Introduction to Spacecraft Technology
This Module is offered by Chair of Astronautics (Prof. Walter).
This module handbook serves to describe contents, learning outcome, methods and examination type as well as linking to current dates for courses and module examination in the respective
MW1979 is a semester module
in English language
at Master’s level
which is offered in winter semester.
This Module is included in the following catalogues within the study programs in physics.
- Catalogue of non-physics elective courses
|Total workload||Contact hours||Credits (ECTS)|
The course provides knowledge of the fundamentals of Rocketry: Rocket Equation; Rocket Staging; Rocket Propulsion (chemical and electrical); Launcher Systems; Space Environment; Rocket Ascent; Astrodynamics; Trajectories; Orbit Transfers
After the successful conclusion of the module, the students are able to apply the basic physics of rocketry and propulsion to carry out a first order desing of a launcher system with respect to the design budgets of mass, power and volume. The students are able to analyse the complexity and the limitations of launching space craft systems and payloads into orbit. Furthermore, the students are able to apply the basic theory of astronautics, especially that of orbital trajectories and transfer maneuvers, with respect to the space craft's propulsion efficiency and the mission time. In general, the students are able to evaluate typical baseline launcher concepts and mission concepts with respect to the typical trade-offs in rocketry, namely mass and power.
Student has to be registered in ESPACE Double Degree Program and spend the 5th semester at Wuhan University.
Courses and Schedule
Learning and Teaching Methods
In the lecture, the topics are taught with the help of presentations and black board sketches. The accompanying tutorials repeat and engross the crucial topics. With the help of rough calculations and rule of thumb methods, the studens lern how to do first order system evaluations.
lecture, presentation, powerpoint assistance, hand-outs, black board
Lecture notes; U.Walter, Astronautics, Wiley-VCH, ISBN 3-527-40685-9;
Further literature survey is given in the hand-out
Description of exams and course work
The module Introduction to Satellite Technology coveres the theory and physics of rocketry and astronautics. The evaluating and analytical command of this expertise cluster is a fundamental prerequisite for the professional qualification of an academically educated rocket engineer. To proof the learning achievement of this study cluster, the students have to pass a written exam pressed for time. The exam comprises typically 20 tasks, which are short questions as well as calculation problems with a partitioning of about 50% to 50%. To work on the exam, the students are provided with a formulary; besides a non-programmable calculator, no further auxiliary material is allowed.
There is a possibility to take the exam in the following semester.