Volume 19 Issue 4
Avatar at Work


moon surface

BRACE FOR IMPACT Artificial intelligence paints a portrait of the moon
that's even more pockmarked than previously thought.       - NASA


From the Editor-in-Chief

Dear Readers,

Modeling the Moon’s environment suggests relevancy for tackling hazard avoidance and safe rover navigation. Although several navigation algorithms already exist, non-verification limits their use. ARTEMIS Mission specifies autonomy for rovers, robots, and other crew-tended capabilities. Reliance on the onboard systems interfaced to a crew control panel indicates awareness of safety issues existing in the design that could cause a catastrophic event. Sound engineering design, qualification and acceptance testing for hardware reliability, and validation testing providing confidence in the software behavior, will ensure trust in the crew controls. However, a fundamental gap between the requirements on software, as specified by systems engineers, and the implementation of those requirements by software engineers, sometimes leads to serious flaws. Now, with the constantly evolving tool, AI (artificial intelligence) visualizing the moon appeared even more pockmarked than previously thought. M. Temming (Space News, Narch 2023) reported a new algorithm (or, artificial neural network) for training on Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter images that covered about one-third of the moon’s surface, but post-training (AI) identified 92 percent of known craters in that region and found about 6,000 new ones. How that revelation impacts planned ARTEMIS missions in the future suggests updating risk-benefit analysis. Mitigating the uncertainty of AI and providing guardrails against emergent events indicated a need for sharing by designers, requirement setters and systems engineers from the start of system design. My personal interest included participation with 2023 AI4SE/SE4AI Workshop themed, “Balancing Opportunity and Risk:The Systems Engineer’s Role in the Rapid Advancement of AI-Based Systems”. The two-part workshop held on September 27-28 (in-person) at the George Washington University in Washington, DC exploring the relationship between artificial intelligence (AI) and systems engineering (SE). and next week’s virtual October 11-12 workshop includes presenting the paper “Developing Artificial Intelligence in Lunar Operations”.

Artificial intelligence is making inroads in almost every sub-discipline of aerospace industry. The US Army DEVCOM Armaments Center (AC) Systems Engineering Directorate (SED) and the Systems Engineering Research Center (SERC), a University Affiliated Research Center (UARC) for the Department of Defense (DoD), jointly sponsor annual Artificial Intelligence for Systems Engineering & Systems Engineering for Artificial Intelligence (AI4SE & SE4AI) workshops. Many other aerospace interests are doing the same. Additionally, my active participation in the community included presenting papers at this year’s Lunar Exploration and Analysis Group (LEAG) Annual Meeting (September 15-18) of Lunar and Planetary Institute/ Universities Space Research Association, National Society of Black Engineers’ Aerospace Systems Conference (September 10-13), and Chesapeake Section of American Association of Physics Teachers (October 21). Presentations are posted herein.

Ronald H. Freeman, PhD
October 1, 2023

Journal of Space Operations & Communicator, a quarterly online publication, serves as a forum for those involved in the space operations field to communicate with one another, share ideas and information that improve the way operations are carried out in space. The Journal is a crossdisciplinary scholarly publication designed to advance space communication as a profession and as an academic discipline. The Journal is distributed electronically without charge to users on a global basis. JSOC contains peer-reviewed articles, comments and case notes written by leading scientists, professors, and practitioners in their respective fields of aerospace expertise. The editorial board seeks articles that demonstrate exemplary academic research of emerging trends in space technology and space operations fields.

Workshops & Seminars

2024 Workshop Preparation – “Cité de l’espace” Toulouse, France

CNES, the French Space Agency, will host the next SpaceOps workshop scheduled to take place June 25 - 27, 2024. This biannual event, which takes place in between the SpaceOps conferences, aims to explore new subjects, new paradigms, new issues related to space systems operations.To learn more about this event, contact the organizers:

SpaceOps Logo The venue and dates for the 2025 SpaceOps Conference will be published soon.

"Inspiring Humankind's Future"



The  "Journal" solicits papers and technical articles on all relevant matters of space operations for online publication. On request the "Journal's"  international Peer Review team will review your paper according to AIAA standards. Please contact: Joachim J. Kehr, Editor SpaceOps News joachimkehr@aol.com
or use the Communicator submission template
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