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Meet the Team

TEAM – Together Everyone Achieves More

The aim of building a rocket requires an ensemble of people with different skillsets, eager for developing a high-tech product. Here at ASTRA, we have a Team consisting of more than 30 people, all equally fascinated about space and dedicated to our shared goal of becoming the first European group to build a rocket that reaches space. Our members participate in different working groups, each dealing with another technical aspect of Project Karman. In the following sections, these teams and their work have been introduced.

Project Management Team

The Project Management Team coordinates the workflow of Project Karman and organises the cooperation between the different working groups. Furthermore, all organisational affairs fall into their remit. Currently, seven Members are working in the Project Management Team, they are introduced in the following.

From left to right: Jesaiah Coy (Chief Engineer), Pradyumna Koushik (Mission Management), Lotta Dräger (Project Management), Mika Bauerfeind (Project Management), Saurabh Balchhatri (Project Lead), Prasanraj Sivaraj (Fundraising Manager), Vishal Avhad (Mission Management).

Missing here are Sahana Shastry (Operations & Testing Lead) and Dexter Ndhlovu (Marketing).

Structure Team

During the flight of a rocket, different forces act on the body of the launcher. Therefore, it must be secured that the resulting loads do not damage the rocket. The structure team accomplishes this task with the help of various tests and simulations. The structure team consists of the following four members.

  • Biswajeet Pradhan (Team Lead)
  • Kaja Mohideen Nabeel Ahamed
  • Vatsal Zaveri
  • Tarun Susanth Sripathi

Propulsion Team

The correct design of the propulsion system is one of the most crucial tasks when building a rocket. The propellant must develop the needed thrust to lift up the launcher to the required altitude, but it must also be as light as possible to reduce the weight of the rocket to a minimum. Our propulsion team deals with all these questions and currently consists of the following seven members.

  • Taha Merchant (Team Lead)
  • Rahul Konakanchi
  • Rajesh Cheriyala
  • Brian Holt
  • Manjinder Singh
  • Shaurya Bharadwaj
  • Lorenz Marhenke
  • Shalvin Biju

Aerodynamics Team

Another important design aspect of a rocket is its aerodynamic profile, which is responsible for distributing the acting forces over the body. The body must generate the fitting values for uplift and drag to ensure the desired flight quality. Our aerodynamics team designs models of the rocket and tests them prior to the final assembly and integration process. Currently, our aerodynamics team has five members and they are introduced in the following section.

  • David Jaramillo Restrepo (Team Lead)
  • Shahul Dudekula
  • Saikat Pradhan
  • Sheren Natasya Setiadji
  • Liya Cicily Lalu

Avionics Team

Another working group that is active in the current design phase is our avionics team. This team takes care of the whole electrical engineering on board our rocket. Take, for instance, our payload that will verify if we reach the desired altitude of 100 km. Another field of work for this group is the tracking and monitoring of the rocket and its subsystems. Currently, the following eleven members are working on the avionics in Project Karman, making it the biggest group within ASTRA.

  • Eenesh Chavan (Team Lead)
  • Dhruv Patel
  • Philip Lagemann
  • Amit Barthwal
  • Shridhara Gangaraju
  • Hashir Roshin Valiya Parambil
  • Shihab Pokkakkillath Muhammed
  • Hiril Patel
  • Leela Manishwar Goriparthi
  • Lotanna Arinze

Recovery Team

The last – but definitely not least – working subdivision of our team is the recovery department. This group takes care of – as the name implies – the recovery of our blackbox with the most important data. To accomplish this, the team designs a seperation mechanism to disjoin as well as a parachute for the final soft landing. Currently we have three working members in this group.

  • Arvit Zankl (Team Lead)
  • Lukas Erdmann

Did we pique your interest?

ASTRA is always looking for interested people who want to contribute to our projects. If you want to work with us, click on the button on the right!