Latest Space News
Thu, 23 Nov 2017 00:00:00 +0100
The 11th annual Mobile Deployable Communications conference will take place in Warsaw, Poland on 1st and 2nd February 2018. Download Conference Agenda | Register to attend this Conference Flexible and continuous connectivity, anywhere, at any time remains a key priority for major defence forces around the world. With the critical threat of cyber warfare intensifying, there is now a pressing need to ensure secure communications can be effectively operated in contested environments. The...
Wed, 22 Nov 2017 19:00:00 +0100
Neutrinos are abundant subatomic particles that are famous for passing through anything and everything, only very rarely interacting with matter. About 100 trillion neutrinos pass through your body every second. Now, scientists have demonstrated that the Earth stops energetic neutrinos-they do not go through everything. These high-energy neutrino interactions were seen by the IceCube detector, an array of 5,160 basketball-sized optical sensors deeply encased within a cubic kilometer of very c...
Wed, 22 Nov 2017 15:09:00 +0100
ESA's first Earth observation satellite was launched on 23 November 1977. When the first Meteosat satellite took its place in the sky, it completed coverage of the whole globe from geostationary orbit and laid the foundations for European and world cooperation in meteorology that continues today. Weather - and particularly extreme weather - affects everything we do. Being able to see the whole disc of Earth allows forecasters to see developing weather systems, as well as working out wind spee...
Wed, 22 Nov 2017 00:00:00 +0100
The vault-like, 40-foot diameter, 40-ton door of Chamber A at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston was unsealed on November 18, signaling the end of cryogenic testing for NASA's James Webb Space Telescope. The historic chamber's massive door opening brings to a close about 100 days of testing for Webb, a significant milestone in the telescope's journey to the launch pad. The cryogenic vacuum test began when the chamber was sealed shut on July 10, 2017. Scientists and engineers at Johnson pu...
Tue, 21 Nov 2017 16:05:00 +0100
Europe's next four Galileo navigation satellites and the Ariane 5 rocket due to lift them into orbit are being readied for their 12 December launch from Europe's Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana. Tuesday saw Galileo satellites 19-22 declared ready for flight, along with their Ariane. Combined activities are now under way, culminating in the satellites meeting their rocket in the Final Assembly Building. The satellites were flown in pairs to French Guiana last month. Once safely unboxed i...
Tue, 21 Nov 2017 14:26:00 +0100
A mini-rover, tools once used on the Moon and lasers for 3D mapping are in the backpack of the explorers of tomorrow. The terrain will be hazardous and it will be dark in volcanic caves, but this equipment could one day help to scout other planets. The alien-like landscapes of Lanzarote, Spain, are almost surreal but this volcanic island is helping to bring future space missions to reality. This month, an expedition with a dozen of experiments mobilised 50 people and four space agencies du...
Tue, 21 Nov 2017 14:00:00 +0100
ViaSat Inc. (NASDAQ: VSAT), a global broadband services and technology company, announced today it has expanded its current relationship with authorized value-added reseller Satcom Direct (SD), to offer ViaSat's full suite of in-flight connectivity (IFC) systems and services to large and mid-cabin business jets. The new agreement adds ViaSat's latest Ka-band business jet service to SD's IFC portfolio, which already included ViaSat's global Ku-band IFC service. ViaSat's Ka-band service is expecte...
Tue, 21 Nov 2017 00:00:00 +0100
We are proud to announce the third annual Maritime Reconnaissance and Surveillance Technology conference will be held in Rome from the 30th-31st January 2018. Download Conference Agenda | Register to attend this Conference Reconnaissance and Surveillance are key to developing clear and accurate maritime situational awareness. In order to maximise their ISR range, Navies and Maritime agencies around the globe are looking beyond the atmosphere to provide new and advanced surveillance capabil...
Mon, 20 Nov 2017 20:47:00 +0100
The propulsion system of the light-weight Angara 1.2 Launch Vehicle Service Module, manufactured by the Khrunichev Space Center (part of ROSCOSMOS State Corporation), completed successful hot-fire testing at the Federal State Enterprise "Rocket & Space Industry Research & Test Center" (RSI RTC) test facility (Peresvet, Moscow Region). The hot-fire tests are the most important and final stage of ground based propulsion system tests prior to flight testing. During the tests, specialists from...
Mon, 20 Nov 2017 17:00:00 +0100
For the first time ever astronomers have studied an asteroid that has entered the Solar System from interstellar space. Observations from ESO's Very Large Telescope in Chile and other observatories around the world show that this unique object was traveling through space for millions of years before its chance encounter with our star system. It appears to be a dark, reddish, highly-elongated rocky or high-metal-content object. The new results appear in the journal Nature on 20 November 2017. ...
Mon, 20 Nov 2017 16:30:00 +0100
Harris Corporation (NYSE:HRS) has partnered with NASA's Johnson Space Center to successfully complete thermal vacuum testing for the James Webb Space Telescope - validating its ability to operate in the frigid space environment. The Webb telescope will be the premier space observatory of the next decade, and will study galaxy, star and planet formation in the universe. Harris' team helped safeguard the telescope in Houston during Hurricane Harvey and ensured uninterrupted testing - including ...
Mon, 20 Nov 2017 14:31:00 +0100
Orbital ATK (NYSE:OA), a global leader in aerospace and defense technologies, contributed to the successful launch of a United Launch Alliance Delta II rocket as it lifted off Saturday from Vandenberg Air Force Base, California, carrying the first Joint Polar Satellite System (JPSS-1) spacecraft. Orbital ATK's contributions to the Delta II include nine Graphite Epoxy Motors (GEM 40) and a large composite fairing for the rocket. This event marks the penultimate launch of the Delta II rocket. It i...
Mon, 20 Nov 2017 00:00:00 +0100
Twice as big as Earth, the super-Earth 55 Cancri e was thought to have lava flows on its surface. The planet is so close to its star, the same side of the planet always faces the star, such that the planet has permanent day and night sides. Based on a 2016 study using data from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope, scientists speculated that lava would flow freely in lakes on the starlit side and become hardened on the face of perpetual darkness. The lava on the dayside would reflect radiation from th...
Sat, 18 Nov 2017 13:03:00 +0100
Today, NASA launched NOAA's next-generation polar satellite, the Joint Polar Satellite System-1, into space. Two Raytheon (NYSE: RTN) weather programs are mission-critical components of the satellite's mission: the JPSS Common Ground System and the Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite sensor. Svalbard, Norway, is home to part of a global network of receiving stations that process and distribute polar satellite data to users worldwide. Photo taken at Kongsberg Satellite Services plateau, ...
Sat, 18 Nov 2017 08:00:00 +0100
A United Launch Alliance (ULA) Delta II rocket carrying the Joint Polar Satellite System-1 (JPSS-1) for NASA and National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) lifted off from Space Launch Complex-2 on Nov. 18 at 1:47 a.m. PST. The JPSS program provides the nation's next generation polar-orbiting operational environmental satellite system, delivering key observations for the nation's essential projects and services, including forecasting weather in advance and assessing environmental hazards...
Fri, 17 Nov 2017 00:00:00 +0100
Landing on Mars is difficult and not always successful. Well-designed advance testing helps. An ambitious NASA Mars rover mission set to launch in 2020 will rely on a special parachute to slow the spacecraft down as it enters the Martian atmosphere at over 12,000 mph (5.4 kilometers per second). Preparations for this mission have provided, for the first time, dramatic video of the parachute opening at supersonic speed. The Mars 2020 mission will seek signs of ancient Martian life by investiga...
Thu, 16 Nov 2017 15:07:00 +0100
The U.S. Navy's Communications Satellite Program Office, PMW 146, and Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) handed over full operational control of the fifth Mobile User Objective System (MUOS) satellite to the Naval Satellite Operations Center (NAVSOC). The October 11 milestone followed the successful completion of the MUOS-5 satellite's on-orbit testing and delivery of all operational products needed to "fly" the satellite. In April, the Navy, working with Army Forces Strategic Command (ARSTRAT), con...
Thu, 16 Nov 2017 14:04:00 +0100
As part of ESA's strategy to foster commercial competitiveness in Europe while focusing on its core aims, the agency has transferred ownership of several ground tracking stations for reuse by external organisations. By the end of 2017, ESA will have transferred three stations to national organisations in Spain and Portugal, who will take over the provision of satellite tracking services to a wide variety of commercial customers. The three stations involved in the transfer are all equipped ...
Wed, 15 Nov 2017 19:33:00 +0100
Boeing [NYSE:BA] won large commitments across its twin- and single-aisle commercial airplane families, debuted key capabilities including the CST-100 Starliner docking and KC-46 refueling simulators, and announced services agreements at the 2017 Dubai Airshow. "This has been a very successful show for Boeing. Our regional customers have maintained their trust in our products and technology, and our partnerships in the Middle East region continue to grow," said Bernard Dunn, President, Boeing ...
Wed, 15 Nov 2017 12:00:00 +0100
A temperate Earth-sized planet has been discovered only 11 light-years from the Solar System by a team using ESO's unique planet-hunting HARPS instrument. The new world has the designation Ross 128 b and is now the second-closest temperate planet to be detected after Proxima b. It is also the closest planet to be discovered orbiting an inactive red dwarf star, which may increase the likelihood that this planet could potentially sustain life. Ross 128 b will be a prime target for ESO's Extremely ...
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  • CV: Sr System Software Engineer

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    Personal information
     Name:<withheld>
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    Contact information
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    Candidate Profile
     Date Submitted:13-02-2013
     Last Modified:13-02-2013 (09:07)
    Job information
     Current job:Sr System Software Engineer
     Employment Term:Permanent
     Job location:Europe only
     Date available:within a month
     Industry:Civil Agencies/International Organizations, Satellite Operators, ,
     KeywordsDistributed Computing, HPC, High-Throughput Computing, Large Databases, Web Development
    CV

    Professional Experience

    Expert in Distributed Computing, HPC, High-Throughput Computing and Large Databases with more than thirteen years of experience, largely in international organizations. Perfectly at ease with all phases of software life-cycle from requirement engineering to design, implementation, testing, release engineering, quality assurance, support and operations for science applications both ground and space-based. 

        Adept at managing complexity and working independently in the presence of incomplete and/or evolving requirements, under tight deadlines. Extremely effective at working in a team, also with lead responsibilities. 

        Significant experience with data modeling, simulations, end-user tools, middleware and web development. Significant research, publication and presentation experience both in astronomy and information technology. Strong analytical presentation and interpersonal skills. Able to integrate into scientific, international and/or business work environments.

     

     

    Computer Experience

    Languages: Python, C/Objective-C, Perl, SQL, HTML, XML, Fortran, JavaScript, UML (have also used professionally: Java, C++).

    CASE Tools: Enterprise Architect, Visual Paradigm

    Version Control: Git, Subversion, CVS

    Platforms: UNIX (Mac OS X, Linux, Solaris), Windows

     

     

    Relevant Employment History

    2010-present: Senior System Software Engineer, Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) - Baltimore, MD USA (On-site & Telework)

    Working on both the NASA Hubble Space Telescope (HST) and the NASA James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) ground segments. Main responsibility is the workflow management system for both HST and JWST.

    • Leading the design and development of the Condor-based workflow management system for both HST and JWST called OWL (now used by both STScI and the Canadian Astronomy Data Center). OWL is a Python layer on top of Condor providing advanced features such as support for dynamic job submission files (using a template engine), blackboard architecture (to store the instantaneous and historical state of the system), data-centric view (to easily discover problematic datasets) and web-based GUIs. OWL has a plugin architecture able to support different batch job scheduling systems.
    • Handling the full OWL software release cycle for HST, JWST and the Hubble Legacy Archive development and integration & testing, supporting science pipeline developers, testers and eventually operators.
    • Part of the team that is designing the architecture of the JWST engineering and science data processing subsystem, testing that same architecture on HST data management. Responsible for the workflow manager and the data processing queue requirement engineering.
    • Part of the team developing science pipelines for JWST. Designed the Python-based JWST science pipeline description language and execution framework (called STPipe), which allows pipelines to be easily built from modular components. STPipe provides both Python classes and command-line utilities for executing both pipelines and pipeline steps, assembling and customizing pipelines, handling pipeline and step configuration and logging.
    • Playing an active role in system engineering working groups, periodic code reviews, data challenges and software demos with NASA headquarters and external reviewers.
    • Fostering collaboration with the Canadian Astronomy Data Center (CADC), interested in using OWL for their HST science data reprocessing. Working on integrating OWL with the CANFAR GRID CloudScheduler.
    • Gaining an in-depth knowledge of Condor and disseminating this knowledge to the rest of the Institute, including giving training courses to both science and IT staff.

    2006-2009: Senior Software Engineer, National Optical Astronomy Observatories (NOAO) and LSST Corporation - Tucson, AZ USA

    Worked for the LSST project and collaborated with Pan-STARRS on the design and development of the world's first integrated asteroid and comet detection and tracking system, called MOPS. In this context I have had lead responsibility for:

    • Transitioning the entire code base (hundreds of thousand of lines of code written in C, Perl, Makefiles, shell scripts and Fortran) to the LSST code baseline.
    • Transitioning from Perl, Makefiles and shell scripts to Python and wrapping C and Fortran code in Python. Porting the entire 32-bit code base to 64-bit. Transitioning from ad-hoc parallelism to a system that supported MPI as well as batch job schedulers like Condor and Moab/Torque/OpenPBS.
    • Performing critical scalability studies, proposing and implementing architecture improvements.
    • Developing a VOEvent-based alert system (client and server using a XMPP publish-subscribe architecture) for MOPS with dynamic discovery of alert rules and dynamic routing of alerts.
    • Mentoring other LSST developers on MOPS

    In addition, gave significant contributions to the design of the LSST database schema as well as its high performance, MPI-based pipeline execution framework.

     

    2003-2005: Senior Scientific Programmer, National Optical Astronomy Observatories (NOAO) - Tucson, AZ USA

    • Designed and developed a flexible and high-performance execution framework for distributed pipelines (NHPPS) which is being used in operations in at least three different observatories (CTIO, NOAO North, STScI). 
    • Worked in a team to develop both the middleware and the science modules for distributed, data-parallel science imaging pipelines. 
    • Led the design and implementation of an survey telescope scheduling simulator, OpSim, for the LSST project which proved to be an extremely valuable tool in evaluating the science impact of design choices in both telescope and dome system as well as observing strategy. 

    OpSim is able to simulate all telescope operations during a user defined period of time (typically 10 years) using historical weather data and the full mechanical and electronic specifications of hardware and detectors. It is being used for both the LSST and Pan-STARRS projects.

     

    2000-2003: Data Archive and Pipeline Software Specialist, European Southern Observatory (ESO), Space Telescope European Coordinating Facility division (ST-ECF). Garching b. Muenchen, Germany

    • Designed and developed advanced, science driven, data mining and data analysis software for astronomy archival research.
    • Integrated that software into the existing ESO and Hubble Space Telescope (HST) archives and request handling systems. 
    • Handled all phases of archival research proposal life cycle for the ASTROVIRTEL project (including feasibility studies, requirement engineering, software development, user support, publication tracking).
    • Co-authored the SciSoft collection of scientific software for Mac OS X.

     

    1999-2000: Web developer, VIRMOS Consortium, Osservatorio Astronomico di Brera - Milano and Merate, Italy.

    Developed web interfaces, in Java, to existing sophisticated data analysis pipelines. Co-authored the specifications of the programming guidelines for software development within the VIRMOS Consortium.

     

    1998-2000: Database developer, Proper S.a.s. - Novara, Italy

    Developed database-driven solutions for several business companies. Acquired good knowledge of consumer-grade DB system like FileMaker Pro and Microsoft Access. Offered technical support to business customers.

     

     

    Other Projects

    Co-PI on a proposal to apply astronomical star-finding algorithms to images acquired with confocal microscopes. The main idea is twofold: on one hand count cells automatically using that code, on the other hand, validate these results with the help of volunteers over the Internet (citizen science).

     

     

    Professional Training

    2012: Condor tutorials, Condor Week, University of Wisconsin

    2011: GPU Programming tutorials, ADASS Conference

    2007: Use Case Development, In-house training

    2004: Use Case Driven Object Modeling with UML, ICONIX

    2003: Use Case Driven Object Modeling with UML, ICONIX

    2002: XML: A Comprehensive Hands-On Introduction, Learning Tree International

     

     

    Teaching and Presentation Experience

    2012: Taught two Condor classes and two advanced Python classes at Space Telescope Science Institute

    2010: Gave a Python class to software engineers at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics

    2000-Present: three to five presentations per year at conferences (SPIE, ADASS, PyCon) as well as in-house.

     

     

    Conference Organizing Experience

    2012: Third annual Workshop on Science Workflow Systems, Tucson, AZ

    2011: Second annual Workshop on Science Workflow Systems, Baltimore, MD

     

     

    Education

    1998: Master's Degree in Physics (110/110), University of Milan, Italy.

    Thesis title: "Multi-color Photometry of Galaxies With Signs of Interaction".

    Foreign Languages: Italian (mother tongue), English (fluent).

     

     

    Publication List

    Available upon request (approximately 40 publications)

     

     

    References

    Available upon request.


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