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The international post-graduate Master programme for space exploration, SEEDS: education and training from a System Engineering perspective

Abstract : The SEEDS (SpacE Exploration Development Systems) initiative was initially conceived and promoted by Politecnico di Torino and Thales Alenia Space-Italy in 2005. It aimed at establishing a post-graduate International Master Program in space exploration to offer an opportunity to young engineers to get prepared for the future of Europe in space and specifically in human space exploration. ISAE-Supaero in France and University of Leicester in UK participate to SEEDS together with Politecnico di Torino (Italy). Turin, Toulouse and Leicester have a long common tradition of space activities at both the industrial and academic level and within the SEEDS initiative they represent three poles of European cooperation in space programs. The Master course comprises two different steps in sequence: an initial learning phase and a Project Work phase. Both phases pursue a multidisciplinary approach, where all specialized disciplines are integrated to make the students able to acquire the system view and then to accomplish the conceptual design of a selected case-study. The distinguishing feature of SEEDS is the Project Work activity, performed by all students together under the supervision of academic and industrial tutors. Main objective of the Project Work is to train the students on the basic principles of the system engineering design, through their application to a well-defined project related to a specific human space exploration mission. The Project Work includes the Preparatory Work, during which the students identify the complete architecture and overall scenario of the mission, and the conceptual design activities, performed in the three European sites to develop a limited number of building blocks. Seven academic years of activities have passed and seven project works have been successfully completed, dealing with various space exploration themes. The eighth edition is currently under way with the aim of designing a “Transit and return habitable Mars orbital port”. The paper focuses on the description of the Master Program, both from the point of view of its contents, structure and multidisciplinary design methodologies, and on the main results achieved in terms of Project Work activities. The positive experience of seven years of SEEDS is brought to evidence and the lessons learned are discussed.
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Submitted on : Friday, April 16, 2021 - 12:47:08 PM
Last modification on : Friday, April 16, 2021 - 3:52:38 PM


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  • HAL Id : hal-03200244, version 1
  • OATAO : 16094


Nicole Viola, Stéphanie Lizy-Destrez, Bénédicte Escudier, Emmanuel Zenou, Richard Ambrosi, et al.. The international post-graduate Master programme for space exploration, SEEDS: education and training from a System Engineering perspective. 7th International Systems & Concurrent Engineering for Space Applications Conference (SECESA 2016), Oct 2016, Madrid, Spain. pp.0. ⟨hal-03200244⟩



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