MSS16 Summer Internship: ESA

European Astronaut Center, Germany: Orla Punch


“I am currently carrying out a traineeship at the European Space Agency’s European Astronaut Centre (EAC) in Cologne for duration of six months.

The area I am working in is called SpaceShip EAC which is ran by Dr. Aidan Cowley, an EAC research fellow. This initiative was started in 2012 by Frank De Winne, Head of the European Astronaut Centre. SpaceShip EAC’s aim is to foster activities relevant to Lunar Exploration and in-situ resource utilization in order to prepare astronauts and technology for future Moon missions, and the team consists of multi-disciplinary backgrounds.

As an architect, the role I have on the team is based on the architecture of ESA’s Moon Village concept. I am working on the architectural design of a future habitat to be used as part of a Lunar analogue facility to be built here at EAC to further expand their simulation capabilities. This new facility will simulate operations on the Lunar surface with a 30 meter diameter dome consisting of Lunar regolith simulant. It will be used in training for Lunar surface exploration, as well as technology and operations development, and human factors development with an overall goal of enabling future human space flight, and a return to the Moon.”


MSS16 Summer Internship: ComeX

ComeX, France: Mohamed Makthoum

EVA Simulation

Makthoum is currently working on European Union’s H2020 project RegoLight. He will be working at ComeX and LIQUIFIER system group. During his internship he will be researching on lunar base scenario’s in order to design the mission scenario for RegoLight project and also to develop innovative application and spin-off from RegoLight project. He also got the opportunity to witness the EVA simulation for the Moonwalk project.

MSS16 Summer Internship: Japan

Japanese Team; William Jones, Martina Russitano Lanza and Jonathan Stimmer at Tohoku University in Sendai.


Martina has joined the Hakuto Team of the Space Robotics Laboratory, managed and operated by Ispace, a startup founded by Takeshi Hakamada and Prof. Kazuya Yoshida. She will design a wireless communication system for swarm Intelligent robots based on LTE technology. This system will represent a testbed for further research and implementation on groups of multiple rovers for lunar exploration. Her supervisor, Nathan Britton (MSS09), is the engineering manager of the Hakuto Team.

William is under the supervision of Prof. Kazuya Yoshida, director and CTO of Ispace, and has joined a team in the Space Robotics Laboratory that have recently begun the development of a legged robotic system to be used for resource utilization in the rocky environment of the polar regions of the Moon, with funding awarded by the JAXA Space Exploration Innovation Hub Centre.  He is currently working on researching insect like robotic designs that utilize small spines on the feet of the limbs to aid in climbing, and will assist in design and testing of the robot further into his internship.

Jonathan is working in the Department of Earth Science at Tohoku University. After applying through Tohoku University, he was awarded a scholarship to do his internship through the COLABS scholarship program. He is the first MSS student from ISU to be interning in the Earth Science department of Tohoku University. He is currently researching the formation of organic molecules during the late heavy bombardment. He constructed a gas line experiment to replicate and test some of these early Earth conditions, and will begin experimenting with the constructed apparatus this week.

MSS16 Summer Internship: Inmarsat, UK

Inmarsat, UK: Paul Iliffe

paul internship.JPG

Paul Iliffe is undertaking his internship at Inmarsat, which is a provider of global Mobile Satellite Services (MSS) and serves government, aviation, maritime, and enterprise market segments. He is working with the Service Assurance Problem Management team, which is responsible for measuring and improving the user experience for users of Inmarsat’s satellite communications. Within this team his project will focus on the understanding of the customer experience, analyzing data connectivity, and producing reports that will assist in improving the service.

Cultural Night

Cultural Night is the night where a selection of students present the countries they come from and cook dishes that are special to their culture that is shared with the rest of the class and any visitors that wish to attend.

The countries presenting and providing delicious food were  Indonesia, Malaysia, Spain, Portugal and Bulgaria.


Each country was presented as a powerpoint presentation where the students gave facts and history of their countries as well as local food and where they are from.

Food made by Spain (Carlos and David)
Food made by Malaysia and Indonesia.


After the tummies were filled the students of ISU enjoyed more bonding activities such as ping pong and Karaoke. Many great songs were sung!!

Professional visit to DLR and IRS


The class of MSS16, eager and enthusiastically participated in a professional visit to DLR and IRS on the 1st of March, 2016.

We started off early in the morning and reached the DLR’s Lampoldshausen site, which is a test facility for rocket propulsion at around 9.30 am.


As we entered the building, a display of various R&D models that included steam generators, combustion chambers and upper stages that belonged to Ariane and Viking series greeted us.

A welcome speech by Dr.Stark giving a glimpse of DLR facilities and its contributions to the space sector followed successively. We were then taken around the site by a DLR representative, who informed us about the current testing facilities and technologies available and the role of DLR in such processes. Some of which are the test stands for flight acceptance of micro propulsion engines, altitude facilities, upper stage testing for the new Vinci engine and cryogenic testing facilities. A video clip that gave a better insight to the testing process and R&D facilities, proving DLR to be a reliable contributor in space sciences followed next.


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MSS16 Moscow Trip

Students of MSS16 class decided to continue Pro Tolyarenko’s tradition of an annual trip to Moscow to visit various space significant places. Trips were organised by Alec Bartos who we greatly thank for his hard work in organising this trip. Definitely organise this trip in your year if you want to be inspired by country where space originated from.

Red Square
University of Moscow

This was a great trip and we were able to talk to students working on current space project missions and launching their own cubsat missions.

Star City – MSS16 Students

Star City was incredible even though it snowed and rained heavily all day. It was very inspiring to see where the astronauts trained and we even caught a glimpse of a Japanese astronaut showing his parents the training facilities.

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