Failure Is Not an Option: Digital Transformation in Mission Assurance

By Stephen Ferguson

Guest Nancy Lindsey and Todd Tuthill

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Show Notes

In this episode, listeners are treated to a profound discussion on aerospace innovation and digital transformation with Nancy Lindsey, a NASA technical expert in reliability, maintainability, and availability, and Todd Tuthill, Vice President for the aerospace, defense and marine industry at Siemens Digital Industries Software. They delve into the complexities of mission assurance, the importance of digital tools in aerospace, and the future of space exploration.

Key Takeaways:

  • Nancy Lindsey discusses the evolution of digital transformation at NASA and its impact on mission assurance. 
  • Todd Tuthill shares insights into the digital transition from paper-based systems to sophisticated model-based systems in aerospace engineering.
  • Exploration of redundancy and its critical role in designing spacecraft to ensure mission success and safety.

This episode of the Engineer Innovation podcast is brought to you by Siemens Digital Industries Software — bringing electronics, engineering and manufacturing together to build a better digital future.

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Guest biographies and episode transcript

  • Nancy’s extensive career at NASA and her early work with the U.S. Navy. (02:38)
  • Todd’s background in aerospace and defense industries, and his experiences with Boeing and Raytheon. (05:48)
  • The role of digital transformation in enhancing mission assurance at NASA. (08:24)
  • Todd asks about the evolution of digital tools in aerospace engineering. (15:10)
  • Nancy details the shift from paper-based systems to digital transformation in NASA operations. (15:20)
  • Discussion on redundancy in spacecraft design and its critical importance in mission assurance. (19:48)
  • The concept of “graceful degradation” in spacecraft design, allowing missions to succeed despite failures. (22:52)
  • How NASA adapts to unexpected failures and uses innovative solutions to continue missions. (23:11)
  • Future visions of model-based systems and digital transformation in aerospace engineering. (28:04)

Nancy Lindsey  0:00  

It doesn’t matter if you’re black, white, purple, plaid, she, her, him, his, they, them. STEM doesn’t discriminate. The rules of science, technology, engineering, math and medicine are the same for everybody.

Chad Ghalamzan  0:19  

Hey, Stephen, who are we talking to in this episode of the podcast?

Stephen Ferguson  0:23  

Well, this week, we’re talking to NASA, which I think is probably the biggest name we’ve had on the podcast, and probably the biggest name in engineering, actually. 

Chad Ghalamzan  0:32  

That’s a huge juggernaut. Shall we talk about space?

Stephen Ferguson  0:35  

My guest is Nancy Lindsey, who’s a NASA technical expert in reliability, maintainability, and availability and safety and mission assurance, which is quite a title. But she’s basically responsible for something called mission assurance, which is making sure that missions happen as they’re planned to do, and they don’t have nasty things like accidents. And so it’s about managing risk. And it’s also about, really, what’s acceptable risk and what’s acceptable loss. Because the whole NASA philosophy you often hear is failure is not an option. But, of course, for failure not to be an option, you have to pay lots and lots of money. And modern-day space programs can’t always afford that. And so it’s talking about what sort of loss is acceptable. And it’s a really interesting chat. 

Chad Ghalamzan  1:18  

So her job is basically to make sure the words. “Houston, we have a problem,” don’t get spoken.

Stephen Ferguson  1:25  

Absolutely. And they’re so nervous, they won’t ever talk about collision. So they talk about conjunctions. And so it’s really interesting to be having those kinds of honest discussions with somebody from NASA, because you think, you know, they probably wouldn’t want to talk about these things. The other guest, I mean, it’s a joint podcast with our friends at the Talking Aerospace podcast, which is the other really popular Siemens podcast. And so the other guest on here is Todd Tuthill. And, together, we talked to Nancy, and it’s just a brilliant conversation. I think it’s about an hour long, this one. But we could have talked for about three hours, I think, because Nancy was such a fantastic guest.

Chad Ghalamzan  1:56  

All right, let’s take a listen.

Stephen Ferguson  1:59  

In this episode, I’m joined by Nancy Lindsey, who is a NASA technical expert in reliability, maintainability and availability, and also a safety and mission assurance. Hello, Nancy.

Nancy Lindsey  2:11  

Good morning. How are you doing today?

Stephen Ferguson  2:13  

I’m doing great. And I’m also joined by Todd Tuthill, who is vice-president for the aerospace and defense industry at Siemens Digital Industries Software. Hi, Todd. 

Todd Tuthill  2:21  

Hey. Stephen, Nancy. It’s a privilege to be on a podcast talking about space and aerospace, all kinds of fun things. Can’t wait for the conversation. Looking forward to it. 

Stephen Ferguson  2:31  

Yeah, I’m really excited. So Nancy, can you start off by telling us a bit about your career journey to this point, and how you ended up in such a prominent role at NASA?

Nancy Lindsey  2:38  

Sure. Be glad to. I’m glad to be here today, glad to get the opportunity to reach out and tell everyone about space and not rely on just movies to make the points that we need to make, what space is and why we’re going there. I’m Nancy Lindsey, I have spent the last 40 years in aerospace, engineering and safety and mission assurance. I started my career with the US Navy as a civil servant, training F-14 pilots, and then transitioned into space defense communication satellites, commercial communication satellites. If you use any sort of satellite, or your cell phone, I probably touched one of those satellites for you or been associated with one. I’ve been at Goddard Space Flight Center for the past, I won’t even say how many years, but I’ll let you do the math. 1996 is when I came here. I started my career back in 1984. And it wasn’t the space odyssey that, you know, sci-fi predicted, but it was very cool. And I’ve done reliability, quality assurance. I’ve done systems engineering. I’ve done safety and mission assurance. I’ve done design. I’ve done web design. I’ve done almost everything for NASA you can possibly do, except fly for them. I am restricted from flying because I get kidney stones. But that is another story for another day. But I have specialized in space environments and post-mission disposal and spacekeeping. Spacekeeping is the same thing as housekeeping in your own home. Except it’s keeping space. If we put something up there, we need to make sure that we’re not hoarders

 in space. We need to make sure that the space is open. You know, I think you’re gonna hear a little bit more about the numbers of how many objects we have up there later in the podcast. But I’m responsible for making sure when NASA puts something up, that it’s compliant and we’re going to take care of it in the long run and bring it back down. If you’re interested in trying to find out how to get to where I do what I do. I have a Bachelors of Science in computer science, aeronautical engineering, and a Master’s degree in space studies. My universities are Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and the University of North Dakota. Great schools, if you’re interested in being who I am, then go there and take the classes and you will be able to achieve what you want.

Stephen Ferguson  4:59  

That’s fantastic and very inspirational. Before we start, though, we should probably make it clear that you’re speaking about your personal experiences and perspectives throughout your career, and not speaking on behalf of NASA. So we’re gonna get it straight from you. The statements aren’t necessarily endorsed by NASA. 

Nancy Lindsey  5:14  

That is very correct. Thank you. 

Stephen Ferguson  5:16  

Okay, so lots of listeners will recognize Todd as a regular host of the fantastic Talking Aerospace podcast, but not everyone will be familiar with his career path. I think, Todd, that your career path has followed a similar path to Nancy’s but in the aircraft business instead of the space business.

Todd Tuthill  5:32  

Yeah, that’s true. I was thinking, man, Nancy, you have an impressive background. It’s, again, great to be on the podcast with you. I don’t know if I could compare myself directly to you. But we have done a few similar things. As Stephen said, my background is in aircraft. I started, we’ll say in the 80s, too. My career started in ’88, again, with a degree in engineering, and went into aerospace. I started with a company that’s since merged with Boeing called McDonnell Douglas, and I was at Boeing McDonnell Douglas for about 15 years, working on fighter aircraft. And I started my career on the F-15E, the Strike Eagle, that went to the war in Iraq in the early ’90s, if anybody remembers that. And I like to say in the early ’90s, the aircraft was deployed about the time it was beginning to be delivered. And I was one of the first, literally one of the first technical publications during the war. I wore a pager and I used to sometimes get called because we are a technical publications weren’t quite ready to follow the jet into combat. It was an exciting thing for some young kid to get to do, to see the aircraft I’d worked on and talked about on the news every night. That was a really a cool way to start my career. Again, like yours, Nancy, background primarily in systems engineering, my background’s in flight control systems engineering. After some of that initial product support role, following aircraft around, I went into design, was a part of designing many different aircraft. I spent 15 years at Boeing in St. Louis, then I moved to the cold northeast to Buffalo, New York, to work for a first-tier supplier called Moog aircraft. I was there for 17 years and had the privilege to work on all kinds of cool aircraft, from a military to commercial, and with a bunch of really great companies. And one of the highlights of my career, I was, I started the company as the systems lead on the flight control actuation system for the F-35. I spent seven years on the program, eventually becoming the chief engineer for the flight control system, the flight control actuation system on the F-35. Then kind of moved into leadership, became director of engineering, looked at lots of things, worked lots of programs, and then got… My wife and I were sick of the cold and the snow in Buffalo, and we moved to Tucson, Arizona, where I spent three years at Raytheon, working on all kinds of things that, unlike aircraft, don’t have landing gear, and you don’t want them to come back to you, to land somewhere and blow up. Did that for three years. And then I’ve been at Siemens now for about a year and a half, and just love my new role. Work with a lot of great people, a lot of great companies and I get to do cool things like talk to people like Nancy and Stephen on podcasts. That’s my career in a nutshell. 

Stephen Ferguson  8:08  

That’s very impressive, Todd. The topic of this podcast is the role of digital transformation in mission assurance. And you talked a bit about your expertise in mission assurance and model-based mission assurance. Nancy, could you describe for listeners exactly what mission assurance means at NASA?

Nancy Lindsey  8:24  

Sure. Mission assurance is all of the ilities that go around, trying to ensure that the mission is successful. And success doesn’t mean 100% successful. It means that we have achieved the goals of the mission. Or we’ve found a way to achieve a new goal for the mission. And mission assurance includes safety, being the safety of the asset itself, the mission, safety of the personnel supporting it, the facilities, the safety all around the mission. Then there is reliability. This is how long it will last, will it fail? How will it fail? What are the ramifications of a failure? It is the opposite of the systems engineering approach. Systems engineering focuses mostly on the what will happen as it performs. We focus on the other half of it. In my career, I’ve gone from systems engineering, I say that I’ve done the yin and the yang of the analysis. You know, I’ve looked from the positive side and then also from the negative side, achieving the requirements and not achieving the requirements. And then there is the quality assurance. We can’t put up a mission without ensuring that it can do what it can do. So quality assurance is the checks and balances of the design and making sure that we’ve done the right testing. Of making sure that we have what we say we have made in terms of requirements, what we say that how this is going to fail, that we actually have what we think we have. And quality assurance makes sure that that actually occurs. And those are the three main fields. That’s why we call it, you know, we have a three-legged stool. It’s safety, reliability and quality assurance, those things. Quality assurance also extends into documentation and testing and all of the operations because when we come back out of design and we deploy, you have things going right or wrong out in the field. So quality assurance comes back. And then mission assurance then feeds that information back and forth into the next design, and how we can recover from what we have today.

Stephen Ferguson  10:36  

What is model-based mission assurance?

Nancy Lindsey  10:39  

This is part of our digital transformation that we want to make at NASA. We have had the challenge of having an analysis, you do one analysis, and I’m going to use these terms throughout my talk. So I’m going to talk about them now. Let’s say we do a failure modes and effects and criticality analysis. That’s called a FMECA. So when we do that, we might do that at this moment in time, and as the design progresses, we would do it again. But we’re not keeping pace with the design. If we can digitally transform from requirements all the way through those analysis, and then into operations, we can march along together and not lose pace and not be dependent on – I’ll use you, Todd – on Todd sending me a document describing the design, and then I respond to it. But Todd’s moved on with other people into the next design. So we say that we’re, if we digitally transform, we’re going to avoid the n-1. I’m the n-1 design analysis, Todd’s at the n+2 version of the analysis or the design, and work together and we can share the information. And I feel like that’s the small potatoes because we could figure out how to communicate better and try to solve that problem on our own. But the other is to make sure that we can analyze these highly complex systems. We’re not getting simpler, we’re getting more complex. We talked about the F-14, we talked about the F-15. There’s the next generation aircraft, the next generation spacecraft, and then the constellations of spacecraft. Once we get into that, we want to ensure that we see all the potential failures that occur. Digital engineering model base gives us that. We can focus in and define what happens at the individual item. And then the system can then project that failure through. If you want to put it in common, you know, outside of the aerospace terms, if you get a flat tire on the way to work, the first effect is that you’re going to be late for work. The next effect might be that you lose your job. That’s what we can see, that is from our perspective, right? The finite perspective. But if you use a model-based approach to this, and, you know, I’m not saying the model knows everything, but if the, by each item being modeled, and knowing what it can or can’t do, what its dependencies are and how it affects the next one, in terms of itself, then we can go, okay, well, you lost your job, well, that means you didn’t go out for dinner, to the bar that night, you didn’t meet your significant other, you didn’t have child number one, and that child didn’t solve, you know, cure cancer. So because you got a flat tire, we didn’t cure cancer. We can’t poss… As the systems get more and more complex, we can’t possibly make all those connections. And the model-based allows us to see, we call them the known unknowns. If you envision a iceberg, you only see about 20% out in the ocean. The rest of it is that we know that it’s there. That’s the knowns. But we just don’t compensate for those ahead of time. And that’s where NASA tries to get to. We want to try to compensate ahead of time for any failure in space. So digital transformation allows us to do a better job than we’ve done before. We say that we want to be more consistent, more accurate and more efficient. Efficiency talks to that n-1 problem or making sure we’re all in sync. If we can do it faster, easier and better – not faster, cheaper and better because that’s a whole nother program – then we can keep pace and give the right information at the right time to decisionmakers. The other half is that we can get more accurate. We’re not wrong now. But we may not be seeing everything, and digital transformation will allow us to be able to use the computer to see all the potential scenarios.

Todd Tuthill  14:46  

So Nancy, could I ask you maybe a practical day-in-the-life question, maybe for our listeners who are saying, digital transformation? What’s that? So I want to ask you kind of a, it’s a three-part question. And I want you to think about a day in the life for a typical aerospace engineer building a spacecraft satellite with respect to digital tools, digital transformation. What was their life like 10 years ago? How is digital tools? What’s changed today? And what’s it going to look like 10 years from now?

Nancy Lindsey  15:15  

This is what it looked like 10 years ago, that was the design notebook.

Todd Tuthill  15:20  

Okay, design, and I think, for our listeners, I think we’re all on video, but I think this is going to go out as audio. So Nancy held up a book, a spiral-bound book with a bunch of pages. So that was 10 years ago, when you’re an engineer, you dealt with paper. Okay, got it.

Nancy Lindsey  15:33  

Exactly. And even in the manufacturing floor, we had something, I’ll go back a little bit further, because I worked for Lockheed Martin, I was actually on the floor building spacecraft. As an engineer, I monitored the technicians as a supervisor of the floor. So the doc folder, the actual documentation for how these technicians were to build, let’s say a solar array, was a piece of paper in a folder. They would go over to the computer on the other side of the room and verify that the piece of paper was still the same revision as it was when we put it in the folder. Once that check was done, that’s the lot, then they began to build. If it changed in the meantime, well, I checked the folder, I checked, and I stamped and I signed off that it was as built as the documentation, it was up to date. What we can do now is our CM systems, thank god, are tied into the floor right now, we no longer have this physical piece of paper that we’re passing around and expecting our technicians to fabricate to, we have the actual items. So if we have an engineering change order, then it’s right there. And they’re building the harness, they’re building the item to the current design and not to the previous design. And then the results… If now, you get into the testing, before we get, you know, you would, there would be a note, put in this doc folder. And it would be handwritten, you’d have to possibly translate. Now we use, you know, and then it would be manually put into a computer system to try to start that digital thread. Nowadays, that sign off, the QA approval, any issues that are found, are right in there with the information. So we go right from the step of the fabrication, there’s a problem, it opens up a problem report, it notifies the right people, it all does that kind of thing. What we’re trying to do is make sure that the rest of engineering and NASA operates the same way, that it’s not just the fabrication that is digitally transformed. It’s the analysis and the requirements and the operations. We’ve never been not digitally transparent in terms of operations. We don’t have a long cord going up to the satellite, we have telemetry, and there’s computers involved. But we now have the passing of data in a much more transparent way. And when we have that data, we need to know what to do with it. So now, that’s where these… a lot of people hear the term model-based. And what does that mean? We’ve done models forever. Well, yeah, there’s been the thermal model, the reliability model, now you have a system model where you can take these inputs, whether it’s requirements at the very beginning, or whether it’s operational data trends that you never thought you would see. Now you can put that in and you can go okay, now you have that trend, that high temperature. Now I can say, as a reliability engineer, you’re looking at the model going, oh, well, you have another failure mode that you didn’t think was possible before. Now you have one that is actually in place. That would, you know, you have a… I can’t predict the exact day. That’s not what reliability does, you know, kind of like your weather people. They can’t predict the exact moment of a rain shower. But they’ll try. But we can predict that, yes, we think it’s more likely than not that you are going, you’re tending towards a failure or your… or non-performance.

Todd Tuthill  19:20  

And if I could, I would like to go back to something you talked about earlier in design, and maybe amplify what system design looks like and safety design looks like for people who’ve never done it. We’ll talk about it in terms of spacecraft. So if you could kind of talk about redundancy in design and the differences in mission assurance in design for something that’s going to carry a person, a manned kind of vehicle, versus satellite, something that’s not going to have a person on it, and what are some of your considerations from a design standpoint and redundancy between those two things.

Nancy Lindsey  19:54  

It’s the same term but I’m gonna use the more NASA-speak, we call it human-rated and robotic, because we don’t differentiate, you know, we don’t say that a satellite can’t hold humans. But right now it can’t, it’s usually a little bit too small. But you extend the definition of what a satellite is, the space station is a manmade satellite around the Earth, so you see where we go, you know, human-rated or robotic. So in terms of redundancy, I’ll answer it, you won’t hear redundancy come out right away. But I’ll get there. The difference between the two is in terms of what is our acceptable level of mission success risk? Can we sustain a failure and still go forward? If a failure in terms of human-rated, if a failure takes out, or has the potential to permanently harm, disable or kill a human, that’s an unacceptable, we can’t possibly have that failure, we need to find a way around it. If a failure in terms of the robotic system can take out the mission, or take out a, let’s say, we have three instruments and takes out an entire instruments, we have a significant capability loss. So maybe we might want to mitigate that, but we don’t have to eliminate it. So that’s when we apply redundancy as a technique to achieve that mitigation. So we don’t put redundancy in just because it’s a human rating. It’s in regard to the risk to human life. So if we can lose the oxygen, or the life support systems, of course, that’s, you know, that in all the movies, of course, that will have redundant systems, we’ll have more testing, we’ll have a whole lot of other mitigations that we can stack up. Redundancy is just one tool in our toolbox, if you let me use that euphemism. It’s just one. And then the other one is making sure we test it and assure that it’s performing as designed. And not some sort of, you know, we all joke about when we get something in it, and everybody’s been all happy about, you know, buying this product. And when you get it, well, I must have got the Friday before a holiday or the Friday after the holiday or after the Superbowl Monday. That must be my version of this product. We try to avoid that perimeter altogether. But that’s where quality assurance comes in. So we use different techniques to make sure we don’t fall into any of those gaps. So redundancy is just one.

Stephen Ferguson  22:46  

For the old Gene Kranz quote, failure is not an option, I guess sometimes failure is an option at NASA. 

Nancy Lindsey  22:52  

Don’t quote me on that one. But we say the yes, failure is an option if we can gracefully recover from that failure and achieve a success. We don’t want true failures, nobody ever does. But we want to be able to have graceful degradation. We want to be able to recover from failures. We have a spacecraft that shall remain nameless, like, I’m going to keep it there, that has lost its comm system. It can’t take its digital command. So our NASA engineers are using a system of Morse code to be able to communicate and control that spacecraft. It’s been successful for five, I think it’s five years now, doing it’s control that way. We had a failure but we found a way around it. And we continue to make the mission a success. So it’s success in the face of failure.

Stephen Ferguson  23:46  

A couple of weeks ago, didn’t we with the Odysseus commercial lunar lander, which lost its guidance system. And they used it… It’s supposed to have a laser guidance system. That failed, I think. And they used a experimental Lidar system and got it kind of landed, didn’t they? It landed and fell over, I think, as well. But yeah, they got some data out of it, as well.

Nancy Lindsey  24:04  

Regrettably, the solar arrays weren’t pointed in the right direction, at a battery. Just like your cell phone. No, worky.

Todd Tuthill  24:11  

If I could pull something out of the headlines from aerospace recently, I think all of us heard about the 737 that lost a door. So I’ll talk about the analogy of aircraft to spacecraft, as Nancy said. She said there’s things designed to deal with failure. Well, you know, fortunately, doors don’t blow off commercial aircraft and we don’t lose pressurization very often. But when we do, there’s systems, there’s backup systems we all see when we get on an aircraft You know, we probably don’t listen when the flight attendant stands up before a flight and says, hey, you know, if we lose pressure, this oxygen mask is going to come down, put it on yourself and then help the children around you. Well, those things, those oxygen masks probably saved the lives of everyone in that aircraft as well as the seatbelts we’re forced to wear. Those seatbelts saved the lives of all those people on that aircraft. It sounds simple. Sometimes those systems are simple, sometimes they’re very complex. But that’s an example in aerospace of when a backup system prevented a far more catastrophic kind of failure. And just like spacecraft, aircraft are full of those kinds of things, too. It’s similar kinds of systems engineering, similar kind of idea. You don’t want the aircraft or the spacecraft to ever do something bad. But when it does, you want to be able to recover from it gracefully.

Nancy Lindsey  25:27  

Yeah, and on that door, the aircraft didn’t tear apart, it just lost the door.

Todd Tuthill  25:33  

That’s right. And there were structural things, we can make a whole two-hour podcast about that one incident and about the design of commercial aircraft to not let that happen.

Stephen Ferguson  25:41  

Nancy, how far along that digital transformation route are you in mission assurance?

Nancy Lindsey  25:47  

Like I said, on the floor, we’re there, we’re good, and we digitally transformed the build records, we digitally transformed the problem area, both in design and fabrication, and then on orbit. Where we are still struggling and getting there is in terms of the making sure that we as a design entity and mission assurance entity can go together. We at Goddard, and my team has done reliability and system safety. System safety is just the term we use for spacecraft. And then mission safety versus the slips, trips and falls safety, the stuff that you have in your house, the local Walmart, or whatever your favorite store is. You know, they have rugs around and things like that to prevent you from slipping and falling. We use system safety to differentiate from those two. But those two, we’ve actually been able to achieve the next, the digitally transform, and use model-based to do our traditional work. And it’s completely matched. And we even… especially in terms of reliability, we used a model-based tool that’s a partner of Siemens, but we use that tool and we’re actually able to consider additional failure causes that we hadn’t considered before. And, you know, you heard at the beginning, back in 1984, is when I started. So I’ve been looking at failures and success for a long time. And the idea that a tool prompted additional thinking, that’s what we want our engineers to do is to think about the failure, not try to imagine and think through the entire system to figure out what the effect is. Let a computer that is better at that do that. And then allow us to think about the engineering. What is possible and not possible in this failure chain? What are the real causes? What are the real mechanisms? What can go wrong with this item? Because we can think in that space and really understand that space and allow the computer to aid us to do the rest, to do the other parts of the analysis. So I would say, in terms of where we’re at, I would say we’re not quite graduating with our Bachelors of Science degree in digital transformation. We’re more probably in junior high to high school.

Stephen Ferguson  28:17  

Which is very credible. Are there limits, do you think, to model-based mission assurance? Is there a danger that we’ll become too dependent on computers making decisions that could be taken by or should be taken by humans?

Nancy Lindsey  28:28  

Well, that now you get into the, you know, when will AI take over the world? kind of thing. You always have the problem, if you engage with the digital transformation, that you will… garbage in will get garbage out. So you want to use the digital aids for what they’re designed to do. Not necessarily try to allow the computer to make all your decisions for you. You know, we talked about the door and whether the redundancy is the only option. You don’t want the digital transformation or the model-based to tell you put in another door, another structure, put in more, make it more redundant. You want the human to get in there to go, okay, yeah, I can trade these risks and that’s where… Because you can’t really, right now anyway, the AI, the ML is all about looking at trends, looking at information and trying to, based on a rule set that has been set, make decisions based on that rule set. Your self-driving car makes a decision based on a rule set. But now you want to be able to trade in a more non-rule based way about what is the best or what is the best combination of mitigations. Because I don’t think it’ll make the decisions for us in the long run, but it could recommend decisions that we, you know, or recommend actions we could take that may get us to be able to think about options we might not have thought about before.

Stephen Ferguson  30:06  

Anything to add on that, Todd?

Todd Tuthill  30:07  

Since you mentioned it, okay, I’ll mention the podcast. Because we’re recording this on a Friday. Two days ago on Talking Aerospace Today, we had an AI expert from Raytheon, a tech fellow in AI, join me. And we talked about the future of AI, and where AI is gonna go. And I won’t repeat everything we said, but we kind of dreamed about the future. But maybe I’ll talk about it this way, the way I look at AI, we talk about digital transformation in kind of five levels at Siemens. We talk about the configuration, I’m going to put it in PDM and find it. We talk about connection. Once things are in PDM in different places, I can connect them together and do analysis with them, maybe somewhat manually, somewhat digitally. Then we talk about automation, where computers start doing mundane things that people don’t want to do. And then computers can eventually do really cool innovative things that we only thought people could do. And once you can automate things, you can start to generate results. And we have already seen… You’ve seen ChatGPT and generative AI, they became popular 14, 15 months ago when OpenAI launched ChatGP. Generative algorithms, Nancy talked about it, rule-based algorithms have been around for a long time. And there’s all kinds of things we can generate now – designs, other kinds of things. And once we can generate something once, in what we call a digital twin, we can take it into connected to simulation, and use simulation to evaluate those designs and begin to optimize. So you think about the kind of the maturity level of those five levels of configure, connect, automate, generate and optimize. We look at companies and ask companies to consider where they’re at. And we can look at that in terms of any kinds of design. We can look at that in terms of AI. Right now, the state of AI that I see, we have AI algorithms working in, what I’ll say, single domains across all those things. In other words, we have AI that can generate basic designs for you of individual things. We can’t, like Skynet, say, create me a spacecraft or aircraft and the designs pop out the other end. We’re not there. Now will we be there someday? I don’t know. Listen to the other podcast to find out. We talk about the Holodeck on Star Trek and giving voice commands to create a whole spaceship. Now that’s probably hundreds of years in the future, or maybe not. But there’s all kinds of exciting things and the cool thing about AI, the AI is advancing so much faster – if you just go back two or three years – than anyone could have imagined it would advance. And like Nancy said, there needs to be some caution in how we use it. But I think there’s incredible benefits to AI, it’s going to go incredible places in the future in just the ability to do things quicker. But also just the ability. To me, one of the big powers of AI, one of my favorite things to talk about is automating mundane things. And we all went, you know, Nancy went to engineering school, I did too. And I’m gonna bet if we look at the, especially the first 10 years of our career, what we thought it was going to be in college, and what it actually looked like… Because I spent a whole lot of time looking for things, putting data in spreadsheets, doing manual things that I… Because, you know, when you’re in college, you think I’m going to think big thoughts all day, I’m just going to create innovative, cool things. And, you know, and harps are going to play, it’s going to be nirvana. And the reality is you do a whole lot of manual things. And that was certainly the case in the ’80s and the ’90s. And one of the really great things automation and AI has done for us, kind of the third step in the maturity level, is to automate all those mundane things, write reports for us, write test reports, create just basic documents and things. And to me, that’s the power I see of AI today, of really doing a bunch of mundane automations and beginning to do that optimization. And I think, as the years go by, and in the not too distant future, we’re going to see a whole lot more advanced things with automation. So there’s really exciting things now for AI, many, many exciting things to come in the future. 

Nancy Lindsey  34:07  

And I’ll just add, that’s where assurance comes back in. You might have the ChatGPT, or something else, start or create your term paper, your design, but you should make sure that what it created is actually truth and can actually be, is physically possible, versus just a trend. Because our AI is being influenced by anything and everything that’s out in the ether of the internet. If somebody puts something out there that is false – and I’m not talking about false news and all of that, it’s a whole nother podcast – but they assert that there is something true if we say that, you know, somebody asserts that F=Mx2a, well, it can propagate through and come through into your term paper potentially or into your design. We want to make sure that we have assurances put into the process to ensure that what we get out is plausible.

Todd Tuthill  35:13  

So I guess maybe said another way, if you’re in college right now thinking about a career in engineering, thinking that AI is going to make you obsolete – absolutely not. There’s going to be an absolute need for engineers, I think, for the absolute foreseeable, well, many decades, hundreds of years. AI does not take away the need for engineers. AI makes engineers jobs more interesting and easier, I think. But you’re right. And more productive, because if we boarded a new airliner tomorrow, and the flight attendant said, “Hey, welcome to Automation Airlines, you’re the first person to ever fly on this aircraft. We generated it with ChatGPT yesterday. We’re not sure if it’s going to work. But we’re pretty confident it’ll be fine.” Right? I think we’d all get off the airline, right? We get on airlines with the assurance that the FAA has mandated high levels of standards and that people have tested and verified, and that doesn’t change with AI. It’s just a lot of the mundane work goes away, gets done by a computer. There’s always going to be real people looking over what the algorithms – and whether it’s AI or just digital transformation in general – but looking at what the computers have done to make sure it’s been done with quality, and properly.

Nancy Lindsey  36:25  

I 100% agree with that. And I’ll emphasize again, when we did our digital transformation in model-based for reliability, my reliability engineers, my support team was, you know, instead of focusing on copying and pasting the failure effects in an Excel spreadsheet and focusing on trying to get it through there and trying to visualize the system in their heads or drawing it on a whiteboard, they were able to focus on the engineering of failure, what are truly causes for NASA and what aren’t. What are the mechanisms and what aren’t. That’s where we want the engineering brain to be, not learning how to do fancy things with Excel. 

Todd Tuthill  37:06  

Digital transformation allows engineers to do the really creative, interesting things they studied in college and get rid of the stuff they don’t want to do. We can hand that off to the algorithms and do the interesting, innovative, important things. That’s what we want digital transformation to do. 

Stephen Ferguson  37:21  

So one of the other big changes that happened during your career, Nancy, is the commercialization of space, as well. We’ve managed to reduce the cost of getting to space, but can we do that without compromising safety? So how do we ensure that newer commercial spacefarers have similar standards of mission assurance as NASA? What can we learn from that? And what can they learn from NASA’s approach to mission assurance? 

Nancy Lindsey  37:39  

Well, the biggest benefit of NASA, as you heard, I kind of went from the US Navy, DOD, and then now, you know, I spent some time in commercial spacecraft, and then I went to civil spacecraft. The biggest advantage of NASA is that we are willing to share, we’re willing to share our processes, we’re willing to share our advice, our consults, we’re willing to share… Even we have available to any universities trying to put up a small spacecraft or other spacecraft, we have a reliability, full spacecraft reference model in the, that Siemens tool called me. And we can share that with any university and go, okay, you now have our starting point to design your spacecraft from. You have our thought process, we’re willing to give lessons learned and share that. So that’s the one piece that is different in terms of civil versus commercial, commercial is still driven by profit so they can take… but they have profit. When we talk about civil versus commercial space, we have to be good stewards of the taxpayers’ money. If we continue down a road where we don’t see us achieving a particular mission, we might end up being canceled by Congress or by NASA authorities, or we might not get awarded at all. But a commercial entity can take that risk. So we’ve seen both the good and the bad of going commercial. The good is somewhat, the SpaceX and things like that, can take additional risks that the US government can’t take. Then we can leverage those to include that new capability within our space. But as soon as we start to say, we’re going to put NASA astronauts on there, we want to make sure that those risks have been well thought through because we don’t control the process, much like you don’t control the process that makes your cell phone, you just have to trust that it has occurred. Whereas Todd says the FAA has certified this airliner, you know, that we have a process. So we need to make sure on that. Where it gets really complicated is, okay, now you have the doors open to put many more missions in space. Like I said, universities can launch small sets. We have OneWeb designing spacecraft, you know, so many come off the production line at one time. And then they put these large constellations in there. Well, one of their mitigations for success is making sure that they have the right number if they stop working. But they have duds. And the small sets particularly have trouble with being duds up there, because they’ve taken more risk than we normally do. But we want to help, we got initiatives out there. But there are… We have international agreements out there that say, you shall take care of yourself. And we saw the first penalty of the EchoStar spacecraft, or EchoStar Corporation, getting penalized for spending their fuel on generating revenue versus being able to take themselves out of orbit. To be honest, the penalty isn’t going to really affect their bottom line. But at least it’s a penalty. It’s not like they just got a free ride. So the transition is good and bad for the industry, it helps us advance more quickly. But then it also can hurt us in terms of this – we talked a little bit earlier about it – spacekeeping. That we all of a sudden have a bunch of junk up there that we now have to figure out a way to deal with. And I happen to be involved with a team that is a combination of JAXA, that’s the Japanese Space Agency – sorry, acronyms – and the European Space Agency, ESA, and NASA, looking at what we can do in terms of servicing. That’s the, sort of, the NASA focus. And then JAXA and ESA focus is more in terms of active debris removal, ADR. And this is going up and taking care of those assets that we have been tracking for decades. And I got interested in this particular question, I’ll say, when I worked my very first defense communication launch. I was sitting on console, trying to get the, I had a lot of engineers in my head that give the goes, and trying to get to the very out the launch window. We had dealt with that we loaded liquid oxygen and it got very cold, it triggered a limit, we dealt with that issue. Got everybody to buy in that yes, space is colder than we are right now. Let’s move forward. Now the launch window as we’re going through all of that, the launch window’s ticking away, we get to everybody saying go, and then we get a hold. What the heck is this hold for, we have to wait 10 minutes of the 11 minute, what’s left of 11 minute, the window has only got 11 minutes left, we have to wait for space debris to go over. Picture yourself as, you know, Patrick Mahomes, and your throwing to Kelce. Okay? And you have to wait for the right… to get all the defenders out of the way so you can get that ball to him. That’s kind of how we have to make sure because we’re launching and everything else is continuing to move. So we don’t want to launch and then have a conjunction of our rocket or our mission with what’s up there now. So we had to wait 10 minutes, just sit with our hands in our lap waiting for space debris to go by. And I’m like, oh my god, what is this? Why aren’t we taking care of this? So I got interested, I did some research on it. But we… oh, and I should say we did end up launching within like 30 seconds left in that window. We had a successful launch. Everything is good. The mission has probably aged out by now. But it was great. It was the first inner Apogee Boost DoD communication satellite. It had its own, we’ll say, failure or anomaly. Big word for failure or did-not-go-as-planned incident, where fuel splashed. And we had to just get rid of it and we burned mission fuel. But again, this is failure may not be, quote unquote, an option. But failure is possible. Yes, if. You can have a failure if you can recover from it and we did recover from it. But we were able to get a successful mission off and I got interested in debris. And through my University of North Dakota graduate work, I continued to get interested in spacekeeping, and I’ll plug for my own website, rcktmom.com. Rocket Mom dot com. Some of the work is out there for the literature from that time period and the rules. There’s a lot of work that’s done for that.

Stephen Ferguson  44:55  

I love your use of the word conjunction, which means two things occupying the same point in space and time, because NASA doesn’t use the other word. 

Nancy Lindsey  45:04  

No, we do not use the other word. 

Stephen Ferguson  45:06  

So next time I have a conjunction with another driver in my car, I’m going to tell the insurance company that it’s a conjunction and not the other word. Todd, did you have some numbers about the amount of debris in space for us?

Todd Tuthill  45:16  

I did, and Nancy is certainly the expert here, but I can use Google. I looked up some things knowing we’re going to talk about this and, frankly, I was shocked. I had no idea there was this much space stuff in the atmosphere. So that these are from an NASA website I found this morning. So it says debris comes in different sizes, and this website classified it into larger than 10 centimeters, around one centimeter, and about larger than one millimeter. And it said 10 centimeter, that’s something that could destroy an entire satellite, something larger than 10 centimeters. And you say, really? Well, think about high school physics. It’s 1/2 mv2. And there’s an enormous amount of kinetic energy in space, because these objects are moving very fast relative to each other. So that’s why such a small object could take out a large satellite. And about 30,000 things in space about that size that could take out a whole satellite. About 700,000 that could penetrate the ISS or disable some part of a spacecraft at about one centimeter. And then 200 million things about the size of a millimeter that could take out a subsystem on a spacecraft. And you say, that’s a lot of stuff. How do we avoid it? Well, space is a pretty big place. And maybe that’s a question for Nancy. If there’s all that stuff out in space, how did you know when you were launching that aircraft that day, that there was space out there? And if I get a chance to go aboard the ISS, or one of these other commercial things in the future, how do they avoid this stuff? How does that happen? 

Nancy Lindsey  46:48  

We have radar systems. We have our conjunction avoidance and planning, our carrier system that uses all of this radar information, ground and everything, and some DoD assets as well, to try to predict where the larger pieces are. We don’t – again, this is the avoid the big pieces, and design for impacts with the small pieces. So what we do is we put these, they’re called Whipple shields, on sensitive items. You know, a small piece of debris may be able to impact and penetrate a subsystem. But if that subsystem isn’t going to be 100% detrimented in this spacecraft fragment from that intrusion, then we don’t have to put the shield on that, maybe we can allow that to happen. We have these multi layer insulation that sort of helps us to keep the spacecraft at the right temp. We can design for a controlled temperature, we can’t design for the variations of dark and cold in space. So we keep it to its own temperature. Then, if the item inside the spacecraft is sensitive to the penetration, or can be damaged by a penetration, much like, you know, if you have, God forbid, but if you get shot, and it goes through your skin, and it doesn’t hit any internal organs, well, that’s a bad day, but you’re going to survive. So bulletproof vests, that’s kind of the same concept that we use for the spacecraft. We put a thing called the Whipple shield, it’s just stacked pieces. We would think, oh, well, you just need to put something really big in front. But no, you want to use physics. The first intrusion through the first piece of the shield uses up some of the energy. Then it goes through an open space, and then it goes to the next one. But if you had it going through just one, it wouldn’t lose as much energy as having to go through the surface, go through the inside and go out again. As you go through the physics, it loses more if you give it space in between. So then when it gets in, it’s just harmless. It’s not going to do any harm at all. Or it is stopped. And you’ll see, Todd didn’t mention it, but that some of those small pieces are pieces of flecked paint, or anything else. Now, they’re going at, you can theorize 400 miles an hour, there’s exact kilometers per second numbers. But now you have that small piece of paint traveling at a full, say, glass surface. It’s not quite glass, but on a window on the pergola of the ISS, you can google and find images of micro meteorite hits on that pergola. You could also find impacts on this retired Space Shuttle windows and things like that. And these are the worst case of rocks hitting your windshield, kind of thing. They are not just the small, you know… They’re small, yes, but they’re traveling very fast. Physics does not change in space, you just don’t have as much gravity. You still have F=MA. It’s the cardinal rule.

Stephen Ferguson  50:09  

Have you managed to tag or has anyone managed to tag lots of the bigger bits of debris?

Nancy Lindsey  50:13  

We have identified them with radar. What we have, the small set industry in particular, has developed its, I’d say it’s about the size of a postage stamp. It’s a standalone, stick-on tag that gives a GPS signal. I would liken it to, if you’re not a space geek like myself, I would liken it to your ‘find your Apple watch’ and, you know, your Apple tag on your phone, that kind of thing. It’s self-contained, and it will allow us to find that particular asset. And that’s where that JAXA, ESA kind of active debris removal can go up – and my hands are looking like a grapple – but they can go up and grab onto it. It’s much like a – for those that are old enough – the claw machine at the fair or your local restaurant, that you can, you know, put a quarter in and get a stuffed animal out. It’s like that except on a bigger scale. But again, things in space don’t always stay because once they’re not in service anymore, they age: radiation, thermal cycling, everything happens. And those little pieces that Todd talked about, they are hitting and doing things and that piece, that spacecraft may not be in pristine condition anymore. So we really have to have an entire industry in regard to spacekeeping: the inspection of those assets, the tracking of those assets, and then eventually the active debris removal of those assets. And our international partners are looking at that debris removal. We’re looking at servicing because if we have assets up there, they’re good stores of taxpayer money. If we can refuel a mission, instead of putting up a new one, half the cost or less. 

Stephen Ferguson  52:07  

How do we make sure we don’t make the same mistakes in the future and ensure that space remains usable in the future?

Nancy Lindsey  52:13  

That is where those space treaties have come into this. Before we were, we thought space would stay infinite. There is a lot of space up there. But every time a mission is proposed, its demise is considered in the design and the process, whether it will be boosted up and allowed to naturally decay and come back down, or whether it is in its plan needs to save off some capability to actually bring itself back in. All of that needs to be planned out. Do we have missions that violate our rules? Sure, we are trying to accommodate those missions that had another plan and make sure that we can do the next thing better. I just… The Hubble Space Telescope was supposed to come back with the use of the space shuttle that no longer exists. So NASA is looking into how to make sure that we can properly dispose of the Hubble Space Telescope as well as other assets.

Todd Tuthill  53:18  

So about the Hubble, I was thinking about just something from when I was a kid. And I think it was called Skylab. And I remember when Skylab deorbited and I just have this thing pictured in my mind, if somebody had built a large baseball glove in their backyard to catch Skylab. So are you telling me that sometime in the future, we’re going to be building big baseball gloves to catch the Hubble when it comes out of the sky? Is that going to happen?

Nancy Lindsey  53:41  

Not quite catch it… 

Todd Tuthill  53:42  

I didn’t understand mv2 when I was…

Nancy Lindsey  53:45  

We understood that it’s going to be a fastball coming in. And I can catch a fastball with the glove. You know, you can liken the Star Trek tractor beings to be able to bring these things in more slowly. What we have now truly is like that grapple that you see in the fairs or whatever. But the e-submissions are going up there and then that piece of propulsion then brings it down in a way you don’t get a break up, or it’ll hit the oceans, so we increase its speed coming in. There’s also designs out there that are on the table. You know, we’re just burgeoning into this now, to actually take care. We did the first half of control, we made rules about what you should or should not do. Now we have those things that might have broken the rules or bent the rules a little bit. Now we have to have something that will take care of what we left up there in the ’60s and ’70s. And now we have to take care of things that may have lost their capability for some reason, beyond no malicious intent, but just a spacecraft that has failed and can’t do what it planned to do. So there’s not that but there’s missions that are, you know, we’re going to now create a stack, the robotic spacecraft and then this other spacecraft, and allow that to control the reentry so that we can allow it to burn out, or allow it to harmlessly hit the ocean, so that we can not cause any detriment to society, to assets on the surface. And then, of course, if we know where it’s gonna land, we might be able to retrieve it. Not with a baseball glove. But with the appropriate missions that could take any potential leftover pieces. And most of what comes in, just like we saw with Skylab, creates a lot of very pretty fireworks in the sky, but a lot of it burns up. But there will be pieces of different spacecraft that come down, you can find those on Google, as well. Rocket bodies and things that people have found. These are titanium and things like that. So you’re not looking for huge pieces, you won’t be having a lot of rocket fuel being in the ocean, or any of that kind of stuff. We deplete all of that, all the missions deplete that before with those things happen. But use the glove up on orbit first, and then have the player roll it back in.

Todd Tuthill  56:07  

Sounds like a much better idea. 

Stephen Ferguson  56:09  

So we’re at the hour point of this now, and we could probably talk for another two hours, I think, and Nancy could easily, as well. Todd, have you got any final questions for Nancy?

Todd Tuthill  56:17  

Final questions for Nancy? I’m going to go back to where Nancy started. She started in a good place, she was talking to students. And let’s say that I’m a middle school student. And I think space is cool. Because I think about the intense need for aerospace engineers right now to kind of advance because, you know, we’re not on video. But if we were you’d know that Nancy and I are not going to be around probably 20 years from now designing cool things. Talk to the next generation, if you would, Nancy, and tell us some things that you think they need to do to prepare for and get ready for a career in STEM. And why is STEM so cool, because I think STEM is awesome. 

Nancy Lindsey  56:56  

Well, STEM is awesome. Now STEM, it is not the coolest classes in school, it is not going to get you the diversity letter. But it will get you the ability to train fighter pilots. To send up rockets into space. To potentially be the next person to walk on the moon. We, NASA, are looking at Gateway and Artemis. We are going to be sending STEM people to the moon. We have been sending astronauts up, they do have STEM degrees, but they also are fighter pilots, as well, a lot of them. But as we move into this next phase, we’re going to be looking for additional engineers and STEM. And I’ll even put STEMM with an extra M on it, we need the medical people, as well. So we need people that are able to achieve their discipline in another whole environment. You know, you can watch the old 1970s – you know, I’m sure they’re streamable – space stations on the moon or any of the sci-fi movies. There’s a lot of… Anything that you’re doing nowadays has STEM related to it. You pick up your cell phone, there’s STEM in your cell phone. Focusing on your math and your science will give you a good base, you can go for your advanced degrees, it doesn’t matter whether it’s computer science, whether it’s engineering, whether it’s medical, any of those would really help to get us to the next step. Because we have to have a whole new ecosystem, a whole new way of living, and provide all the things that you’re used to on Earth in the next place, whether it be the moon or Mars. You can’t bring – you can, but it’s not really… If you have an emergency in Maryland, that’s where I am, I would not ride in an ambulance all the way to California to get medical attention. I’m going to go to my local hospital. Well, I’m on Mars, I need to have medical attention, I need to have the engineering, I need to use a 3D printer, I need to be able to grow food, I need to be able to do everything that I do here, there. Because I can’t just transport things until we find out how Star Trek did that. We can’t transport things immediately there. But on the moon, it’s a little closer. Still, you’re driving from Maryland to Maine. You’re not going to do that in a medical emergency or to buy food. You’re going to need to get the supplies in the right place at the right time. And that’s where STEM comes from. It’s really opening your mind to what the future can be. If you see something in your sci-fi movie, if you go into STEM, you could possibly make that a reality. But if you don’t go into STEM, you may be using it but you’re not one of the ones that are going to make it a reality. Do you want to be just a user or do you want to make it happen? If you want to make it happen, go into STEM. And it may not be sexy, or really cool – whatever the new term is because I’m getting old in my career – but it will be what comes out cool in the long run. If you think Elon Musk is the coolest guy, he’s running SpaceX, and that’s what you think is great. Well, he’s got a STEM degree. So who do you want to be? And it doesn’t matter if you’re black, white, purple, plaid, she, her, him, his, they, them. Any of those, it doesn’t matter. STEM doesn’t discriminate. The rules of science, technology, engineering, math and medicine are the same for everybody. Go into STEM, and you can achieve the next great thing.

Stephen Ferguson  1:00:44  

So I think that you’re pretty cool, Nancy, and this has been a really interesting and very exciting talk. I feel completely inspired about it. I’m not sure about you, Todd?

Todd Tuthill  1:00:52  

It has been a blast. Yeah. Thank you, Nancy, for taking time out of your busy day to come talk to us about aerospace and digital transformation and the cool things in orbit.

Stephen Ferguson  1:01:02  

So make sure you check out Nancy’s website, which is rcktmom.com. Space Observations by Rocket Mom, which looks really interesting. Check out Todd on the Talking Aerospace podcast. Like that, follow it, leave a five-star review and you can find me on the Engineer Innovation podcast. Thank you both for being such fantastic guests. And thank you for listening to this podcast.

Nancy Lindsey  1:01:24  

Thank you.

Todd Tuthill  1:01:25  

Thank you.

Host  1:01:30  

This episode of the Engineer Innovation podcast is powered by Simcenter. Turn product complexity into a competitive advantage with Simcenter solutions that empower your engineering teams to push the boundaries, solve the toughest problems and bring innovations to market faster.

 Stephen Ferguson – Host

Stephen Ferguson – Host

Stephen Ferguson is a fluid-dynamicist with more than 30 years of experience in applying advanced simulation to the most challenging problems that engineering has to offer for companies such as WS Atkins, BMW and CD-adapco and Siemens.

Nancy Lindsey

Nancy Lindsey

Nancy J. Lindsey has over 35 years of experience in aviation and aerospace engineering, working on various projects throughout the space vehicle life cycles. She has expertise in systems engineering, safety, and mission assurance. Her roles have included supporting human factors development initiatives, space servicing missions, space debris mitigation, telecommunication satellite production, and ground system management. She currently holds the position of Deputy Reliability & Maintainability Technical Fellow at NASA Headquarters and is an expert at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. Mrs. Lindsey has also developed tools such as the GSFC Mission Configuration Tool and Failure Integration and Analysis Tool. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science & Aeronautical Engineering and a Master’s degree in Space Studies.

Todd Tuthill

Todd Tuthill

Todd is the Vice President for Aerospace and Defense Strategy at Siemens Digital Industry Software. With over 30 years of experience in the Aerospace and Defense industry, Todd has a strong background in systems design and program leadership. He has expertise in various aspects of A&D programs, including model-based systems engineering, software engineering, and program management. Todd is a passionate advocate for digital transformation in the A&D industry. Before joining Siemens, he held positions at Raytheon Missiles and Defense and Moog Aircraft, where he led development programs for flight control systems.

Take a listen to a previous episode of the Engineer Innovation Podcast: Engineer Innovation Podcast: Engineering Evolution: Nature-Inspired Solutions with Mark Price on Apple Podcast

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Engineer Innovation Podcast

A podcast series for engineers by engineers, Engineer Innovation focuses on how simulation and testing can help you drive innovation into your products and deliver the products of tomorrow, today.

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This article first appeared on the Siemens Digital Industries Software blog at https://blogs.sw.siemens.com/podcasts/engineer-innovation/failure-is-not-an-option-digital-transformation-in-mission-assurance/