SSDW tools

tools used in the space station design workshop

The tools used for the SSDW consist of custom-developed software dedicated to space mission conceptual design and simulation as well as commercially available, generaly-purpose software. Together, they allow for intuitive development and iterative assessment of the space mission design.


ASTOS is the “Analysis, Simulation and Trajectory Optimization Software” for aerospace scenarios. It is the reference tool at ESA and DLR for trajectory optimization, vehicle design, simulation as well as mission analysis. A user-friendly GUI provides the best platform to define whatever space scenario: ascent of a launcher, re-entry of lifting body, orbit transfer with low- or high-thrust, scientific satellite in orbit or destrucitve re-entry. 
The comprehensive library includes all the models required by the mission: atmosphere, celestial body, wind, hydrosphere, components, actuator and sensor. Once the scenario is simulated and/or optimized, the results are presented in automatically generated reports, graphic plots and a realistic 3D animation. ASTOS is a commercially available tool developed by ASTOS Solutions in Germany and used by almost all space agencies world wide and several companies. 

PRICE TruePlanning

PRICE stands for “Parametric Review of Information for Costing and Evaluation”. The original PRICE parametric cost model was invented in 1969, the year of the Apollo 11 moon landing, by Frank Freiman at RCA Corporation. It was initially conceives for estimating the acquisition and development cost of hardware-only systems. In the 50 years since, PRICE Systems has been expanding estimating capabilities far beyond hardware, collecting and analysing data from thousands of projects in aerospace, defence, and the commercial sector.

Today’s PRICE TruePlanning 2016 SR1 cost estimating suite integrates multiple cost models within the same framework. They can estimate systems comprising hardware structures, electronics, software, IT, purchased goods and services throughout their life cycle. All separate models can be merged into a single estimate, with the user determining the level of detail; it may reach from a single, small component up to a System-of-Systems (SoS), like a space station. The relationships among the different cost elements inside TruePlanning are linked, so that changes to one part of an estimate are reflected across all related elements within the same estimating file.

The standardized PRICE approach will give users speed, accuracy and, ultimately, transparency, leading to a defendable cost estimate. PRICE True Planning is used by space agencies like NASA, ESA, CNES and DLR. Space industry users include AIRBUS, Thales Alenia, ArianeGroup, Lockheed Martin, and Boeing.


Valispace is a browser-based software that enables engineers to collaboratively develop better satellites, rockets and other complex hardware products.
As a Concurrent Engineering Software for Systems Engineering, its main features are:

  • Single Source of Truth for all non-CAD engineering data, organized in connected models with formulas
  • Technical changes propagate and autonomously update analysis, simulations and documents
  • Complete history, version-control and notifications
  • Modules for Modemanagement, Alternatives-Trading, Margin Calculations, Requirements tracking, What-If-Analysis, timedependent-data calculations
  • Integrations to Matlab, Python, Word & Excel as well as an open API
  • Browser-based interface with a very short learning curve

Valispace can be used along the complete lifecycle, from early concurrent design sessions to detailed design and test-data storage.
More information can be found at