News Details | 18-May-2011

NTU and German Aerospace Centre team up on aeronautical and space science technologies research

Nanyang Technological University (NTU) and the German Aerospace Centre (Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt e.V. or DLR) will be collaborating on joint research in satellites and guided navigation, remote sensing and signal processing, and unmanned aerial vehicles.

Recognising NTU’s strengths in aeronautical engineering and space science, DLR, the Federal Republic of Germany’s national research centre for aeronautics and space has chosen to partner NTU as part of its international strategy to expand its operations into Asia. DLR is the national body responsible for planning and implementing Germany’s space programme. 

“Aeronautics and space have made substantial contributions to the way we live today,” said Professor Freddy Boey, NTU’s Provost-Designate. “Aviation guarantees our global mobility, while satellites enable global communication, navigation and Earth observation.”

“NTU will contribute our research and development competencies and engineering expertise to assist in the joint research, development and design of advanced aeronautical and satellite systems and subsystems.”

“As part of DLR’s international strategy, we want to be aware of upcoming trends in this dynamic field and to be present in Asia,” said Professor Rolf Henke, Executive Board Member of DLR.

“In a study on potential locations for future DLR activities in Asia, Singapore emerged the most promising, and NTU seems to be the best match to DLR’s research and development focus on aeronautics, space, transportation and energy. By cooperating with NTU, we hope to work together to advance aeronautical and space science.”

Professor Boey and Professor Henke signed an agreement on 16 May 2011 at DLR’s Galileo Control Centre in Oberpfaffenhofen, Wessling, Germany, to seal this joint research collaboration. 

Under the agreement, both partners will also explore opportunities to conduct joint research activities in other areas such as electromobility, climate and earth observation, fuel cells, composite technologies, automated and augmented maintenance, repair and overhaul, and virtual aircraft certification and simulation.

To this end, there will be visit exchanges between NTU and DLR professors, researchers and students. 

This collaboration brings to new heights the existing partnership between NTU and DLR. In 2009, both parties agreed to conduct joint research in the field of global navigation satellite systems. In addition, one of the payloads carried by X-SAT, Singapore’s first satellite in space, is an advanced GPS receiver provided by DLR. The GPS receiver will collect specific navigation data for experiments.

X-SAT is an experimental satellite developed by NTU, in collaboration with DSO National Laboratories, to train its students and researchers in satellite engineering. Through it, and with the successful launch of the satellite on 20 April 2011, the university has established core competencies in satellite engineering research.

With one of the largest engineering colleges in the world, NTU is the only university in Singapore which offers an undergraduate degree programme in aerospace engineering. The four-year programme is designed to meet the demands of the aviation industry, which is technology-driven and requires highly skilled manpower.

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Edgar Lee 
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