Date Published: August 12, 2022
This summer, I interned at NASA’s Langley Research Center as a member of the Cloud-Aerosol Lidar and Infrared Pathfinder Satellite Observation (CALIPSO) mission operations team.
My mentor, Lucia Lee, is the ground system manager for payload operations. The CALIPSO satellite studies the structure of thin clouds and aerosols in order to shine a light on their impacts on weather and climate. CALIPSO is a joint mission between the French Centre National D’Etudes Spatiales (CNES) space agency, which manages the satellite platform, and NASA, which manages the science payload.
I worked on two projects in support of the CALIPSO mission: I helped migrate the project’s document archive to a new platform under a new organizational schema, and I tested the payload ground system software (GSSW) to ensure that the GSSW and its support software functioned correctly on new hardware and updated support software. I was successful in both endeavors: I migrated 1,000+ documents to the new archive platform, and completed a thorough testing of the GSSW, which is now in production and being used to process real data from CALIPSO.
During my internship, I gained valuable insights into the management of a long-term project (23+ years) and learned that keeping such a project organized is a project in itself. I also learned how to perform software integration testing, and I honed the time management and communication skills which are essential to any work environment.
I came into this internship with a plan for my future: complete my undergraduate studies in aerospace engineering, earn a master’s degree in another field to broaden my education, then work in Mission Control at NASA’s Johnson Space Center. This plan has not changed, but rather my experience this summer has deepened my conviction that this is a path I want to follow.
To hear more about what I did this summer, take a look at my presentation about it!
The views and opinions expressed in my blog are my own and do not necessarily reflect those of NASA. No official endorsement is intended or implied.
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