ESTL Space Tribology Course (STC)

For 2017, ESTL (the European Space Tribology Laboratory) presents a new one-day version of its highly respected Space Tribology Course.  This training course will be held on Monday 18th September 2017 at the de Havilland campus of the University of Hertfordshire in Hatfield, UK.

Delegates on the Space Tribology Course can therefore choose whether to also attend ESA’s Advanced Mechanisms course on Tuesday 19th September 2017 and/or the 17th European Space Mechanisms and Tribology Symposium (ESMATS) hosted by Airbus Defence & Space on Wednesday 20th to Friday 22nd September 2017. All three events are separately organised but are to be held in the same venue.

The Space Tribology Course provides a comprehensive overview of the many issues relating to friction, lubrication and wear of spacecraft mechanisms and their components and draws from data generated from ESTL’s 45 years as Europe’s independent centre of excellence for space tribology.

The course will cover the following subjects:

  • Fundamentals of Tribology – in which tribological concepts are introduced and the special considerations for space and vacuum tribology highlighted.
  • Tribo-component Design and Performance – in which an overview of the different types, characteristics and performances of tribo-components (ball bearings, gears, plain and ball/rollerscrews, etc.) used in spacecraft applications is provided. This includes a detailed presentation of considerations for design, selection and load capacity verification of ball bearings for space applications.
  • Materials for Tribo-Contacts – in which an overview of the main categories of materials and their use in spacecraft tribo-components and surfaces is presented.
  • Lubrication of Spacecraft Components – in which the application-driven considerations for selection of fluid or dry (solid) lubricants for tribo-components and surfaces are provided. This part includes the considerations and typical performances of dry (solid) and fluid lubricants, respectively. Some practical issues concerning application, handling and preloading of ball bearings and testing of mechanisms where tribological performance is critical are also presented.
  • Lessons Learned – presenting a selection of the (sometimes painful!) lessons learned on various programmes. The course is presented by experienced staff from ESTL with over 50+ combined years of space tribological experience and will be valuable both for younger engineers entering the industry and for the more experienced who may wish to refresh or challenge their tribological understanding.

Attendees will receive:

  • Paper and electronic format copies of the presentation slides
  • A pdf format copy of the latest issue of our ‘Space Tribology Handbook’
  • A pdf of ‘Guidelines for Space Mechanism Ball Bearing Design, Assembly and Preloading’

Registration and Fees:

Delegates will be able to register for this one day course on the ESMATS web site when the registration page opens. The fee to attend this course is £400 (four hundred pounds) plus VAT (currently 20%). Coffee breaks and lunch will be provided but delegates should organise their own travel and accommodation.

Note that the Space Tribology Course is not part of ESMATS 2017 or ESA’s Advanced Mechanism course, and delegates wishing to attend these events should register and pay the fees separately.

For further information contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., telephone +44 (0)1925 843499

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