Nowhere in Germany is bigger in the aerospace industry than Bremen. We spoke to Bremen-based scientists working on the space side of aerospace about their projects, their life in the city, and their tips on where to live and where to visit.
In 2018, Bremen is celebrating Space Year with a packed programme of events and activities that culminates in the International Astronautical Congress (IAC) in the autumn. We spoke to experts from the industry in the run-up to the IAC to find out what they are working on, what they love about Bremen, and what they feel the city is missing. You can read all their interviews in full on the city website Bremen.de.
Space for all
Why do we conduct research into space in the first place? Is it of any benefit to us down here on earth? Dr Marco Scharringhausen works for the Institute of Space Systems at the German Aerospace Center. One objective of his research is to better understand the earth and its processes. Finding out more about atmospheres on other planets could, for example, provide us with insights into the earth’s atmosphere and climate change. Dr Eva Hackmann from the Center of Applied Space Technology and Microgravity (ZARM) at the University of Bremen knows that it often takes decades for scientific findings to yield practical benefits. Her research into relativistic geodesy may also prove helpful in the fight against climate change. The environment is also a concern in the work of Dr Michael Buchwitz from the University of Bremen’s Institute of Environmental Physics. The physicist uses measurements obtained from satellites and aircraft to play his part in climate protection.
Dr Martin Sippel also works for the German Aerospace Center but on a different ambitious goal: "We want to make space travel more affordable for everyone." Daniel Pika from the ArianeGroup takes a similar view. Getting to a point where human beings can live on other planets is the end goal of his research. The research being done by Dr Alexander Schneider, a project manager at OHB SE, looks like it could be very useful for us consumers. Schneider wants to "dramatically reduce the price per bit per second (data volume) that is transported from the satellite to make it affordable for more people". Dr Sebastian Bartsch works on space robotics at the Robotics Innovation Center of the German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence. He believes that robots can have applications in a number of areas, from carrying out repairs to satellites and clearing orbits of space debris to making deep-see exploration more efficient.