Systems Engineering Seminar

Six Decades of Guidance and Control Systems Experience

Presented by: Henry Hoffman, NESC GN&C Technical Discipline Team, Swales Aerospace

December 5, 2006, 1:00 p.m.
Building 3 Auditorium

Six Decades of Guidance and Control Systems Experience

Mr. Hoffman will discuss key guidance and control systems design and development issues, on-orbit satellite anomaly troubleshooting, and on-orbit satellite system recovery techniques and processes. He will illustrate his discussion with examples from his own experiences from the 1940s through the 1990s. This talk is part of an NASA Engineering and Safety Center (NESC) GN&C Knowledge Capture activity that grew out of the recent NESC Academy course on Satellite Attitude Control Systems.



Henry Hoffman has more than six decades of guidance and control systems experience. He began his career in the early 1940's as an Electrical Technician for the US Navy where he supported Navy missile and airborne electronics development. He joined Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) in 1962 as the Head of the Guidance and Control Branch. He remained Branch Head until 1993, providing technical support including feasibility studies, analysis and research for development of attitude stabilization and maneuvering control techniques for Goddard flight projects and the design of the satellite control systems for all in-house projects such as the Cosmic Background Explorer (CoBE).

From 1993 to 1996 he served as Chief Engineer and Staff Consultant for Systems Engineering and Guidance and Control. Since 1996 he has been providing guidance and control systems services through Swales Aerospace and as an independent consultant. Over the years he has served in design review and/or consultant capacity on many NASA, military, foreign, and university space programs. He is a member of the NESC GN&C Technical Discipline Team.

Mr. Hoffman is a member of AIAA, a senior member of IEEE, and a GSFC Fellow. Over the years he has received numerous awards, commendations and certificates. Some of the most notable are the NASA Exceptional Service Medal, the Navy Civilian Service Medal, the Skylab Achievement Award, the ESA GEOS Certificate, and a Federal Aviation Administration commendation from the Director of Supersonic Transport Development.

Mr. Hoffman received his MS in Electrical Engineering from the University of Maryland in 1952, and his BE in Electrical Engineering from the Johns Hopkins University in 1949.


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