20 October 2020
Throughout the life of every mission, radio signals are transmitted between stations on ground and the spacecraft orbiting Earth, or voyaging across the Solar System. These signals contain instructions and commands sent up from mission control, and beam down data such as views of our planet collected by high-tech instruments on board.
However, this ‘conversation’ between space and Earth is only as good as the conversations taking place on Earth, where effective communication and teamwork are fundamental. Effectively passing on information, experience and challenges are the key to success during critical operations, as teams evolve over the life of decades-long missions, and between different mission teams themselves.
In his second masterclass, Paolo Ferri illustrates the importance of effective communication with the help of Exosat, a flipchart and a ‘blind’ spacecraft, Venus Express.
With 36 years’ of experience at ESA, Paolo Ferri is responsible for mission operations, and he has played a leading role in ensuring the success of missions like Eureca, ESA’s first-ever reusable satellite; Cluster, one of the longest-flying science missions; Venus Express, Europe’s first exploration of Earth’s ‘evil twin’; and Rosetta, humanity’s first landing on a comet.
In five episodes of ‘Leadership at Mission Control’, Paolo takes us through major events in his career at ESA, covering cornerstone missions, first attempts, overcoming technical challenges, building diverse teams, working under pressure and solving the unexpected problems that are part of any space endeavour.
Source : ESA