Configuration Management for Space Projects

Date: Date to be Announced
Location: Midlands Innovation & Research Centre, Athlone, Ireland


The course is intended to provide the participant with an understanding of how to conduct the technical-administrative discipline of Configuration Management (CM). The course will be held in two parts. First part will be a generic, common sense approach to CM based on more than three decades of CM experience gained by the instructor. The second part will compare the lessons learned in part one with the ECSS CM standard ECSS-M-ST-40C. The participant will gain an understanding of the principles and procedures applied through CM to space projects; the interdisciplinary activities between CM and other project activities; and will get an idea of CM requirements tailoring for the level of project  complexity.

Background to Configuration Management

Configuration Management as a discipline was born in the post WWII era when the technical complexity of system’s increased dramatically. The drivers for the establishment of a CM discipline were the US armed forces followed by NASA in the second half of the fifties. CM was originally mechanical and electrical systems oriented and so were the CM practitioners.  This proved later on to become a problem when electronics and, in conjunction with this, software started to take more and more share within systems. As software is a non-tangible product, CM procedures had to be re-thought.

The next break in CM proceedings was caused by the proliferation of Personal Computer. While configuration status was mainly done by use of file cards for less complex projects, mainframe computer were utilised to manage configuration metadata of bigger systems. Nowadays, almost every CM exercising organization utilizes either tailored off-the-shelf, or self-developed programs for accountability of configurations controlled by them.

Whereas CM for software (and firmware embedded code) at component and unit level has, due to its unique processes, mostly been established as an independent discipline, the battle at the level of software integration with hardware is still going on.

Course Objectives

  • How to structure and document a system.
  • How to control the evolution of such a system.
  • How to enable the reporting of a certain configuration at a certain point of the product’s life-cycle.
  • How to verify that a desired configuration state has been achieved.
  • How to plan a CM organization and how to anchor it in contract language.
  • How to manage the configuration of digitized product definitions.

Who should Attend?

  • Engineering manager and project engineers involved in spacecraft and launcher development and design.
  • Engineers and project staff involved in production planning and control.
  • Engineers and technicians responsible for verification of product compliance with documented requirements and design


Engineers or technicians with good skills in reading and understanding of technical documentation (specifications, drawings/ lists, diagrams).

Course Syllabus

This course lectures the five plus one CM functions and the principles for implementing these functions:

  • Configuration Identification
  • Configuration Control
  • Configuration Status Accounting
  • Configuration Verification & Audit
  • CM Planning and Organizing
  • + CM of Digital Product Data

Course Structure

The course is organised in manageable sessions over a 3 day period. The agenda can be downloaded here: Configuration Management for Space Projects Agenda – Oct 18-20 2016

How You Will Learn

  • Verbal instructions by use of Power Point presentations.
  • Shown samples of configuration controlled documents.
  • Shown samples of configuration reports.

What You Will Take With You

  • CD of Power Point presentation
  • Certificate of Course Completion

Course Instructor:  Mr. Wolfgang Weiss.

Mr. Weiss has over 35 years of experience in CM matters from big size projects such as the Boeing E-3 “AWACS” to medium size, multi-national missile projects such as the RIM-116 “RAM”, to small projects such as aerospace components.

Mr. Weiss was contracted by ESA in the early 90s for developing an ESA standard CM discipline including a set of 8 ESA PSS type of documents. Due to the switch from ESA PSS to ECSS standards, these PSS’s were not formally released but did provide a sound basis for developing ECSS-M-40A.

Mr. Weiss was co-author of ECSS-M40A and -40B, participant in authoring of various US military CM and TDM standards of the past, and is voting member of the SAE (formerly EIA, GEIA, TechAmerica) G-33 committee on CM.

Course Fee

The fees for the 3 day Configuration Management for Space Projects training course are;

  • IAASS Member: €1400 per Participant
  • Non-Member: €1550 per Participant
  • Space Industry Skillnet Member: POA.

A discount is available to organisations who send more than 2 participants, where each additional participants will be charged at the rate of an IAASS Member. This fee includes all course material and lunches and course banquet on Wednesday evening.

Course Registration

Please register for attendance at the course by sending a completed booking form to the Network Manager, Catherine Lenehan by e-mail:

A course Booking Form can be downloaded here: Configuration Management for Space Projects 2016 – Booking Form

Contact & Directions

Participants requiring assistance with directions to the Space Industry Skillnets training venue in the:

Midlands Innovation & Research Centre,
Athlone Institute of Technology,
Co. Westmeath,

should contact the Network Manager, Catherine Lenehan at

GPS Co-Ordinates: 53.455613N  7.898979W


There is a wide variety of accommodation in Athlone to suit all levels of taste & expense.

Who are the IAASS?

The International Association for the Advancement of Space Safety, is a non-profit organisation dedicated to furthering international cooperation and scientific advancement in the field of space systems safety. In October 2004 IAASS became member of the International Astronautical Federation (IAF). For more information please visit The philosophy of the IAASS is best summed up in the following: “Over the long run the safety of all human beings in the global commons of space is a responsibility that must be shared by all space-faring powers” (G. Rodney, NASA Associated Administrator S&MA 40th IAF Congress, October 1989, Beijing – China)


1 thought on “Configuration Management for Space Projects

  1. Pingback: Space Industry Skillnet – Welcome | Space Industry Skillnet

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