Over 70 professionals, nine trophies and two astronauts. The ESA ISS Awards ceremony exceeded all expectations in its fifth annual ceremony to recognise the dedication and expertise of colleagues who have contributed to Europe’s involvement in the International Space Station (ISS) programme.
The event acknowledged excellence in supporting operations during increments 37/38 and 39/40, as well as for the ATV-5 mission, the last for Europe’s space freighter. The ceremony took place on 7 May in ESTEC’s Erasmus Centre.
“With this fifth edition, we have achieved a remarkable figure that tell us about your continuous efforts, your successes and the good habit of awarding your work”, said the Director of Human Spaceflight and Operations, Thomas Reiter, during the presentation of the awards.
Frank De Winne, Head of the European Astronaut Centre, highlighted the importance of building confidence between crews and ground teams. The trophies - bronze cast astronauts’ gloves like those used for spacewalks - symbolise a handshake of trust.
There were 24 nominations in total from a wide variety of contributions. Mission managers Jessica Grenouilleau, Claudio Sollazzo and Massimo Cislaghi were also there to reward individuals and teams, from engineers to flight directors, both from ESA and from our European industrial partners.
“It is overwhelming the appreciation that comes from our colleagues for what we do”, said an elated Melanie Cowan, part of the Erasmus video production team that won one of the awards. “This trophy belongs to everybody, and especially to the astronauts who gave us wonderful images to produce our videos”, she added.
For Simon Challis, Columbus Flight Director, it was an honour to be rewarded after a very intense period of work for him and his team. “And yet our work is not over. We continue to improve the emergency responses to ammonia leaks together with our NASA colleagues”, he said.
The award ceremony was also a perfect ending for the ATV programme. “We were at our best for the fifth ATV. Our intensive preparations made this final mission a very smooth one”, said one of the ATV flight directors, Didier Collin.
The recognition gave his team mate Mauro Augelli “extra motivation to start working on new and exciting projects”.
Winners: Columbus MTL IFHX Close Call Investigation Team (Simon Challis, Zoltan Szigetvari, Fabio Burzagli, Alessandro Rovera, Alexander Getimis): A serious anomaly in one of the heat exchangers on Columbus almost led to the shutdown of the entire module. The team reacted quickly, and provided solutions to help re-establish the thermal control system very shortly after the close call.
EML ODF team (Sandra Schumann, Angelika Diefenbach, Jim Volp, Arjan Kramer): This team made the installation of the ElectroMagnetic Levitator and science runs an immense success. They produced high-quality and easy-to-use procedures praised by the partners, becoming a showcase for the entire ISS community.
Erasmus Centre Video Production team (Massimo Sabbatini, Melanie Cowan, Cees Dekker, Andrea Conigli): The team was recognised for their continuous efforts in capturing the audience’s imagination with the production of outstanding videos, real-time mission support and innovative video development.
Nominees: PASO team (Piera Mannini, Riccardo Accossato, Alessandro Nocera, Andrea Lazzari); SOLAR team (Stefano Masiello, Didier Moureau and the SOLAR science team); Nicole Vagt, Laura Zanardini and Jérôme Campan.
Winners: Antonio Ceriello: His capability to overcome technical and programmatic problems, to find solutions and to guide various teams helped FASTER achieve the best possible science outcome.
Bernhard Glaubitz: As Project Manager of the ElectroMagnetic Levitator, Bernhard has excelled in leadership and managerial skills, greatly contributing to the success of the project.
ODF and SODF team (Joachim Dopken, Andrea Brinkmann): Flight displays and procedures are key for the crew when operating the Station’s systems and payloads. Andrea did an outstanding job supporting the NASA Integrated Display and Graphics Standards, whereas Joachim was instrumental in the implementation of ESA’s Operations Data File Workflow System.
Nominees: EML installation and anomaly resolution team (Winfried Aicher, Angelika Diefenbach, Arndt-Philipp Menzel, Francesca Castagna); COL FCT team (Pierre Devautour, Francesc Betorz); Jesús Jiménez and ISS crew training for ATV-5 (Michael Markus, Lionel Ferra, Oleg Polovnikov, Laura Winterling, Liliana Ravagnolo).
Winners: ATV-CNES Flight Directors (Patrice Benarroche, Isabelle Escane, Didier Collin, Laurent Francillout, Pierre Chadoutaud, Mauro Augelli): The high reliability and dedication of the Flight Directors team facilitated the success of ATV programme. They professionally managed the teams at the ATV Control Centre, involving CNES teams and always in coordination with the international partners.
AIT Team (Markus Kluck, Patrick Schneider, Marcel Petke, Martin Menzel): This team excelled for their outstanding performance, team spirit and dedication to complete the assembly integration tests in time for the launch of ATV-5.
Pascal Martin: Pascal’s leadership and remarkable collaborative skills were critical for the resolution of complex issues during ATV integration and flight operations. System failures never took him aback.
Nominees: LIRIS team (Olivier Mongrard, Pierre Casiez, Bruno Cavrois, Alizee Vergnol); Shallow re-entry team (Emilio De Pasquale, Irene Huertas, Laurent Francillout, Sylvain Delattre); Finn Ankersen, ESTLs team (Christian Santini, Hans-Peter Leiseifer, Heinz Wartenberg, Remi Delage, Thierry Chaudot, Gildas Bellec); Hans-Peter Leiseifer; ATV EST Power team (Bruno Mauret, Francois Trinquard, Philippe Laget, Michel Zink, Thierry Chaudot).