The NASA Academy of Program/Project & Engineering Leadership conducted its second Principal Investigator (PI) Team Masters Forum April 27-29, 2010, in Annapolis, Maryland.

The forum, a collaborative effort between the Academy and NASA’s Science Mission Directorate (SMD), brought together teams from the New Frontiers Mission-3 and the Mars Scout-2 Mission, as well as others selected for a future Mission of Opportunity, to gain a better understanding of the role of a Principal Investigator (PI) at NASA. Master practitioners from past science missions shared stories, perspectives, lessons learned, and best practices with their colleagues.

Read more about the second PI Team Forum.
View All Past PI Team Masters Forum Videos

 

Panel Chairs and Presenters

Peter Bedini, Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory Andrew Cheng, Applied Physics Laboratory Dennon Clardy, Marshall Space Flight Center Michael Drake, University of Arizona Lunar and Planetary Laboratory Larry Esposito, University of Colorado Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics Orlando Figueroa, Goddard Space Flight Center
Eric Finnegan, Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory Bill Folkner, Jet Propulsion Laboratory Paula Geisz, NASA Headquarters Angelo (Gus) Guastaferro, NASA APPEL and NASA retiree Noel W. Hinners, Consultant G. Scott Hubbard, Stanford University
Bruce Jakosky, University of Colorado Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics Bradley Jolliff, Washington University in St. Louis Steve Jolly, Lockheed Martin Dante Lauretta, University of Arizona Lunar and Planetary Laboratory Kenneth W. Ledbetter, NASA Headquarters Stefano Livi, Southwest Research Institute
Roy Maizel, NASA Headquarters John Mather, Goddard Space Flight Center Dennis Matson, Jet Propulsion Laboratory Dennis McCarthy, Consultant Pat McCormick, Hampton University Adriana Ocampo, NASA Headquarters
Brad Perry, Langley Research Center Jim Russell, Hampton University Joan Salute, NASA Headquarters Steve Saunders, Lunar and Planetary Institute Chris Scolese, NASA Headquarters Ed Sedivy, Lockheed Martin Space Systems
Sean Solomon, Carnegie Institution of Washington Ed Weiler, NASA Headquarters

 

 

Presentations

COBE Mission: Extraordinary Challenge, Exceptional Outcome

Speakers

  • Michael Drake, Panel Chair, is regents’ professor and head of the Department of Planetary Sciences and director of the Lunar and Planetary Laboratory at the University of Arizona. His current research interests center on the formation and evolution of rocky planetary bodies, why Earth has water, and the return of samples from an organic-rich asteroid of the sort that might have seeded Earth with organics leading to the evolution of life. He has published more than one hundred peer-reviewed papers. Mr. Drake has chaired or been a member of numerous NASA, National Science Foundation, and National Research Council committees and has organized several international conferences. He is a past president of the Geochemical Society and of the Meteoritical Society. He is also a Fellow of the Meteoritical Society, a Fellow of the American Geophysical Union, a Fellow of the Geochemical Society and the European Association of Geochemistry, and a member of the American Astronomical Society. In 2004 he received the Leonard Medal of the Meteoritical Society for lifetime achievement in planetary science.
  • Noel W. Hinners consults for NASA, the aerospace industry, and 4-D Systems, which supports the NASA Academy of Program/Project and Engineering Leadership. He retired in January 2002 from Lockheed Martin Astronautics, Denver, where he was vice president of flight systems with primary responsibility for their NASA missions. He joined Martin Marietta Corporate as vice president of strategic planning in 1989. Dr. Hinners served as NASA associate deputy administrator and chief scientist, director of Goddard Space Flight Center, director of the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum, NASA’s associate administrator for Space Science, and director of Lunar Programs. Before entering government service, he was department head of Lunar Exploration with Bellcomm, Inc., which he joined as a member of the technical staff in 1963. At Bellcomm, he was responsible for Apollo lunar science formulation and Apollo site selection support to NASA. Dr. Hinners was the founding editor of Geophysical Research Letters, a rapid-publication journal of the American Geophysical Union, and founding president of the Maryland and Colorado Space Business Roundtables. He has been on and chaired oodles of space-related committees and has published on NASA programs. He currently serves on the executive committee of NASA’s Mars Exploration Program Analysis Group, the Science Committee of the NASA Advisory Committee, and the External Advisory Board of the University of Colorado Aerospace Engineering Sciences Department. He is the executive secretary of the NASA Chief Engineer’s Management Operations Working Group.
  • John C. Mather is the senior project scientist for the James Webb Space Telescope at Goddard Space Flight Center. His research centers on infrared astronomy and cosmology. As an NRC postdoctoral fellow at the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (New York City), he led the proposal efforts from 1974 to 1976 for the Cosmic Background Explorer (COBE) and came to Goddard to be the study scientist (19761988), project scientist (19881998), and principal investigator for the far infrared absolute spectrophotometer on COBE. He showed that the cosmic microwave background radiation has a blackbody spectrum within 50 parts per million, confirming the big bang theory to extraordinary accuracy. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Nobel Prize in Physics (2006) with George Smoot for the COBE work and the NASA Distinguished Service Medal (2007). He is a member of many professional societies, including the National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Swarthmore College with highest honors in physics in 1968 and his PhD in physics from the University of California at Berkeley in 1974. His doctoral advisor was Paul Richards, and his thesis on measurements of the cosmic microwave background radiation led directly to the COBE satellite.
  • Dennis K. McCarthy has had the fortunate experience to work in the federal government, academia, and industry. He is currently a consultant to NASA to review specific programs. He was in industry as the Swales Aerospace vice president, director of engineering. Prior to that, he was at Johns Hopkins University as the program director for the first principal investigator program at a university: the Far Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer. Before that, Mr. McCarthy was in the federal government at Goddard Space Flight Center. He served as the deputy associate director of flight projects for Hubble Space Telescope in 1994. Previously, he was the deputy project manager for the Hubble Space Telescope servicing mission. Other positions he held include associate director for the Space Sciences Directorate and deputy project manager for the Cosmic Background Explorer, which won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2006.
  • Dante Lauretta is an associate professor of planetary science and cosmochemistry at the University of Arizonas Lunar and Planetary Laboratory. He received a BS in physics and mathematics from the University of Arizona in 1993 and a PhD in Earth and planetary sciences from Washington University in St. Louis in 1997. His research interests focus on the chemistry and mineralogy of asteroids and comets as determined by in situ laboratory analysis and spacecraft observations. This work is important for constraining the chemistry of the solar nebula, understanding the origin of complex organic molecules in the early solar system, and constraining the initial chemical inventories of the terrestrial planets. He is an expert in the analysis of extraterrestrial materials. In particular, he uses inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry, scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, electron microprobe analysis, and X-ray diffraction to study meteorites, lunar samples, and particles returned by Stardust. Dr. Lauretta was the recipient of the 2002 Nier Prize of the Meteoritical Society and the 1995 Nininger Meteorite Award.

Abstracts

  • The Environment
    Noel Hinners rhapsodized on the major challenges he had as a center director in enabling the science and engineering implementation of the Cosmic Background Explorer (COBE). The internal Goddard Space Flight Center environment for COBE was unusual in that it was managed by the Engineering Directorate to provide essential hands-on training to the engineers. The science and engineering aspects of COBE were in and of themselves challenging. These were exacerbated by episodic changes in launch vehicles. Combined, this led to much more staffing than originally envisioned, further stressing the center. Looking outward, there were the challenges in dealing with NASA Headquarters (13.7 miles distant) and the pressures to remain on the Space Shuttle rather than switching back to an ELV. Sanity won.
  • The Mission
    John Mather discussed the challenges of organizing and running two teams: the COBE science team and the James Webb Space Telescope ( JWST) science team. COBE’s three instruments presented unique challenges. Each instrument had its own principal investigator, so there were different executive styles, which Dr. Mather compared. Also, the Science Working Group was constituted as co-investigator on all three instruments, so there were team-level challenges and significant conflicts to be managed, as documented in the book The Very First Light: The True Inside Story of the Scientific Journey Back to the Dawn of the Universe.Two of the PIs were in house at Goddard, leading to excellent communication with the engineering teams, while one PI was external at Berkeley, leading to significant difficulties that had to be managed by recruiting an in-house deputy PI. The special situation of a government team being led by an external investigator required serious negotiation, since NASA does not delegate management of its civil service staff to outside people. The whole science team played a major role in project decisions regarding improving the instrument sensitivity for the differential microwave radiometer (DMR) instrument (a good thing, otherwise the DMR would not have detected cosmic fluctuations).On the JWST observatory, a strategic mission for NASA, the European Space Agency, and the Canadian Space Agency, the science team is advisory and team members are not co-investigators on all the instruments. The comparison was illustrative.
  • The Project
    Dennis McCarthy discussed several aspects of program management for robotic missions. His topics included using a systematic approach involving three phases: determining evaluation, validation and verification, and benchmarks; defining responsibilities of line and project management in the successful organization; and handling “the people problem” during the formulation and implementation phases. He also discussed what is involved in creating a work agreement, including predicting management success, achieving program excellence, and understanding root causes, systems engineering and its various phases, NASA governance, and requirements.

Presentations

The Successful Project Team: Key Roles and Responsibilities

Speakers

  • Larry W. Esposito, Panel Chair, is the principal investigator of the proposed Surface-Atmosphere Geochemical Explorer mission to Venus. He is a professor of astrophysical and planetary sciences at the University of Colorado. He has experience with U.S., Russian, and European space missions and is the principal investigator of the Cassini ultraviolet imaging spectrograph. He has served on a number of NASA and National Academies of Science advisory committees, including his present membership on the Committee for Cost Growth in Earth and Space Science Missions.
  • For the past forty-six years, M. Patrick McCormick has been performing research on the development and application of sensors for measurement in Earth’s atmosphere. This research has primarily focused on lidar and satellite limb extinction (occultation) techniques for global characterization of aerosols, clouds, ozone, and other atmospheric species. His research areas include the development of aerosol, ozone, and water vapor trends and climatologies; the study of polar stratospheric clouds and their characterization; and the role of aerosols in climate, cloud properties, and atmospheric chemistry. He is a Fellow of the American Geophysical Union, a Fellow of the American Meteorological Society, and a member of NASA’s Advisory Council Earth Science Subcommittee. Dr. McCormick is principal investigator for SAM II, SAGE I, SAGE II, SAGE III, and LITE, and coprincipal investigator for SAM and Cloud-Aerosol Lidar and Infrared Pathfinder Satellite Observation satellite experiments. He is the recipient of the NASA Exceptional Scientific Achievement Medal (1981), the American Meteorological Society’s Jule G. Charney Award (1991), the NASA Space Act Award (1994), the NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal (1996), the NASA and Department of the Interior William T. Pecora Award (1996), the NASA Distinguished Public Service Medal (2000), and the American Meteorological Society’s Remote-Sensing Lecturer Award (2000). Dr. McCormick has published more than 430 papers, journal articles, NASA publications, and books, including 270 refereed journal publications. He is co-director of the Center for Atmospheric Sciences at Hampton University and previously spent thirty years at Langley Research Center.
  • Steve Saunders was a scientist at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena for thirty-two years. At JPL he was project scientist for the Magellan Venus mission and the Mars Odyssey mission. After leaving JPL, he worked at NASA Headquarters for five years, where he was NASA program scientist for the Planetary Data System, Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, and Mars Express. He also managed NASA’s Planetary Geology and Geophysics Program, which supports about 170 U.S. scientists. Dr. Saunders was the recipient of two NASA Exceptional Service Medals and the NASA Exceptional Scientific Achievement medal. He graduated from the University of Wisconsin, and after serving in the Peace Corps as a geologist in Ghana, he went on to Brown University for his PhD in geology. Dr. Saunders currently is employed by the Lunar and Planetary Institute and spends much of his time analyzing some of the Mars and Venus data he has helped to collect. He spends his free time blacksmithing and doing other metal arts work in Edgerton, Wisconsin, where he has a home and shop.
  • G. Scott Hubbard has been an innovator and leader in science, technology, and management for more than thirty years, including twenty years with NASA. He currently is a professor in the department of aeronautics and astronautics at Stanford University. From 2002 to 2006, Mr. Hubbard was the director of Ames Research Center with an operating budget of $700 million and responsibility for 2,600 people. In 2003 he served as the sole NASA representative on the Columbia Accident Investigation Board, where he directed impact testing that demonstrated the definitive physical cause of the loss of Columbia. In 2000 he served as NASA’s first Mars program director and successfully restructured the entire Mars program in the wake of mission failures. He is the founder of NASA’s Astrobiology Institute, establishing it in 1998. He conceived the Mars Pathfinder mission with its airbag landing and was the manager for NASA’s highly successful Lunar Prospector mission. Earlier, Mr. Hubbard led a start-up high-technology company in the San Francisco Bay area and was a staff scientist at the Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. He has received many honors, including NASA’s highest award, the Distinguished Service Medal. He was elected to the International Academy of Astronautics, is a Fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA), and was also awarded the Von Karman medal by the AIAA. He has written more than fifty scientific papers on research and technology. Mr. Hubbard received his undergraduate degree in physics and astronomy at Vanderbilt University and his graduate education in semiconductor physics at the University of CaliforniaBerkeley. He continues his forty-year interest in music by regularly playing guitar in a jazz group.
  • Orlando Figueroa was appointed the deputy center director for Science and Technology at the Goddard Space Flight Center in January 2010. His past experiences include director for the Applied Engineering and Technology Directorate at Goddard and the following positions at NASA Headquarters: deputy associate administrator for programs in the Science Mission Directorate, director for the Solar System Exploration Division, director for Mars Exploration, and NASA deputy chief engineer for systems engineering. Experience prior to NASA Headquarters includes twenty-two years at Goddard as head of the Cryogenics Technology Section; lead cryogenic engineer for the Cosmic Background Explorer mission; manager for the Superfluid Helium On-Orbit Transfer shuttle experiment; manager for the Small Explorers (SMEX) project; Explorers program manager; and director of Systems, Technology, and Advanced Concepts.He obtained a Bachelor of Science in mechanical engineering from the University of Puerto Rico, Mayaguez, and completed advanced courses in mechanical engineering at the University of Maryland. He received an honorary doctorate degree in science from Dominican College in New York in 2004. Mr. Figueroa has received numerous awards, including the 2005 Service to America Medal Federal Employee of the Year, Distinguished (2004) and Meritorious (2000) Presidential Rank Awards, NASA Outstanding Leadership Medals in 1993 and 2004, the 2004 Community Stars Award from the Maryland Science Week Commission, and the 2002 Pioneer Award from the Hispanic Engineer National Achievement Awards Corporation. Hispanic Business Magazine named him one the most influential Hispanics in the Nation in 2004 and 2005. He is the author of several technical publications in the field of cryogenics, the SMEX missions, and the Mars Exploration Program.
  • Edward J. Sedivy is the chief engineer for Lockheed Martin’s Sensing and Exploration Systems. This includes interplanetary spacecraft, NASA and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration weather satellites, space science instruments, Hubble Space Telescope and Spitzer Infrared Observatory, advanced laser technology, and advanced space power generation. He is also the Mars Atmosphere Volatile Evolution program manager. Previously, Mr. Sedivy was the Lockheed Martin program manager for the Mars Phoenix Lander, which successfully completed its mission in November 2008. He served as the spacecraft manager for Spitzer, chief systems engineer for the Mars Odyssey 2001 orbiter, and chief engineer for the primary science instrument on the Chandra X-Ray Observatory. He has received numerous awards from Rockwell International, Lockheed Martin, and NASA and has been awarded two NASA Public Service Medals and the Popular Mechanics Breakthrough Award for 2008. Mr. Sedivy received his Bachelor of Science in electrical engineering from Colorado State University, from which he received the Distinguished Alumni Award.
  • Adriana C. Ocampo is the lead program executive at the NASA Headquarters Science Mission Directorate, in the Planetary Science Division, and is responsible for the New Frontiers program, the Juno mission to Jupiter, and the New Horizons mission to Pluto. She is also the lead Venus scientist responsible for NASA’s collaboration in the European Space Agency’s (ESA) Venus Express mission, and the Venus Exploration Analysis Group (VEXAG), which develops strategic plans and assessments for the exploration of this planet. Ms. Ocampo was a research scientist at the California Institute of Technology’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory ( JPL), where she had worked since 1973. In 2005 she was the investigation scientist for the Mars Odyssey gamma-ray spectrometer/high-energy neutron detector/MARIE and also worked for the Mars Program Science Division and the Solid Earth and Natural Program. From 2002 to 2004 she was a senior research staff member at ESA, conducting research in comparative planetology of solar system bodies. She was a member of the Mars Express project scientist team, developing and implementing the payload-commissioning plan. She also acted as the deputy project scientist for Venus Express, developing science operation architecture and an educational outreach plan.
  • Joan Salute is a senior technical manager with thirty years of experience in NASA projects. Her current position in the NASA Headquarters Planetary Sciences Division includes serving as the lead program executive (PE) for the Lunar Quest Program and PE for both the Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer and Radiation Belt Storm Probes projects. Prior NASA Headquarters responsibilities included leading two agencywide teams, one responding to a Presidential Commission on behalf of the agency and one at the direction of the NASA Associate Administrator. During twenty-three years at Ames Research Center, her positions grew from Earth science research to science management, to project management, to technical organization management. Ms. Salute managed two flight projects to demonstrate the performance of ultra-hightemperature thermal-protection materials; projects to market and commercialize NASA-developed technology; and commercial applications of remote-sensing projects, including a project with Robert Mondavi Winery and a commercial potato grower. She served as associate administrator in both the Aeronautics Directorate and the Information Technology Directorate. Ms. Salute is a Stanford University Graduate School of Business Sloan Fellow (MS in management science), has an MBA in high-technology management from Golden Gate University, and has a BS in mathematical sciences from Purdue University.

Abstracts

  • Principal Investigator
    Building a principal investigator (PI)led team for a NASA mission relies on important relationships the PI has with the project manager and systems engineer as well as specific PI traits, qualities, and responsibilities. How a PI chooses the science team and structures the mission team was discussed, as well as how the PI develops a clear Mission Requirements Document and follows the important process of descoping. Finally, the importance of the total involvement and perseverance of the PI in following the mission development were discussed, along with key indicators of mission development status (e.g., the use of “planned” versus “actual” monthly milestone accomplishments).
  • Project Scientist
    This presentation covered experiences and lessons learned as project scientist during the Mars Odyssey mission and a description of the duties of a planetary mission project scientist.
  • Project Manager
    Lunar Prospector, the first competitively selected planetary mission in NASA’s Discovery Program, was described, with emphasis on the lessons learned from managing a very low-cost project. Developed during the height of the faster-better-cheaper era, pitfalls of this philosophy and the mechanisms by which they were avoided were highlighted. Insights into governmentindustry teaming and program and project management were discussed in some detail. The importance of team chemistry and the roles and responsibilities of NASA Headquarters, NASA field centers, and academic and industrial partners were also examined.
  • Systems Engineer
    One of the most important responsibilities within the PI-led team is that of the systems engineer. Drawing from his experience in numerous capacitiesincluding program and project management and on a number of science missions at multiple levels of scaleOrlando Figueroa has consistently used systems engineering throughout the mission development process to ensure its success. In his previous position, he had overall responsibility for the development of systems engineers at Goddard. He discussed the key roles of the systems engineer and the importance of the systems engineering process in the development of a space-science flight mission.
  • Industry/Contractor Team
    Industry is a valuable member of the PI-led mission team and provides a different perspective from project leadership and science members. The need to embed compelling science coupled with the cost-capped execution model creates a set of constraints that drive “best-fit”solutions. The experienced industry partner often becomes the “voice of reason” that seeks to accommodate the project/NASA center and PI science needs, while keeping an eye on execution risk. Industry is motivated to push for the early flow-down of science requirements, the development of a mission concept that balances complexity and cost, and prudent application of new technology. When well executed, the competed PI-led mission team effectively bonds together during the CSR and site visit activities. Examples included include Phoenix and MAVEN.
  • Program Executive
    The Science Mission Directorate has designated the program executive (PE) as the key technical point of contact for its projectsan important function that plays a vital role between executing the project and providing top-level executive oversight. In addition to remaining cognizant of the progress of a project, the PE can also be an effective advocate, so it is important to consider the PE as an integral member of the project team, rather than a Headquarters “overseer.” Recognizing these roles, understanding how they interrelate, and effectively communicating with and involving the PE can greatly increase the value of this function for the project team.

Presentations

FUSE: Hard Choices in a Cost-Constrained Environment

Speakers

  • Stefano Livi, Panel Chair, graduated in physics from the University of Florence in 1982 (summa cum laude) with a thesis on solar wind instrumentation. After post-doctoral stages at the Max Planck Institute for Aeronomy (now MPS) and at Harvard University, where he participated in the development of ultraviolet (UV) coronagraphs, he graduated in astrophysics (summa cum laude) in 1989 from the University of Rome with a thesis on simulation and analysis of data from the Helios spacecraft. During his thirty-year career, Dr. Livi has participated in the design, development, calibration, and in-orbit operation of more than twenty plasma analyzers, energetic particles sensors, mass spectrometers, and UV coronagraphs. He personally managed all activities, scientific as well as programmatic, for the sensors MICS on POLAR, ISENA on SAC-B, LEMMS on Cassini, and RTOF on Rosetta. Currently Dr. Livi is the principal investigator for the Discovery Mission of Opportunity Strofio, to be flown on the BepiColombo mission to Mercury, and of the Focused Opportunity for Solar Orbiter HIS sensor. He has written more than two hundred refereed scientific publications.
  • Warren Moos was the principal investigator for the Far Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer (FUSE), a low-cost, budget-capped, space astronomy mission. His other major space mission activities have included being co-investigator for the space telescope imaging spectrograph, the Hopkins Ultraviolet Telescope, the Voyager Ultraviolet Spectrometer, and the Apollo 17 ultraviolet spectrometer. He has used the Hubble Space Telescope, Extreme Ultraviolet Explorer, International Ultraviolet Explorer (IUE), and Copernicus as a guest observer and was part of the commissioning team for IUE. He was the lead scientist for a number of sounding-rocket space astronomy experiments and, as part of this effort, has tested new instrumentation and detector concepts prior to their potential adoption for satellite missions. At present, Mr. Moos is the co-chair of the Joint Dark Energy Mission Interim Science Working Group. He is a research professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the Johns Hopkins University.
  • Dennis K. McCarthy has had the fortunate experience to work in the federal government, academia, and industry. He is currently a consultant to NASA to review specific programs. He was in industry as the Swales Aerospace vice president, director of engineering. Prior to that, he was at Johns Hopkins University as the program director for the first principal investigator program at a university: the Far Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer. Before that, Mr. McCarthy was in the federal government at Goddard Space Flight Center. He served as the deputy associate director of flight projects for Hubble Space Telescope in 1994. Previously, he was the deputy project manager for the Hubble Space Telescope servicing mission. Other positions he held include associate director for the Space Sciences Directorate and deputy project manager for the Cosmic Background Explorer, which won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2006.
  • Jeffrey W. Kruk is a principal research scientist in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Johns Hopkins University (JHU). He is presently working on development of the Joint Dark Energy Mission, a collaborative effort of NASA and the Department of Energy. He was the system scientist for the Far Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer (FUSE) mission prior to its launch, and the mission systems engineer and deputy chief of observatory operations following launch. His responsibilities included oversight of development and integration of the fine error sensor, ground and inflight calibration, development of the data processing pipeline, and lead effort to redesign the attitude-control system in response to the failures of reaction wheels and gyroscopes. Prior to the FUSE mission, he participated in the two flights of the Hopkins Ultraviolet Telescope on the Astro-1 and -2 Space Shuttle missions. Mr. Kruk was deputy project scientist for Astro-2, for which he upgraded the primary mirror and spectrograph and led flight operations. He was a member of the High-Energy Physics group at Rice University prior to moving to JHU, where he worked on experiments at Brookhaven, Los Alamos, and Fermilab.

Abstract

  • The Far Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer (FUSE) was conceived in the era of large, Delta-class explorer missions. The budget realities of the mid-1990s forced a major restructuring of the mission at the start of its construction phase. Warren Moos, principal investigator; Dennis McCarthy, project manager for the construction phase; and Jeffrey Kruk, chief system scientist for the operations phase, described how the FUSE team preserved the primary scientific capabilities of the mission, significantly reduced the cost of the mission, and dealt with major spacecraft malfunctions during operations.

Presentations

Staying Within the Box

Speakers

  • Bruce M. Jakosky, Panel Chair, is a professor and associate director for science in the Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics (LASP) at the University of Colorado in Boulder. He has been at LASP since graduating with his PhD from Caltech in 1982. His research focuses on Mars’s surface and atmosphere and on time scales ranging from diurnal to the four-billion-year evolution. Dr. Jakosky has a strong interest in the potential for life on Mars and elsewhere and is exploring the characteristics of Mars that relate to habitability by microbes; most recently, this involves determining the geochemical energy available to support metabolism and understanding the history of Martian volatiles and climate. His two sole-author books are The Search for Life on Other Planets and Science, Society, and the Search for Life in the Universe. He has been an investigator on the Mars Observer, Clementine, Mars Global Surveyor, Mars Odyssey, Mars Science Laboratory, and Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter missions and led the Colorado team in the NASA Astrobiology Institute for ten years. Dr. Jakosky is the principal investigator on the Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN) mission, to be launched in 2013, and has been working on the mission since 2003. He finally took up skiing just a few years ago and is doing his part to keep United Airlines in business.
  • Formerly chairman and CEO of the electronics firm nVIEW Corporation, Angelo (Gus) Guastaferro is experienced in technology management. He served as vice president with the Lockheed Martin Missiles and Space Company and was deputy director of the NASA Ames Research Center. Mr. Guastaferro is also experienced in project and program management and was involved in the Viking mission to Mars and in Large Space Structures; he also served as director of Planetary Programs while at NASA. He is currently consulting for NASA on future space systems and serving as Chair Emeritus of Hampton Roads Technology Council and as director of Virginia Technology Alliances. He has a BSME from the New Jersey Institute of Technology, an MBA from Florida State University, and an AMP from Harvard Business School.
  • Dennis Matson earned his bachelor’s degree in physics at San Diego State University in 1964. He came to Caltech and in 1972 received a PhD in planetary science. Since then he has carried on observations of solar system bodies and has developed methods for the interpretation of remote-sensing data. He has used imaging, spectrophotometry, radiometry, and spectroscopy in determinations of the surface states and compositions of atmosphereless solar system bodies; participated in the development of instrumentation for astronomical telescopes and spacecraft; and carried out scientific investigations using the International Ultraviolet Explorer and the Infrared Astronomical Satellite in orbit about the Earth and with the Galileo and Cassini-Huygens spacecraft in the outer solar system. During the four-year Cassini-Huygens prime mission, Dr. Matson served as the project scientist, leading more than 270 scientists in the United States and in Europe in developing and carrying out Cassini’s investigations. Also, he served as the study scientist for the Titan and Saturn System Mission, a possible flagship mission to the Saturnian system. He is a senior research scientist at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. His current research is on early, outersolar system chronology.
  • Edward J. Sedivy is the chief engineer for Lockheed Martin’s Sensing and Exploration Systems. This includes interplanetary spacecraft, NASA and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration weather satellites, space science instruments, Hubble Space Telescope and Spitzer Infrared Observatory, advanced laser technology, and advanced space power generation. He is also the Mars Atmosphere Volatile Evolution program manager. Previously, Mr. Sedivy was the Lockheed Martin program manager for the Mars Phoenix Lander, which successfully completed its mission in November 2008. He served as the spacecraft manager for Spitzer, chief systems engineer for the Mars Odyssey 2001 orbiter, and chief engineer for the primary science instrument on the Chandra X-Ray Observatory. He has received numerous awards from Rockwell International, Lockheed Martin, and NASA and has been awarded two NASA Public Service Medals and the Popular Mechanics Breakthrough Award for 2008. Mr. Sedivy received his Bachelor of Science in electrical engineering from Colorado State University, from which he received the Distinguished Alumni Award.

Abstract

  • These presentations illustrated the techniques critical to managing resources of science projects led by principal investigators (PI). Those involved in Viking, Cassini, Phoenix, and MAVEN shared their experiences about managing resources and margins successfully using very different management approaches and techniques.The Viking mission was significantly oversubscribed and required major management attention to allocate and monitor these critical resources, placing great stress on the deputy program manager who was assigned to manage this task, resulting in a “chief designer” approach. The techniques successfully applied on Viking stand as a model for application to smaller science space projects, and the lessons learned can be applied to future space science programs.Cassini was an international collaboration with resources that were spread across the contributing agencies, so a less centralized allocation scheme was needed. Cassini’s challenge of how to handle resource margins for payload instruments resulted in the creation of the Resources Trading System (RTS), a creative solution to a common problem. The Cassini payload manager allocated payload resources (e.g., space, weight, power), and margin included dollars by fiscal year, mass, power, and data rate. An exchange was set up to facilitate trading margin among the instruments and also with the “spacecraft.” If instrument A had “excess” mass, the PI could place a “sell” offer on the exchange, stating the amount of mass and the price (e.g., $, W, bps). If instrument B was short of mass and its PI liked the price, he could “buy.” The payload manager then recorded the “trade,” and the official allocations to A and B were changed accordingly. This was a winwin situation as each party felt they had improved their balance of resources.

    Phoenix was developed using a mature lander and a number of instruments that were in various stages of development, from instrument development to a fully developed science package, so this mission was initiated with adequate margin. This served the project well, as unanticipated challenges arose during the mission. Proper attention to margins is a key aspect of establishing a strong foundation for program execution, and it goes beyond technical margins to include schedule and cost margins. Understanding the application of heritage for missions is also key to avoiding surprises that may erode project margins. Robust margins for cost and schedule are particularly important for New Frontiers #3 because of the lag between selection and beginning Phase B. The current flight-project execution environment is very dynamic and affects risk during Phases B, C, and D. The benefits of robust margins and their relationship to cost and schedule control were shared, with examples including Phoenix and MAVEN.

Presentations

SMD Mission: MESSENGER

Speakers

    • William (Bill) M. Folkner Panel Chair, from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, is the principal investigator on the NASA Mission of Opportunity for Lander Radio-science on ExoMars. He is currently the cognizant engineer for development of planetary ephemerides for NASA projects and a participating scientist on the Mars Exploration Rover project. He has significant experience with spacecraft radio signal analysis, including leading a Mars rotation investigation on the Mars Pathfinder project, leading the Earth-detection program for the Huygens probe on Titan for the Doppler wind experiment, and leading the Earth detection of the Galileo probe radio signal for estimation of wind in Jupiter. Mr. Folkner is also the principal investigator on a NASA Earth Science Instrument Incubator Program task for development of an interspacecraft laser-ranging system for Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment-2. His previous responsibilities include project technologist for the ST7 project for the NASA New Millennium Program and lead of the Laser Interferometer Space Antenna pre-Phase A study activity.
    • Sean C. Solomon is director of the Department of Terrestrial Magnetism of the Carnegie Institution of Washington. Educated at the California Institute of Technology (BS, 1966) and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) (PhD, 1971), he served as a member of the MIT faculty for more than twenty years. A planetary scientist, seismologist, and marine geophysicist, Dr. Solomon has worked on a wide range of problems in earthquake seismology, geodynamics, magmatism, and the geological and geophysical evolution of the terrestrial planets. He was a co-investigator on the Magellan mission to Venus and on Mars Global Surveyor, and he is currently a co-investigator on the Gravity Recovery and Interior Laboratory. Since 1999 he has been the principal investigator for the MESSENGER mission now en route to orbit Mercury. Dr. Solomon is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and a past president of the American Geophysical Union. He received the Arthur L. Day Prize from the National Academy of Sciences, the G. K. Gilbert Award from the Geological Society of America, the Harry H. Hess Medal from the American Geophysical Union, the NASA Public Service Medal, the Distinguished Alumni Award from Caltech, and (on behalf of the MESSENGER team) the Nelson P. Jackson Aerospace Award from the National Space Club.
    • Peter D. Bedini is the project manager of NASA’s Mercury Surface, Space Environment, Geochemistry, and Ranging (MESSENGER) mission, which launched in August 2004 and will enter orbit around Mercury in March 2011. He became project manager in September 2007 after serving briefly as the deputy project manager. Prior to his involvement with MESSENGER, he was the project manager of the Compact Reconnaissance Imaging Spectrometer for Mars instrument on the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. He also acted as deputy project manager for integration and test of the New Horizons mission to Pluto. Mr. Bedini has been at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory since November 2000. Before coming to the lab he spent nearly twenty years mostly at the University of Marylandbuilding time-of-flight mass spectrometers for a variety of NASA and European Space Agency missions.

Eric Finnegan is currently a member of the principal professional staff at The Johns Hopkins University Applied Physical Laboratory. He joined the lab in 2004 and is presently the mission systems engineer responsible for all technical aspects of the NASA Mercury Surface, Space Environment, Geochemistry, and Ranging mission to Mercury and the assistant supervisor responsible for National Security Space Program for the Space Department’s Space Systems Applications Group. He has previously served as the lead systems engineer overseeing the Integrated Systems Engineering Team in the development of spacecraft bus standards in support of the Office of Force Transportation’s multiphase Operational Responsive Space Program. Prior to joining the lab, Mr. Finnegan worked as a civil servant at Goddard Space Flight Center and was the mission systems engineer and project technologist for the Space Technology 5 project, part of the New Millennium Program. Previous employment experience included lead engineer for the guidance, navigation, and control and image navigation and registration subsystems in support of the Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites program. He has an MS in electrical engineering from the University of Pennsylvania and a BS, with honors, in aerospace engineering from the State University of New York at Buffalo.

Abstract

  • The Mercury Surface, Space Environment, Geochemistry, and Ranging (MESSENGER) mission was selected as the seventh mission of NASA’s Discovery Program in July 1999. Phase B began January 1, 2000, and Phase C/D began eighteen months later. MESSENGER launched on August 3, 2004, and to date has executed six planetary gravity assists and five major propulsive-trajectory changes. The time between MESSENGER’s selection and launch spanned an interval during which there were several notable spacecraft failures, and NASA’s attitude toward risk altered markedly. During MESSENGER’s Phase C/D alone, NASA’s management structure for the Discovery Program was reorganized four times, with each transition punctuated by abrupt changes in management expectations and areas of concern. Some of the “lessons learned” during the development phases of MESSENGER (e.g., regarding oversight and reviews) are peculiar to its era, but some (e.g., regarding personnel, procurement, and resource allocation) are of more general applicability. In contrast, the management of the Discovery Program during MESSENGER’s Phase E has been stable, well informed, and helpful to the accomplishment of mission goals and objectives. Evidently NASA, as well as NASA flight projects, can learn its lessons.
Lessons Learned from Prior Missions

Panel Chair and Speakers

  • Bradley (Brad) L. Jolliff, Panel Chair, is a research professor at Washington University in St. Louis. His research focus is on the materials that make up the surface and interior of planetary objects, how they are distributed on and within the planet, and what they tell about the planet’s history. At Washington University, he is responsible for the electron microprobe and X-ray diffraction laboratories. He trains and advises undergraduate and graduate students in geologic materials analysis and individual research projects. Dr. Jolliff is a member of the Mars Exploration Rovers science operations working group and the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter camera science team. He is the principal investigator for the MoonRise New Frontiers mission proposal, now in Phase A. He was a member of the Inner Planets Panel, National Academy of Sciences Decadal Survey for Solar System Exploration, 20012002. Dr. Jolliff serves on the Curation and Analysis Planning Team for Extraterrestrial Materials (CAPTEM), has chaired the lunar sample allocation subcommittee, and led the CAPTEM lunar science initiative, “New Views of the Moon.” He served on the Lunar and Planetary Institute Science Council for USRA and on the NASA Advisory Council, Science Committee. He graduated from Furman University in 1977 and the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology in 1987 after serving in the U.S. Army on active duty from 1977 to 1982.
  • James M. Russell III’s research has focused on atmospheric science, remote sensing, and satellite data analysis to study properties and processes in Earth’s atmosphere. He began his career in electrical engineering at the Langley Research Center, developing instrumentation and performing ground and rocket reentry tests of heat shield material used on the Gemini and Apollo capsules. He also worked on instrumentation for characterizing the Martian atmosphere during entry. Dr. Russell has served as coprincipal investigator (PI) on the Nimbus 7 Limb Infrared Monitor of the Stratosphere experiment and PI for the Halogen Occultation Experiment on the Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite (UARS). He currently serves as PI for the Sounding of the Atmosphere using Broadband Emission Radiometry experiment on the Thermosphere Ionosphere Mesosphere Energetics and Dynamics satellite and PI on the Aeronomy of Ice in the Mesosphere mission. He also served as co-investigator on the Jet Propulsion Laboratory Atmospheric Trace Molecule Spectroscopy experiment launched on the Space Shuttle and the Oxford University Improved Stratospheric and Mesospheric Sounder experiment launched on UARS. Dr. Russell served as head of the Chemistry and Dynamics Branch and the Theoretical Studies Branch in the Langley Atmospheric Sciences Division and currently is a professor of atmospheric and planetary sciences and co-director of the Center for Atmospheric Sciences at Hampton University in Virginia. He received a BSEE degree from Virginia Tech, an MSEE degree from the University of Virginia, and a PhD in aeronomy from the University of Michigan. He is author or co-author of more than 400 papers in scientific literature, including first authorship of the most cited paper in all geosciences during the period 19912001. He has received the NASA Exceptional Scientific Achievement Medal; the NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal; the Virginia 2008 Outstanding Scientist Award; and the University of Michigan, College of Engineering, Alumni Merit Award.
  • Andrew Cheng is the chief scientist for the Space Department at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory. He now serves as the department’s external liaison for space science and provides independent science advice and strategic vision to APL and department leadership. Dr. Cheng brings considerable experience to the position, having been an interdisciplinary scientist on the Galileo mission to Jupiter, a co-investigator on the Cassini mission to Saturn, and a scientist on the Japanese-led MUSES-C asteroid mission. He was project scientist for the historic Near Earth Asteroid Rendezvous mission, which was the first to orbit (and eventually land on) an asteroid. He is a member of the Mercury Surface, Space Environment, Geochemistry, and Ranging mission team and principal investigator for the Long Range Reconnaissance Imager instrument on the New Horizons mission to Pluto and the Kuiper Belt. He completed a one-year assignment at NASA Headquarters, serving as deputy chief scientist for Space Science in NASA’s Science Mission Directorate. Dr. Cheng was named Maryland Academy of Sciences Outstanding Young Scientist in 1985 and has received five NASA Group Achievement awards since then. He is a Fellow of the American Physical Society and has written more than 160 scientific articles. He holds a bachelor’s degree in physics from Princeton University and a master’s and doctorate in physics from Columbia University.
  • Noel W. Hinners consults for NASA, the aerospace industry, and 4-D Systems, which supports the NASA Academy of Program/Project and Engineering Leadership. He retired in January 2002 from Lockheed Martin Astronautics, Denver, where he was vice president of flight systems with primary responsibility for their NASA missions. He joined Martin Marietta Corporate as vice president of strategic planning in 1989. Dr. Hinners served as NASA associate deputy administrator and chief scientist, director of Goddard Space Flight Center, director of the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum, NASA’s associate administrator for Space Science, and director of Lunar Programs. Before entering government service, he was department head of Lunar Exploration with Bellcomm, Inc., which he joined as a member of the technical staff in 1963. At Bellcomm, he was responsible for Apollo lunar science formulation and Apollo site selection support to NASA. Dr. Hinners was the founding editor of Geophysical Research Letters, a rapid-publication journal of the American Geophysical Union, and founding president of the Maryland and Colorado Space Business Roundtables. He has been on and chaired oodles of space-related committees and has published on NASA programs. He currently serves on the executive committee of NASA’s Mars Exploration Program Analysis Group, the Science Committee of the NASA Advisory Committee, and the External Advisory Board of the University of Colorado Aerospace Engineering Sciences Department. He is the executive secretary of the NASA Chief Engineer’s Management Operations Working Group.
  • Steve Jolly is with Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company (LMSSC) in the sensors and space exploration systems line of business. He has twenty-eight years of experience in spacecraft and launch vehicles from concept through flight operations. He is currently chief systems engineer for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration/NASA Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite R satellite development program and also program manager for the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO), which is in science operations at Mars having returned 100 Tbits of science data. Dr. Jolly was chief systems engineer and deputy program manager for MRO during development. Coming off the Mars ’98 failures, he served as risk manager for the successful Mars Odyssey, which, having completed its primary mission, is in an extended mission phase. He was an assistant research professor of aerospace engineering sciences at the University of Colorado prior to joining LMSSC. He was also a faculty member of the NASA Center for Space Construction and a NASA summer faculty fellow of Marshall Space Flight Center. Dr. Jolly has recently been on the graduate faculty of engineering at Colorado University (CU)Denver, having completed development of a systems engineering curriculum. He has a BS in aerospace engineering from CU-Boulder, an MS from Florida Institute of Technology, and a PhD in aerospace engineering sciences from CU-Boulder.

Abstracts

  • The development of a science mission spacecraft comes with many challenges even when everything develops as expected. Virtually always, however, the expected does not occur. Instrument sensitivities do not materialize as expected; pointing systems underperform; interactions among payload, spacecraft, and the launch vehicle create vibrational loads that threaten the integrity of the observatory; and looming cost overruns require compromises to be made in the hardware and science return. In order to develop and implement a robust mission, the unexpected must always be under consideration. Workaround approaches, design alternatives, team adjustments, and close attention to detail are essential in order to successfully implement a mission. Experiences and lessons learned from the Small Explorers AIM mission, Near Earth Asteroid Rendezvous (NEAR) mission, and the Mars ’98 missions were discussed, as well as the software challenges associated with these missions.NEAR was designed to answer many fundamental questions about the nature and origin of asteroids and comets. It was the first of NASA’s Discovery missions and the first mission ever to go into orbit around an asteroid. The ultimate goal of the mission was to rendezvous with and achieve orbit around the near-Earth asteroid 433 Eros in January 1999 and study the asteroid for approximately one year. A problem caused an abort of the first encounter burn and the mission had to be adjusted for a December 1998 flyby of Eros and a later encounter and orbit on February 14, 2000. The NEAR mission is remembered as the first to orbit and land on an asteroid successfully, but those of us who lived NEAR (we did not just work on NEAR) remember it as both the best of times and the worst of times.NEAR is not alone in experiencing the worst times. The failures of the Mars ’98 missions are so well known that they have essentially become urban legends. And many today proclaim that not only is it impossible to achieve all three dimensions of the faster-better-cheaper (FBC) mantra of the 1990s, but, in fact, FBC died spectacularly and permanently with the loss of those missions. But what really happened to those missions? What is the legacy for today’s projects that came from those disasters? Or was a “stake” put in the heart of the beast, and have we done a total about-face, returning to the formulae of the 1960s and 1970s? After nearly ten years to reflect on changes that have been made in project management, systems engineering, and verification and validation, what is the prognosis? How is the exponential advance in flight and ground technologies affecting the practice of these principles?

    One of those advances has been the exponentially increased use of software in missions. There is not a major space system that has not experienced serious software development challenges, but what is at the root cause? Are flight-software development processes inadequate? Are spacecraft more functionally complex than in the past, resulting in these challenges? Why can’t the software subsystem meet cost and schedule? Is systems engineering broken? These questions were addressed head-on, and the shocking truth of what modern space exploration, and more specifically spacecraft development, has become was explored. A revolution has taken place and is accelerating. Ignore it and an enormous price will be paid. And the implications on safety and mission success are staggering indeed.

Presentations

Working Within NASA Policy and Directives for Program Management

Speaker

  • As the Science Mission Directorate chief engineer at NASA Headquarters since 2006, Kenneth W. Ledbetter serves as the Headquarters technical authority for flight program activities for NASA’s robotic science spacecraft, including planetary exploration, astrophysics, Earth science, and heliophysics missions across the spectrum of formulation, development, and mission operations. Prior to this assignment, he served for more than six years as the director of flight programs for the Office of Space Science at Headquarters. Mr. Ledbetter has more than forty years of experience in spacecraft mission design, flight operations, and program management, working in the aerospace industry and in government service with NASA, including direct project involvement in the Viking mission to Mars, the Magellan Venus Radar Mapper, and the Hubble Space Telescope. In 1999 he was awarded the NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal for overseeing spacecraft development for a record ten space science launches in only nine months. He received the NASA Medal of Outstanding Leadership for managing the Hubble Space Telescope program for the December 1993 first servicing-mission repair. In 1992, he received the NASA Public Service Medal for managing the spacecraft operations team for the highly successful Magellan radar-mapping mission to Venus. He has written papers on spacecraft mission design and/or operations and co-authored a textbook on spacecraft flight operations. He is a 1969 graduate of the University of Colorado, earning a Master of Science degree in aerospace engineering sciences.

Abstract

  • This presentation identified for project managers and principal investigators key NASA requirements for flight projects, provided guidance about how to work within NASA policies and directives, as an aid to successful project formulation. The focus was on PI-led science projects initiated by Announcements of Opportunity (AO) and the following objectives:
    • Identifying key NASA documents you need to know for project formulation;
    • Understanding the NASA governance model and how it is applied, including the roles of NASA Headquarters and the field centers, as well as definition of the chain of authority;
    • Identifying the key parts of NASA Procedural Requirement (NPR) 7120.5D for managing AO-type projects; this is
      the key agency-level document for implementing a project as it defines project life cycles, gate reviews, and principal products;
    • Identifying project-significant items from other key NASA Policy Directives and NPRs, including a suggested list of
      those that are most important for project success; and,
    • Gaining an understanding of the NASA project life cycle and how the Science Mission Directorate interprets and expands it via its Management Handbook.

    Presentation

New Frontiers Program Office: Overview, Guidance, and Expectations

Speaker

  • Dennon J. Clardy is the program manager for the Discovery, New Frontiers, and Lunar Quest Programs managed by Marshall Space Flight Center for the Planetary Science Division of the Science Mission Directorate. He has served NASA for twenty-one years in a number of systems engineering, project management, and program management positions. These include systems engineer on the first flight of the Tethered Satellite System, deployer chief engineer for the re-flight of the Tethered Satellite System, chief engineer for the USMP-4 (Spacelab) mission, chief engineer/project manager for the Vapor Compression Distillation Flight Experiment (Spacehab), deputy project manager in the Space Launch Initiative (SLI) Program, and deputy project manager in the Orbital Space Plane (OSP) Program. He served as a program mission manager (Genesis, Stardust, Dawn, and Juno) and deputy program manager for the Discovery and New Frontiers Program Office before becoming the program manager in January 2009. Mr. Clardy also served a detail assignment to NASA Headquarters as the associate director of the Planetary Science Division. He has received numerous awards, including the NASA Silver Snoopy and the NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal, and he has received Federal Acquisition Certification as a program manager.

Abstract

  • The primary responsibility of the New Frontiers Program Office is to ensure New Frontiers missions are successful in achieving their science objectives. The Program Office does this by working with the principal investigator and project team to manage the cost, schedule, and technical elements of the project and by guiding them through the various processes that make up the life cycle of these missions. This presentation provided an overview of the New Frontiers Program Office organization, functions, and approach to working with the PI, the project team, and the NASA Science Mission Directorate to ensure the success of New Frontiers missions. It provided guidance on working relationships and processes, as well as lessons learned by the program office from the management of multiple Discovery, New Frontiers, and Lunar Quest missions. Expectations of the PI on a PI-led mission were also addressed.

Presentation

Project Resource Controls and Earned Value Management

Speaker

  • Roy A. Maizel is the Science Mission Directorate’s deputy associate administrator for management, a position he has held since June 2008. In this capacity he is responsible for the oversight of SMD’s more than $4 billion annual budget, strategic planning, policy development, and the provision of administrative support to SMD’s 200-person NASA Headquarters workforce. He also serves as a management focal point for institutional issues at the two NASA field centers where science is the largest element of the business base: the Goddard Space Flight Center and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.Mr. Maizel holds a BA in political science and an MS in public policy analysis, both from the University of Rochester. He joined NASA in 1981 as a presidential management intern and acquired extensive experience as a program analyst on several projects within the Space Shuttle program. Since 1988 he has held a series of progressively responsible management positions in the Space Shuttle, International Space Station, Earth Science, and Space Science programs. When the Earth Science and Space Science programs merged in 2004 to become SMD, Mr. Maizel became director of the Business Management Division. Following a reorganization and consolidation of functions, he became director of the Management and Policy Division in 2006. Mr. Maizel is the recipient of numerous awards, including NASA’s Exceptional Service Medal in 2005.

Abstract

  • Successful project resources control on NASA projects is grounded not just in the application of specific cost monitoring and control techniques, but in a thorough understanding of both the external and internal environments in which NASA projects are approved, formulated, developed, and operated. NASA is a part of the discretionary component of the federal budget and operates in a very constrained budgetary environment. It is therefore imperative that projects be managed within their approved budgets.Recently NASA has been making use of two analytic tools to improve project resources control: joint confidence levels ( JCL) to validate the total project budget at key decision points and earned value management (EVM) to monitor project performance on a monthly basis. JCL uses probabilistic techniques to construct an “S curve” that shows the probability of achieving cost and schedule targets at various budget levels. Consistent with agency policy, the Science Mission Directorate budgets so that the agency can demonstrate a 70 percent confidence level on each project. EVM provides basic quantitative measures of cost and schedule performance, a useful “early-warning system” to show whether a project is likely to meet cost and schedule targets. Cost and schedule performance indices are reviewed on a monthly basis, such that timely action can be taken since negative trends that persist for several months are difficult to reverse.In addition to EVM, monthly (or more frequent) monitoring of workforce utilization, reserves on cost-to-go, liens against reserves, cost burn rate, and accomplishment of key milestones, followed by prompt management action, are all essential elements of cost and schedule control. Successful project resource control comprises a careful balance between implementing cost-control measures such as timely application of reserves, de-scopes, and changes in the test program while identifying and managing risks at an acceptable level.

Presentation

ITAR: Key International Mission Considerations (and the Law)

Speaker

  • Paula L. Geisz has served as NASA’s manager of International Technology Transfer Policy and export-control administrator since January 2007. She is responsible for ensuring NASA compliance with all U.S. export-control laws and regulations; issuing NASA policy guidance; assisting the center export administrators with implementation issues; managing NASA export-licensing and reporting efforts; reviewing foreign national visitors to NASA facilities; representing NASA at various U.S. government interagency forums; coordinating NASA responses to the Departments of State, Commerce, and Defense on export issues; and assisting NASA programs and projects with the use of export-license exemptions and exceptions and import permits. Ms. Geisz was assigned to the NASA export-control effort in 1994 and assisted the first NASA export administrator and export counsel in the creation of the NASA Export Control Program in 1995. From 2003 until 2007, she served as director of the Resources Management Division in the Office of External Relations and as part of the senior management team that was responsible for financial management, human resources, procurement, and a wide variety of tasks that included NASA presence at five overseas locations.

Abstract

  • Ensuring NASA compliance with U.S. export control laws and regulations while accomplishing NASA missions is challenging. Understanding the requirements under international cooperative agreements and the transfers required under those agreements is key for a successful export compliance effort. NASA wants to maximize the benefits of its international efforts while ensuring compliance with U.S. export control laws and regulations.

Presentation

PI-Mission Studies and Assessments Summaries

Speaker

  • R. Brad Perry is the director of the Science Office for Mission Assessments (SOMA) within the Science Mission Directorate (SMD) at NASA Headquarters. Physically located at Langley Research Center, SOMA assists SMD in preparing and implementing Announcements of Opportunity to solicit new Earth and space science missions and instruments. The SOMA leads the technical, management, and cost evaluation of proposals and concept study reports, and additionally accomplishes independent studies and assessments for SMD. Mr. Perry previously served as the acquisition manager for New Frontiers, Discovery, Explorer, the near infrared camera for the James Webb Space Telescope, and the Pluto-Kuiper Belt Mission. Prior to joining Langley, he worked at NASA Headquarters and at Johnson Space Center, and he also served as an U.S. Air Force pilot. Mr. Perry is an aerospace engineering graduate of the Georgia Institute of Technology and has accomplished graduate studies in astronomy at the University of Virginia. He has published more than 30 peer-reviewed astronomy journal papers and professional presentations on subjects ranging from novae and supernovae to solar system objects. He is a recipient of the NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal, the NASA Exceptional Service Medal, and five NASA Group Achievement Awards. Mr. Perry is an Associate Fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics and a member of the American Astronautical Society, the American Astronomical Society, and the American Geophysical Society.

Abstract

  • To encourage the submission of the highest-quality mission proposals and concept study reports, the NASA Science Office for Mission Assessments maintains an ongoing effort to identify and analyze common areas of major weakness resulting from the technical, management, and cost review process. The results of this effort were described, including appropriate lessons learned that can provide valuable guidance to future mission proposal and concept study teams. Additionally, the cost and schedule performance of a set of Science Mission Directorate missions were discussed to provide further insight into the challenges that can arise for missions in the detailed development and implementation phases.

Presentations

Capturing Knowledge Exercise

Abstract

  • Table discussions, reflections, and knowledge capture exercise/shared experiences. Participants were asked to respond to the questions: “What were the lessons learned today?” and “Share the most important thing you’ve heard today that you didn’t hear before.”

Flip Charts