22nd October – Lunchtime Lecture: BepiColombo by Peter Randall (QinetiQ)

The RAeS Boscombe Down Branch invites you to attend the following Lunchtime Lecture: BepiColombo by Peter Randall (QinetiQ)

22nd October 2019


BepiColombo is a joint European/Japanese mission to explore the innermost planet Mercury. Mercury still holds many mysteries and is one of the least explored planets. BepiColombo comprises two orbiters that will spend a year mapping Mercury in detail plus a dedicated propulsion module. Due to Mercury’s proximity to the Sun it poses great challenges to spacecraft design, not just to withstand the intense heat but also to resist the strong gravitational pull of the Sun to reach Mercury. BepiColombi is the first planetary mission to use ion thrusters as the primary propulsion source, designed and built by QinetiQ. This lecture will give an overview of the mission, explain the novel technology of the propulsion system, and describe QinetiQ’s role in the development, testing and operation of the spacecraft.


Peter Randall has worked at QinetiQ and its predecessors for 32 years, based at Farnborough. He spent over 20 years engaged in electro-optic systems research, working on many UK aircraft programmes. He then joined Space Department and for the last 9 years has worked on the BepiColombo project. He is the lead systems engineer for the Solar Electric Propulsion System.

Lower Ante Room, Officers’ Mess
MOD Boscombe Down
12:00 – Lecture Starts
13:00 – Lecture Finishes

Are you pursuing CEng, IEng or EngTech status? Attendance at our lectures will help you meet your CPD requirements, and certificates of attendance will be provided!

Visitors Welcome – you do not need to be a member of the Branch, nor a member of the Royal Aeronautical Society, to attend. For further details, explore the Branch website.

External members or members without a security pass will need to declare their intention to attend this lecture through contacting us at boscombedown@aerosociety.com
by Friday prior to the lecture.

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