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Connecting Space Logistics and Architecture - a Pattern Language for Robust Mission Design



Organisational Unit
Implementation progress
10 November 2021

Duration: 36 months


New challenges in sustainable space logistics are arising from novel interconnected and complex-mode missions. Therefore, the current goal of space logistics involves developing conceptual and computational tools that optimise multi-node material-flow networks. The early-stage mission design process can be improved by developing support tools that efficiently generate mission concepts for decision-makers. Robust architectural choices could be favoured by learning from and trading-off solutions already developed for terrestrial networks.

For example, in-situ assembly, manufacturing, and resource utilisation help optimise resupply by maximising reusability and reducing waste. Furthermore, modularity, standardised interfaces, and evolvable design could bring the flexibility to accommodate the high uncertainty resulting from a stakeholder-rich environment and longer utilisation phases. Selecting the best combinations of these strategies is a high-leverage but complex task, as they strongly depend on each other and their environment.

In this project, we will develop:

  1. A pattern-based decision support tool for space mission designers, allowing to generate complex-mode mission concepts, assess candidate architectures, and display information relevant for comparing and preselecting options to investigate further;
  2. A standardised, reproducible, and easy-to-read visualisation system for complex-mode space mission concepts, allowing to communicate candidate architectures along with their strengths and weaknesses efficiently to diverse experts and stakeholders;
  3. The outcomes of a minimum of two application cases using the developed decision support tool and visualisation system. First, mission concepts for supplying a sustainable human Lunar settlement will be generated. Then, sets of mission objectives with concepts using an existing Lunar lander and transfer vehicle will be identified and ranked.
Contract number
OSIP Idea Id
Related OSIP Campaign
Open Channel
Main application area
Generic for multiple space applications
Connecting Space Logistics and Architecture - a Pattern Language for Robust Mission Design