Systems Engineering Seminar

Getting the Most from Simple Models

Presented by:
Conrad Schiff, Code 595

Tuesday, April 9, 2013,1:00 p.m.
Building 3 Auditorium


Getting the Most from Simple Models

Conrad Schiff has a BS, MS, and PhD in physics with a specialization in gravity, mechanics, and dynamical systems. He has been a member of the flight dynamics community here at GSFC for over 22 years – the first 16 as a contractor at Computer Sciences Corporation and a.i. solutions, and the last 6+ as a civil servant in the Mission Design and Navigation Branch Code 595. He has worked as the flight dynamics lead on ACE, WMAP, JWST, and MMS.



In today’s fast-paced world, enabled by countless networked machines, it is natural to rely on computers to answer our analysis needs. However, an overreliance on the computer is harmful to good systems engineering in a number of ways. Most notable is the fact that detailed computer modeling frequently obscures the broad picture need to make programmatic decisions while taking a long time to do so. In this seminar, I share some of the successes from the discipline of flight dynamics that were obtained by ‘taking a step back’ to find simpler, more general and less computer intensive solutions to designing a mission from a systems engineering point of view.



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