ISU and ESA Space Academy enhance cooperation


In March 2016, the Education Office of the European Space Agency (ESA) introduced the ESA Academy as an evolution of the former Tertiary Education program.

The objective is to reinforce the support ESA can provide to students to make them well acquainted with standard professional practices.

Once fully operational in late 2016, the ESA Academy will be run in close collaboration with European universities and will bring together existing and new program components, symbiotically integrated:   

• The Hands-on Space Programs
• The Training and Learning Program

In addition to providing access to existing ESA establishments and partners’ infrastructures, the ESA Academy will make use of new dedicated facilities located at ESA’s Redu Centre in Belgium: the Training and Learning Centre (CDF), and the CubeSat Education Centre, an assembly, integration and test facility.

The Concurrent Design Facility or CDF is an integrated professional system that will allow students to investigate the preliminary design of a space mission – or system – and gain direct experience of system engineering design.

The roots of this facility started in the International Space University (ISU), where the previous ESA ESTEC CDF was placed. With the help of amongst others ESA Young Graduates and ISU Master students, programs were developed and defined in ISU for the preliminary design of different types of satellites.

Over the years, several generations of ISU students in the Master program, and also participants of the Executive Space Course, have undergone training in this facility, giving ISU a vast experience in this type of training.

This interaction will now be extended by the presence of ISU faculty in the Redu based CDF, leading to an evolving refinement of the underlying programs on both sites.

At the same time, enthusiastic university students, participating in the short courses in Redu, will become familiar with the ISU programs. And therefore become a great potential recruitment pool for those who want to deepen their knowledge, after their first hands-on space experience, in the dedicated ISU programs such as the Master of Space Studies (MSS) in Strasbourg. This way, the synergy between both organisations will be even strengthened!