PS, nebenbei: hier beschreibt (Ex?)-Teammitglied Jack Crenshaw in kurzen, aber prägnanten Worten seine Tätigkeit als Sr. Advisor, Flight Dynamics PTScientists GmbHhttps://www.linkedin.com/in/jack-crenshaw
Jacksonville, Florida Area
PT Scientists began as Part-Time Scientists, a Berlin-based amateur team competing for the Google Lunar X-Prize (GLXP). During the years I worked with them, we developed a very mature Lunar Rover, and tested it in a wide range of rugged test sites from the Arizona Meteor Crater to the Kilimanjaro mountain. More recently, they have also developed a single-stage spacecraft/lander capable of soft-landing 200kg payloads on the lunar surface.
I was leader of the Astrodynamics Team, and during those years we performed all the trajectory analyses for various combinations of boosters, spacecraft, and mission constraints. I developed a proprietary strategy for achieving highly efficient Trans-Lunar Injection (TLI
) maneuvers using relatively low-thrust engines. The strategy involves performing multiple short perigee burns, with carefully tailored timing of the engine burn-coast transitions to achieve optimal performance.
I also simulated Lunar-Orbit Injection (LOI
), orbit circularizing, and landing maneuvers. Using a combination of MATLAB/Simulink and Mathcad analyses, we were able to provide extremely short turnaround when needed in response to changes in system booster/mass/thruster/orbit geometry.
Studying the lunar landing maneuver in detail, I developed near-optimal trajectory profiles combining the de-orbit retro burn, coast, deceleration, and final descent phases.
After GLXP was cancelled, Part-Time Scientists went commercial as PT Scientists, and are currently working with sponsors Audi and Vodafone on continuing lunar missions.