Space Systems Engineer


Internship 3 months Didcot, UK

Uploaded 17 Feb 2020

Job Description

Each year we offer opportunities to undergraduate students to gain practical experience,working alongside technical experts at the forefront of scientific research. We offer an invaluable experience with exposure to world class science and technology, and the opportunity to develop working relationships that continue well after your placement has finished.

The ARIEL mission is an exoplanet spectroscopy mission being developed by the European Space Agency (ESA). The mission’s objective is to look at planets travelling around distant stars and discover the details of their makeup and atmosphere.The spacecraft aiming to achieve this objective has a payload composed of a complex space telescope with highly accurate instruments, which will enable scientists to perform this cutting edge research.

The payload is being developed by a consortium of European institutes, all of which are providing hardware and expertise. STFC/RAL Space is managing the payload consortium, which includes the systems engineering activities for the payload. Due to the complexity of the payload and the size of the consortium, thorough and complete systems engineering practices are necessary to achieve mission success.

In the field of Systems Engineering, Model Based Systems Engineering (MBSE) is a concept which has achieved increasing amounts of traction but is not heavily exploited in the European space industry. If applied correctly, MBSE can allow for better and more efficient systems engineering throughout the product life cycle. SysML is the modelling language most commonly associated with MBSE, and its connection with the widely used UML means that a growing number of software packages support it.

Person Specification

In order to explore if MBSE can be beneficial to the development of the ARIEL payload, the successful applicant will:

  • Investigate MBSE and learn the fundamentals of SysML (this may include self-learning or instruction)
  • Become familiar with the ARIEL Payload by working alongside other members of the ARIEL project team, reading documentation and attending meetings
  • Create a SysML model of a part of a space instrument (for example a mechanism)
  • Create a SysML model of the ARIEL Payload
  • Complete a design report describing the model
  • Prepare a presentation describing the work that has been completed and evaluating the applicability of MBSE to the ARIEL Payload.