Mission Operations Department

The Mission Operations department fulfills the project related operational tasks associated with human spaceflight and satellite missions.

The main tasks include the planning and preparation of projects, the definition of ground system requirements, mission planning, the generation of flight operation procedures as well as the preparation and conduction of necessary tests, trainings and simulations.

The actual mission comprises Launch and Early Orbit Phase (LEOP) and a subsequent Commissioning and a so-called Routine Phase. Professional preparation is required for a safe LEOP and the transition into the Routine Phase. The Mission Operations department also represents DLR and GSOC externally, dealing directly with the customers while being supported by other GSOC departments.

Mission Operations also plays a major role in the preparation and execution of satellite operations. Safety and success of space flight missions is based on a reliable, cost-efficient and flexible Mission Operations System. The concept of Multi-Mission Operations at GSOC allows for efficient operation by harmonizing the tasks in the different projects. Therefore, capacity fluctuations are minimized and superfluous developments can be avoided.


  • Mission operations are prepared for
    • Satellite missions for earth observation and science
    • Satellite missions for communication and security-related applications
    • Human space flight missions (ISS) in Low Earth Orbit – scientific and technology applications (research under microgravity conditions

  •  Training
    • Qualification of operations staff
    • Internships for university graduates
    • Spacecraft Operations Course for external interested parties

  • Networking
    • Organization and participation on national and international conferences and workshop (i.e. SpaceOps, SpaceOps 2012, HUDEP) 
    • Contributions to standardization boards (i.e. CCSDS, ECSS)
    • Contribution in studies

Topic of the groups



Dr. Andreas Ohndorf

Head of Department
German Aerospace Center (DLR)
Space Operations and Astronaut Training
Mission Operations
Münchner Straße 20, 82234 Oberpfaffenhofen-Wessling