Posted 2 November 2022 in Concurrent Design, Engineering, News, Space.
  • RHEA Group has been awarded a contract by the European Space Agency (ESA) to specify, design and develop an information system to support its transition towards digitized processes and systems.
  • The new web-based Product Assurance Database Management System as a Service (PASaaS) platform will comprise multiple modules to support project assurance and safety processes.

RHEA Group has been awarded a 3-year contract by ESA’s Product Assurance and Safety Department (TEC-Q) to develop a new product assurance platform to support ESA’s product assurance and safety (PA&S) processes. PASaaS will combine ESA’s six autonomous bespoke tools into one centralized open source application, enabling the Agency to manage its PA&S data more effectively, increase data traceability, and reduce operating costs and turnaround time.

TEC-Q already manages ESA’s Alert System (EAS) and Internal Problem Notification (IPN) applications, which are provided as a service to all ESA projects. However, currently each ESA project manages its own non-conformance database, which may be adopted by the corresponding Directorate. This differs between projects, depending on the permission requirements, as some projects are subject to severe restrictions for authorizing access to the non-conformance database. The PASaaS platform will remove this disparity, helping to maximize product assurance and safety in all of ESA’s missions.

The PASaaS project will include verification and validation of each of the existing system components and their interfaces. This includes authentication and authorization, project administration, and modules for Product Tree and data management, IPN and alerts, non-conformance report management, and data analytics and supply chain evaluation.

The PASaaS platform will ensure data interoperability for current and future PA processes for space missions, and allow data exchange with third-party tools based on current industrial standards, including data exchange through the Model-Based System Engineering (MBSE) Hub – a model sharing/exchange infrastructure that is being developed in a separate project for ESA, also led by RHEA. It will work with the Space System Ontology, which describes a common vocabulary for space projects and is being developed under the auspices of the Model Based for System Engineering (MB4SE) advisory group.

Sam Gerené, RHEA’s Competence Area Lead Concurrent Design and MBSE, said: “RHEA is used to working with very complex systems, using our model-based system engineering and concurrent design methodologies. In addition, we have worked on a number of related projects for ESA with the target of providing greater digital interoperability and continuity both within the Agency and with third parties. Through this project, we are delighted to be helping ESA to streamline its PA&S systems so they can be used across all ESA programmes, both current and future.”

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