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Space Technologies

14:30 - 16:30

Technology is a key element that will enable and ease future space missions. This session will address three major aspects: robotic space programmes including Artificial Intelligence, miniaturization of technology in the context of CubeSat, as well as the fragmentation and federation of satellites to achieve high level mission objectives.


What can be achieved today with CubeSats? What are the current trends?

Is there room for Artificial Intelligence in Space?

This session will interactively discuss these elements and will bring insight on potential job market development.


Introduction of the session

Michael François, Instrument Manager Earth Observation Satellites, ESA 


Humans and robots in space: a fruitful collaboration

Jeremi Gancet, Division Manager,
Space Applications Services



Jean-Marc Defise, Head of Business Line Space, AMOS


Newspace Challenges

Alain van Esbeen, R&D Business Development
Manager, Thales Alenia Space


Nanosatellites: Let’s reach space together!

The Cubesat Revolution

Serge Habraken, Professor, ULG

16:00 – 16:30

Q&A and Panel discussion


Michael François

Michael hold a Master in electro-mechanical engineering from University of Louvain-La-Neuve and has been active in space since 20 years. After 8 years working in Belgian space industries dealing with communication systems for low earth orbit satellites, space station payloads development or GPS/Galileo high precision receiver development, he joined the European Space Agency Technology Center (ESA/ESTEC) as project controller for small technology mission developments, in particular the first accurate dual spacecraft formation flying mission. He moved then to optical instrument development management for earth observation missions. He was in charge of the Vegetation payload on board the PROBA-V satellite developed by a Belgian industrial consortium and launched in 2013 or the development of a compact hyperspectral payload for small satellite. He is currently managing the development of the FLORIS instrument on board the FLEX mission, a world premiere complex optical instrument to quantify the photosynthesis activity from the vegetation by observing the photo induced fluorescence.

Instrument Manager Earth Observation Satellites, ESA

Jeremi Gancet

Dr. Jeremi Gancet is Technologies, Applications and Research Division Manager at Space Applications Services. After receiving a MSc (2001) in computer science from the Université Laval, Quebec, Canada, and a PhD (2005) in Robotics and Artificial Intelligence from the National Polytechnical Institute of Toulouse (working with the Laboratoire d’Analyse et d’Architecture des Systèmes (LAAS)), he joined Space Applications Services in 2005, where he took the lead of the robotics team for almost 10 years. He managed a number of ESA and EC H2020 funded projects, and is coordinating several of them.

Division Manager, Space Applications Services

Alain van Esbeen

Ir. Alain Van Esbeen is Business Development Manager at Thales Alenia Space in Charleroi, focussing on funding Research and Development activities through regional, federal and European contracts.

He is also Product Line Manager for Microelectronics and MicroProducts implementing digital solutions in breakthrough satellites products.  His experience is covering hardware and software development, program and bid management in ground telecom, defense and satellites areas. He also leads the development, qualification and commercialization of a breakthrough radiation hardened microcontroller, the DPC ( Digital Programmable Controller) whose design was successfully performed in Belgium.     

R&D Business Development Manager, Thales Alenia Space

Jean-Marc Defise

After a MSc in Physics Engineering and a PhD at ULiege, Jean-Marc Defise worked at the Centre Spatial de Liège as Project Manager and then Programme Manager for space science instruments with participation to the payloads of SOHO, COROT, INTEGRAL, XMM-Newton, STEREO, PROBA2, etc. He then worked for Thales Alenia Space Belgium as Programme Manager for flight equipment for electrical propulsion. SInce 2017, he is Project Manager and Head of Business Line Space at AMOS, currently participating to MTG, Sentinel, Euclid, METimage, etc.

Head of Business Line Space, AMOS

Serge Habraken

Serge received a PhD diploma in Physics in 1995. He started to work at the Centre Spatial de Liege (CSL) as optical engineer and was involved in many space optical instrumentations. From 2005, Serge is Professor at the University of Liege and teaches mainly optics at basic to advanced levels. From 2016, Serge is the Scientific and Academic Director of CSL. He is also managing the Space Scientific Instrumentation Program.

Professor, ULG

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