European space industry.
ESA is taking a responsibility, establishing a concurrent, collaborative and distributed engineering product for the
space industry. This will increase project quality and effectiveness through electronic modelling and analysis of
spacecrafts and effective sharing of life cycle information between various stakeholders in European space industry.
The paper will present experiences, current work and plans from the oil and gas industry that can contribute to the
success of the CDF in ESA, and is related to the topics:
-Basics of information modelling (information modelling in a “nutshell”)
-Application of Concurrent Engineering (CE) in space systems’ life cycle
-Towards integration of distributed centres
First, the paper explains general terms and principles in information modelling. Thereafter it is presenting a specific
project with the objective to develop neutral product models to support data exchange and integration using
“Intelligent Data Sheets” and to use these to support new collaborative distributed work processes within and
between organizations. To ensure high information quality a test facility to manage reference data and validate data
exchange and prototype software interfaces will be established.
The work is based on international and national open standards. This project intends to :
•Develop a methodology for exchanging data across applications and across data sheet formats
•Based on this methodology, develop product models as a basis for data integration and exchange for specific data
sheets using an ISO standard (ISO 15926).
•Establish a test facility where reference data can be managed, data exchange templates can be validated against the
requirements of the product model, and interfaces between different applications can be tested
•Define a methodology for seamless work process-to-work process communication for migrating from current
conventional work processes (“as-is”) to future highly collaborative work processes (“to-be”). This will include
developing templates for work process-to-work process (W2W) interface design within and between organizations.
This project aims to improve the time, cost and errors in business processes as effective exchange based on
standardised product models offers value to participants by facilitating the migration to more efficient collaborative
work processes with a high level of data integrity.
Knowledge-based engineering for concurrent design applications
Lammen, W.F.; Baalbergen, E.H.; Houten, M.H. van
National Aerospace Laboratory NLR
Email : email@example.com
Aerospace design is based on long-term research investments within an internationally collaborating community.
Design studies are usually performed in multi-disciplinary teams. Large teams of engineers are involved using
several different simulation tools, varying from in-house developed codes to Commercial-Off-The-Shelf tools. At
the same time the design teams are challenged more and more to work together in a concurrent way. At this stage
concepts such as knowledge-based engineering and product life-cycle management become useful. Design tools and
innovative methods to effectively utilise these tools in a collaborative working environment are essential. The full
paper will describe examples of methods to efficiently apply multiple design tools in a concurrent engineering
environment. Methods for control and structures engineering in combination with tool chaining and secure remote
data sharing are treated.
In the context of knowledge-based engineering, aerospace projects often use mathematical and technical computing
software like MATLAB/Simulink as their design environment for simulation models and control algorithms, e.g. for
spacecraft design. At the same time those algorithms must be tested against a complete spacecraft configuration.
These tests usually involve many simulation models that originate from different modeling environments. It is
widely acknowledged that automatic model transfer is essential in this field. The automatic model transfer tool
MOSAIC has already been applied successfully in the European space industry to reduce time and costs (e.g. ATV,
Herschel-Planck, VSRF). Recently, NLR has developed a new version of MOSAIC, which connects
MATLAB/Simulink to the concurrent engineering environment SimVis of ESA’s Concurrent Design Facility
(CDF). It is now possible to automatically transfer complex (sub-)system models (e.g. a sensor model) from
MATLAB/Simulink to SimVis and to integrate these models into the existing spacecraft architecture. The models
are updated easily by repeating the same transfer process. At the same time one can automatically transfer the
MATLAB/Simulink system model to a hardware test environment for a dedicated (hard) real-time sub-system
simulation. This takes the knowledge-based and concurrent engineering approach to the next stages: testing and
operation. The model transfer process is further facilitated by integrating engineering tools for design, test and
model transfer into an automated tool chain.
Since aerospace design is a multi-disciplinary process, not all design aspects can be treated by a complete system
simulation at once. Specific parts of the design require specific methods of analysis, e.g. structure analysis using
Finite Element Methods. This type of analysis usually takes a long calculation time and significant computational
effort. It is therefore difficult to integrate it into a complete system simulation directly. At this point methods of
numerical model approximation and data fitting are useful in combination with a well-designed computer
experiments. In the past years, NLR has built up specific knowledge about sophisticated ways of data fitting and
design-of-experiment in the context of multi-disciplinary design. The knowledge development is supported by a
specific tool for approximation of models with multi-dimensional input and output. The tool facilitates the multi-
objective optimisation approach in aerospace design. Furthermore the resulting approximation models are easily
integrated into an efficient simulation of a complete system, since they require little computational effort. Following
this manner detailed analysis models can be applied in a concurrent way.
Both examples described above involve well-organised processes which may be automated and easily repeated,
possibly with different input. This reduces time/cost and avoids errors in the engineering process. Furthermore, test
and analysis results can be reproduced at much later stages which fits in with the long-term product life cycles in
aerospace. In case the members of the design team or their tools are distributed over multiple sites, sophisticated
methods to co-operate are necessary, besides video-conferencing facilities. At NLR, virtual working environments
for collaborative engineering are developed and applied. Besides providing easy access to the actual models and
simulation software, the environment also facilitates documentation and tools for management and education.
Development processes are structured into tool chains, which define series or even graphs of tools, input parameters,
and the data exchanged among the tools, hence enabling preservation and easy re-use of knowledge. The
construction of the collaborative engineering environment is based on NLR middleware. Through its application of
state-of-the-art web technologies, it facilitates concurrent and remote access to applications over a network,
interactively as well as in embedded mode. Interactive access is provided through a graphical user interface, which
may vary from a generic interface for tool and tool chain execution to a specialised, user-tailored user interface.
Embedded access enables other applications, such as an engineer’s own desk-top applications, to apply tools and
tool chains available from the collaborative engineering environment, without explicit intervention from the user.
The full paper will include an example of how a tool chain for collaborative engineering can be operated through a
engineer-oriented user interface. Another aspect of the collaborative engineering environment is the exchange of
design and test data, documentation, and other related information. Aerospace projects often require exchange of
information between multiple organisations. At the same time the security aspects of the information sharing are
crucial. NLR develops and applies specific methods for secure remote sharing of information over the web. In this
way easy and controlled sharing is enabled of any kind of information among a possibly geographically dispersed
design team. In addition, long term preservation of the information is ensured.
The National Aerospace Laboratory NLR has a long tradition in the field of concurrent engineering in aerospace
design. Current activities are covered by means of a dedicated department: the Aerospace Vehicles Collaborative
Engineering Systems department. Tools have been developed and applied for concurrent engineering activities at
NLR and abroad. This will be further illustrated in the full paper.
New Standards to archive PLM and 3D Data – The MIMER project
Bengtsson, K.A.1; Wirtz, J.2; Haenisch, J.1; Rincon Turpin, N.1
Jotne EPM Technology, NORWAY; 2EADS Military Air Systems/Eurofighter, GERMANY
Email : firstname.lastname@example.org
Most aerospace (and space) companies are using PLM and 3D systems since a number of years. However, how do
they archive this data? Today companies have big problem to store and exchange PLM and 3D data and more
importantly no solution for long-term data retention. The Jotne EPM Technology and EADS Military Air Systems
project MIMER is the first one to deploy ISO 10303 (STEP), ISO 14721.4 (OAIS) and AECMA EN 9300 (LOTAR).
The purpose of the project is to deploy the next generation of long-term archiving tools and to roll out an end-user
application for Digital Archives.
Companies within the aerospace industry are legally obligated to keep all aircraft-related data such as technical
specifications and two dimensional drawings. As a result, this data usually goes through an archival process.
Information is retrieved and reproduced in the event of an air accident, for example, to help evaluate possible causes,
determine responsibility or shed light on a possible construction error. Today, given the extensive use of computers
in aircraft design and construction, the archiving process has become a real challenge. Three-dimensional models are
on-screen mathematical representations that cannot be archived by printing them out and filming them as is
currently done with 2D drawings. Furthermore, these models are created by specific software applications in specific
formats that may not remain interpretable over multiple generations. Clearly, systems, formats and software
applications are changing, evolving or disappearing at ever-increasing rates.
The aim of MIMER is to develop a solution for keeping industrial data over a long period of time (at least 50 years)
that is independent of platforms, system environments and file formats. International standards will play a key role
as the guarantor for longevity in the final result. The MIMER extensions to the existing capabilities of the
EXPRESS Data Manager™ will result in EDMvisibility™. This product will include the usual EDM database server
functionality and EXPRESS data verification capabilities in addition to several new modules :
• A program library to support the verification and possible healing of boundary representation geometry and
topology as required by prEN9300-110.
• A STEP geometry browser so that errors in product shape can be visualized and analyzed on the screen. In
addition, EPMT will develop an archival-specific management application to keep track of the archived
information. EADS Military Air Systems has decided to use the following standards for archiving their
construction data :
o ISO 10303-514 for product
o ISO 10303-214 for product-data management data. ISO 10303 is the basis for STEP and PLCS,
o prEN9300-110 for long-term archiving and retrieval of explicit geometry (originally developed by
AECMA and the LOTAR project.
o ISO 14721:2003 for specifying a reference model for an open archival information system
The purpose of the standard is to establish a system for archiving information, both digitalized and physical, with an
organizational scheme composed of people who accept the responsibility to preserve information and make it
available to a designated community. To fulfil legal and certification requirements the stored form of the data shall
be an accurate representation of the source data. In other words: the quality of the archived data shall be as good as
possible to enable a true reconstruction whenever necessary, possibly far in the future. All of the standards,
especially prEN9300-110, include data quality requirements. MIMER will deliver the software that verifies data
against these requirements before archiving. The contract between Jotne EPM Technoloy and EADS is part of an
industrial participation agreement (IPA) between the Norwegian Ministry of Defense, the Norwegian Ministry of
Trade and Industry, several Norwegian companies, and the Eurofighter consortium.
A Multi-Agent System for Distributed Concurrent Engineering
Vasile, M. ; Radice, G.
University of Glasgow
Email : email@example.com
Concurrent Engineering is a business strategy which replaces the traditional product development process with one
in which tasks are done in parallel and there is an early consideration for every aspect of a product's development
process. This strategy focuses on the optimization and distribution of resources in the design and development
process to ensure effectiveness and efficiency. In today's business world, corporations must be able to react to the
changing market needs rapidly, effectively and responsively. They must be able to reduce their time-to-market and
adapt to the changing environments. Decisions must be made quickly and they must be done right the first time.
Corporations can no longer waste time repeating tasks, thereby prolonging the time it takes to bring new products to
market. Therefore, concurrent engineering has emerged as way of bringing rapid solutions to the product design and
development process. In Concurrent Engineering, collaboration is essential for individuals, groups, departments and
separate organizations within a firm, a company or an agency.
In recent times Concurrent Engineering (CE) has been demonstrated to be an effective approach both to the
preliminary design of new space missions and to the assessment of pre-existing ones. Two key points in CE are the
coordination of several disciplines and the concurrent management of different sources of information. The former
requires all disciplines to work in parallel exchanging data in a consistent way. Since according to the CE paradigm
the design process cannot be sequential, i.e. no one of the subsystem can complete its design without some relevant
information form all the other subsystems, coordination is a critical issue. Moreover each specialist typically works
with their own set of tools, following their own methodologies. In addition information about past missions and
state-of-the-art technology need to be retrieved both at the beginning and throughout the design process. Therefore
the generation of data of different natures and the demand for fast information retrieval generate the need for data
and information management. In particular non-homogenous data must be converted into homogenous data in order
to facilitate their exchange. Finally, incomplete or erroneous information should be completed or corrected.
In this paper a multi-agent system for distributed concurrent engineering is proposed. The overall architecture of the
system is based on a number of software agents associated to a number of typical activities running during a
concurrent design session.
The design process is modelled through a set of agent behaviours and agent interactions. In the literature the process
is modelled either through a hierarchical structure with a project leader or through a peer-to-peer[2,3] structure.
The former model is more traditional and is ideal when a single entity can specify clear requirements for all the
elements composing the product. On a distributed network made of several groups belonging to different entities a
peer-to-peer model is more realistic. The proposed system is intended to be applicable to both cases. Moreover it is
conceived to be used on several machines connected either through a LAN, the internet or any other network
connection that allow each of machine to communicate with the others. The main idea is to have a virtual CE
working environment in which all the disciplines are involved and can share information, though neither computers
nor people are necessarily physically in the same place. The system is composed of four classes of agents:
computing agents, information retrieval agents, data management agents, and process management agents.
These agents are dedicated to specific computational tasks. When inquired for some values, either from the user or
from the other agents in the system, computing agents run existing software tools on the available machines,
mimicking the behaviour of subsystem specialists. A specific example is represented by the mission analysis agent
(MAA) that deals with the preliminary design of transfer trajectories. This agent makes use of a number of
optimisation tools to explore extended search domains. The search domain is defined by the launch window, transfer
times, swing-by sequences and control laws.
Each optimiser is handled by a subagent that returns the result of the optimisation to the MAA. The MAA then
allocates new optimisations and selects the appropriate approach and parameter settings. Other computing agents for
space missions are related to typical subsystems and/or elements, such as: power, thermal control, attitude
determination and control, structure and mechanism, onboard computer and data handling, telecommunications,
operations, risk analysis, costs, etc…
Process management agents1,2
The process management agent coordinates all the agents and the exchange of data among them. Moreover it
evaluates the progression of the process through a multi-criteria evaluation. By monitoring the process can produce
warning when inconsistencies occur or can provide hints when the process is diverging or is proceeding toward a
Information retrieval agents3
A central database contains data about past missions and sessions. The database is mined in the background during
each session in order to retrieve relevant information. The same data-mining process is performed on all databases
available locally and on the internet. The information retrieval agent makes use of key words and proceeds with the
query, discriminating among the available information.
Data management agents
Data management agents are in charge of making all output results homogenous and easily exchanged among all
users and agents. Moreover they store relevant results in the database for future use. The data management agents
are also in charge of visualisation and VRML models of the spacecraft, or desired end product of the design process.
Moreover since interdependencies are fundamental during the process and no inconsistencies should occur, data
exchange plays a fundamental role since it determines the influence that an agent has on the decision of another. In
the paper the overall system architecture will be presented with a discussion on the design process models.
Moreover the paper will contain a description of the Concurrent Design Facility, currently existing at the department
of aerospace engineering of Glasgow University, and some results for the Mission Analysis Agent.
References  Klein M., Sayama H., Faratin P., Bar-Yam Y. “The Dynamics of Collaborative Design: Insights
from Complex Systems and Negotiation Research”. Concurrent Engineering: Research and Application, Vol.11 No.
3, September 2003.  D’Ambrosio J., Darr T., Birmingham W. “Hierarchical Concurrent Engineering in a
Multiagent Framework”. Concurrent Engineering: Research and Application, May 1996.  Rhodes B.J., Maes
P.M:“Just-in-time information retrieval agent”, IBM SYSTEMS Journal, Vol 39, Nos 3&4, 2000
2nd Concurrent Engineering
for Space Applications
TOPIC 5: Methods and Tools
Integrated Design and Simulation for Millimetre-Wave Antenna Systems, T. Cwik
(JPL - US)
Design tools integration for collaborative engineering at CNES, P. Bousquet
(CNES - F)
TCDT, The Thermal Analysis & Design Tool to support Concurrent Engineering Activities, M. Gorlani
(BLUE Group - I)
TIW-O, Cost estimating space optical instruments, M. Tuti
(ESA - NL)
ASTOS and its potential at the CDF, A. Wiegand
(TTI - D)
Instrument Design Modelling in a Concurrent Engineering Approach, A. Mestreau-Garreau et al
(ESA - NL)
A Generalized System Architecture Tool for Concurrent Design, M. Schiffner et al
(Univ. Munich - D)
Integrated Design and Simulation for Millimeter-Wave Antenna Systems
Jet Propulsion Laboratory
4800 Oak Grove Dr.
Pasadena CA 91109
Email : firstname.lastname@example.org
The ability to produce an integrated design of remote-sensing instruments early in mission concept development can
produce key advantages in performance and cost. Relating instrument performance to data collection and then to
sensitivity of key scientific parameters is essential to building an efficient observing strategy in a range of
measurement disciplines. One area is in microwave and millimeter-wave active and passive sensors. The design and
development of these instruments requires an environment that can produce a microwave or millimeter-wave optics
design, and can assess sensitivity of key design criteria (beamwidth, gain, sidelobe levels, sensitivity, etc.) to
thermal and mechanical operating environments. In the past, an integrated design tool has been developed to carry
out design and analysis using software building blocks from the computer-aided design, thermal, structural and
electromagnetic analysis fields. The tools were integrated in a common framework, allowing a common geometry
and interchange of data across disciplines relevant to microwave and millimeter-wave systems. It has been used for
concept development and early design in space instruments.
In this paper the development and application of MODTool (Millimeter-wave Optics Design), a design tool that
efficiently integrates existing millimeter-wave optics design software with a solid body modeler and with thermal
and structural analysis packages will be discussed. The design tool is also directly useful over other portions of the
spectrum, though thermal or dynamical loads may have less influence on antenna patterns at the longer wavelengths.
Under a common interface, interactions between the various components of a design can be efficiently evaluated and
optimized. One key component is the use of physical optics analysis software for antenna pattern analysis. This
software has been ported to various platforms including distributed memory, parallel supercomputers to allow rapid
turn-around for electrically large designs. Lessons learned from this development will be addressed to guide future
Design tools integration for collaborative engineering at CNES
Bousquet, P.; Pillet, N.; Benoist, J.; Helin, B.; Vincendet, C.; Vigeant, F.; Gonzalez, F.
Email : email@example.com
CNES decided in 2004 to create an infrastructure based on concurrent engineering methodology dedicated to
preliminary studies of spacecrafts. This infrastructure is called CIC, for “Centre d’Ingénierie Concourante”. This
effort takes place within the frame of PASO (Plateau d’Avant-projet de Systèmes Orbitaux) which has been running
all pre-phase A studies of orbital systems at CNES since 2002. The paper concentrates on the integration of CNES’
existing tools, processes and working methods within CIC. We will first focus on the interface with CAD tools,
since it was established that the geometrical design of the spacecraft was a significant part of the design process in
preliminary studies, and that a particular effort was needed to shorten the elaboration of CAD models, and improve
access to their data from other specialities. Several specific interfaces have been developed with the main CAD tool
currently used for mechanical and configuration design at CNES. The major achievements are: - transfer of
equipment mass and dimension data, from the IDM to the CAD model, and automatic generation of the 3D model of
the corresponding elements, - transfer spacecraft Mass / Centre of Gravity / Inertia properties from the CAD model
to the IDM, - simplification functions of CAD models for analysis and orbital representation purposes, - deployment
of viewers enabling access to the spacecraft 3D geometry for any member of the design team from a standard PC.
The situation of several other disciplines will then be exposed, notably on propulsion, communications, data
handling and avionics. The corresponding data base and preliminary design tools will be presented. Finally, we will
elaborate on prospective developments aimed at improving the efficiency of the design phase process.
TCDT, The thermal analysis and design tool to support
concurrent engineering activities
Gorlani, M.1; Tosetto, A.1; Tentoni, L.2; Perotto, V.2; Rooijackers, H.3
BLUE GROUP, ITALY; 2ALCATEL ALENIA SPACE, Torino, ITALY; 3ESA-ESTEC, NETHERLANDS
Email : firstname.lastname@example.org
A new tool, the Thermal Concept Design Tool (TCDT) has been developed by BLUE GROUP and ALCATEL
ALENIA SPACE Torino (AAS-TO) for preliminary thermal analysis and design of spacecraft. It has been expressly
required by the European Space Agency (ESA) for the Concurrent Design Facility (CDF) of the European Space
Technology Center (ESTEC). The primary objective of the tool is to enable an engineer working in the CDF to
achieve thermal design armonised with the other subsystems, by rapidly exploring different configurations and
assessing design solutions. The ESA requirements have been met in order to provide a tool with the characteristics
of modern software:
• Integrated ANALYSIS & DESIGN environment
• Capability to manage single, parametric and iterative tasks
• Low level and high level activities
• Rapid data exchange with other disciplines
• 3D capabilities for model and analysis checks
• Stochastic and/or parametric ANALYSIS & DESIGN
These characteristics provide very useful practical advantages for the use of the TCDT. For example, in the TCDT
environment, based on Excel, the thermal engineer can store and use all data necessary for his activities. This aspect
allows the following:
• Data used at the same time for model definition, analyses, design and studies with reduction of risk of
discrepancies between documentation and models and allowing a reliable speed up of thermal engineering
• Possibility to manage different configurations
• Quick checks, updating and organisation
• Quick definition of tables and charts for presentations and documents
• Quick data organisation for rapid data exchange with other disciplines
Data can be processed to build models, launch analyses and optimise design solutions within the same environment.
The TCDT can be used both as a thermal calculator to perform design and calculations with analytical methods and
as a sort of preprocessor and postprocessor to perform design and calculations with numerical methods by means of
the external tools.
The TCDT provides the possibility to perform low and high level activities. In fact the user can use the tool as a
traditional thermal modeller in order to define a thermal-geometrical model and than launch a single thermal
analysis, or he can exploit the predefined thermal/geometrical primitives for fast model creation and the predefined
design tasks to speed up analysis and design execution.
To complete the effectiveness of the TCDT, it also provides a parametric and stochastic engine, hence the thermal
engineer can perform parametric studies and uncertainty analysis if needed.
TIW-O, estimating space optical instruments
Tuti, M.; Joumier, H.
Email : Mauro.Tuti@esa.int
In 2004 ESA cost engineering section, under the direction of Mr. Herve Joumier, started the development of a
specific parametric-based tool in order to estimate development and production costs of one of the most important
payloads category in space missions: passive and active optical instruments. The model, calibrated using technical
and cost historical data coming from ESA projects and specialists’ assessment, is implemented in VBA and it is
directly linked to PRICE-H using the “PRICE Enterprise Solution for Microsoft Excel”. TIW-O (this is the name of
the tool) is able to calculate total costs (including phase A, B, detailed hardware and system level activities costs for
phase C/D) of optical instruments, providing a good level of flexibility. In fact the user can choose to run a
simulation starting from a different number of inputs, depending on the level of technical detail available at the time
of the estimate. The tool, at least for passive instruments, is now operational and it was already used in some
Concurrent Design Facilities studies and for the evaluation of several new ESA missions. The reliability of this
parametric estimation instrument is continuously checked and improved as soon as new technical/cost data become
available within ESA.
ASTOS and its potential at the CDF
Wiegand, A.1; Martinez Barrio, A.2
TTI, GERMANY; 2ESTEC, NETHERLANDS
Email : email@example.com
One of the important aspects of a concurrent design facility is a well placed set of analysis tools, which work in the
best possible way together. Since several years ASTOS has been used for various studies at the CDF. Simple re-
entry simulations, complex RLV trajectory optimization and ambitious launcher design studies. ASTOS was linked
with various other tools like Excel for data exchange, Matlab and other tools for Monte Carlo analysis and AAS for
aerodynamic databases. The interface of ASTOS to these other tools has been improved in order to optimize the
work process and to make studies more efficient This presentation will summarize the typical applications and the
new features of ASTOS 6 especially for purpose of concurrent design. Common mission analysis aspects, like safety
analysis, will be considered. Also the range of use of ASTOS in advanced project phases will be presented.
Important for the planning of the CDF software capacity is to know the ongoing and future roadmap of the
development of ASTOS. Therefore the capability of launcher design will be reviewed under the aspect of the
ongoing work in the area of shape design optimization. An important aspect is the capability of ASTOS to perform
Monte Carlo comparable simulations to verify the feasibility of a mission. This functionality has been extended by
an integrated GRAM 99 model and will be extended by some GUI based batch mode function. And finally the data
exchange is most important, so that the interface to Excel or also to other tools will be explained in more detail in
order to find more synergies in the future. In this context data management for such kind of applications will be
discussed and especially the question, if a Spreadsheet application, like MS Excel, is appropriate enough. Depending
on the results from the discussions at the Astrodynamics Workshop at ESTEC also the envisaged Scenario Builder
as a powerful extension or alternative to Excel can be introduced.
Instrument Design Modelling
in a Concurrent Engineering Approach
Mestreau-Garreau, A. ; Gidlund, S. ; Klein, U. ; Carnicero, B. ; Betto, M.
Email : firstname.lastname@example.org , email@example.com
Future programmes, both in Science and Earth Observation (EO), address more and more challenging mission
objectives. Space instruments, both scientific and operational will play an increased role in fulfilling mission
objectives and will result in more complex spacecraft design. Efficient tools are required therefore to assess early in
the definition phase the feasibility of future space borne instruments.
The benefit of the Concurrent Design Facility (CDF) has already been demonstrated for conceptual design and
feasibility study of space mission payload instruments. A specific set-up called Instrument Design Activity (IDA)
has been created and a number of instruments have been designed based on specific models. Recently, CDF has
started the implementation of new generic models based on classification of type of instruments (passive/active,
This paper will present the results of the first step of this implementation activity, dedicated to a cross track passive
microwave instrument. It will describe the design process, the tools and models generated during the activity and the
applicability of the tools and models for future instrument studies, industrial reviews and incorporation of the
instruments on platforms.
A Generalized System Architecture Tool for Concurrent Design
Schiffner, M. ; Brandstätter, M. ; Walter, U.
Institute of Astronautics, Technical University at Munich
Email : M.Schiffner@lrt.mw.tum.de
System modeling, process and organization architecture, and concurrent engineering is one of the main research
areas of the Institute of Astronautics (LRT) for many years. Research work was done in cooperation with aerospace
companies as well as automotive industry.
As part of these research projects a system and cost modeling tool called MuSSat (Modeling and Simulation of
Satellite Systems) was developed for the use in concurrent design centers for satellite development. This tool allows
users to model a system concurrently and to simulate the implications of changes to the model. An interface to Excel
allows the user to model functions for sizing the system, where each component and subsystem of the satellite was
represented by one Excel file. This tool was developed in cooperation with Astrium Friedrichshafen, as well as by
the Institute of Astronautics in several concurrent engineering workshops, which usually lasted one week. In course
of these the students had to design a spacecraft for a given mission. With this tool the students first modeled a
baseline, but also investigated alternatives.
The workshop experiences combined with research work in the last years led to a more elaborate software tool
called vSA-ed. The focus of the evolution was the generalization of the modeling schema used by MuSSat to model
not only the system or costs, but any user-specific abstraction of a system (e.g. functional architecture). The second
evolution feature was the extension to object-oriented design of a system. Therefore vSA-ed offers an object-
oriented approach with diagrams similar to UML. The user therefore is no longer limited to model the system in a
specific domain (e.g. product tree or costs), but the user can model a functional architecture with functions related to
requirements. These modeling features where implemented along with a central database as done before with
MuSSat. The database enables a version and access control to the different projects stored within this database. The
central database also provides the functionality for multi-user design as required for concurrent engineering.
To demonstrate the usability of vSA-ed, it is currently used by 19 students to model the system architecture of a
CubeSat. The students started to model the functional architecture by building a function tree following the creation
of a function flow diagram. Followed by the functional analysis, the design of the satellite was modeled in the same
application. This permitted an integration of the functional architecture and system (product) architecture and
connections between them.
A second tool currently in development at the Institute of Astronautics in cooperation with research institutes and
companies allows the object-oriented description of a system with the focus to compatibility checking. This tool,
called (U)CML-ed, allows a very detailed description of the hard- and software interfaces of an embedded system.
These interface descriptions are used to verify the compatibility of the interconnected hard- and software, in
particular when one or more parts of the system are replaced.
In the future, the Institute of Astronautics will combine vSA-ed and (U)CML-ed to provide a successive tool chain
for system engineers. To exchange data between both tools it is planed to implement a XML-based exchange format
based on the XMI standard. In the long run, it is planned to provide on centralized database where all information of
the system to be modeled will be stored, and any design tool may access the data in the database via a XMI
This paper will describe the vSA-ed tool in detail and its application in the CubeSat project, as well as the lessons
learned. The paper it will also provide an outlook on how the two different tools can interact via a centralized