New Payload Course Now in SATERN

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Recently, the Expendable Launch Vehicle (ELV) Payload Safety Program released a new course “Safety Guidance for Payloads” (SMA-HQ-WBT-104) to the agency in SATERN. The course focuses on ensuring a consistent level of safety for special-case ELV payloads, which are payloads that either 1) don’t use the Launch Services Program or 2) rideshare with a primary payload on an ELV.

“This course provides guidance for those involved with payload safety and the associated review documents,” explained Cal Staubus, ELV Payload Safety Program manager.

The course provides payload safety guidance for NASA payloads launched on a noncrewed ELV into orbit and those that do not interface with the International Space Station. The course supplements existing ELV payload safety courses “NASA ELV Payload Safety Program: Overview of NPR 8715.7” (SMA-070-01) and “Expendable Launch Vehicle Payload Safety Requirements” (SMA-HQ-WBT-206).

The online course includes overviews of

  • Applicable documents for requirements and processes
  • Flexible tailoring 
  • Focused application for some small missions that have few hazards

“Safety Guidance for Payloads” emphasizes that all ELV payload project managers, including those managing special-case payloads, are to contact the ELV Payload Safety Program manager when mission planning begins. Additionally, the course covers that the Safety and Mission Assurance Technical Authority for the payload program or project must work with his or her project and the ELV Payload Safety Program manager to determine an appropriate safety approach for the project.  

Who Should Take This Course

Payload project managers, safety engineers involved with ELV payloads, system engineers, System Safety engineers, launch vehicle safety engineers and other safety personnel should take this course.

“By knowing and understanding payload hazards as well as proper safety design and processes, we can protect NASA personnel and resources from harm,” said Staubus.

Anyone with questions on the course should contact Staubus.