Microcosm also offers unique technical courses covering “Space Mission Engineering,” “Reducing Space Mission Cost,” and key mission engineering technologies, and created the most widely used astronautics references in the world.  Microcosm has provided advanced mission engineering training to over 3000 professional and graduate student participants in the US, Canada, Europe, Asia and South America.  We can provide the training needed to enhance the efficiency of your organization.

Space Mission Engineering: The New SMAD – 5-day short course (38 instruction hours)

The original Space Mission Analysis and Design (SMAD) Course has been taught by Dr. James Wertz, the co-editor and principal author of the course book, for more than 15 years.

The new volume Space Mission Engineering: The New SMAD, has been published and the associated course captures what is new in space mission engineering. There are a number of new features never before available such as the web-based down-loadable Excel models so users can quickly and easily specialize the data to a mission or missions of interest to them.  In addition, there is a direct on-line link to each of the references in the volume — whether books or technical papers at AIAA, IEEE, or other organizations.

This is the most comprehensive space mission analysis course available and is taught by the instructor who has developed, collected, and codified much of the basic space mission engineering knowledge and approaches in use today.


Design of Low-Cost Space Missions – 5-day short course (38 instruction hours)

It is critical that we solve the combined problem of dramatically reducing cost and schedule while achieving high performance and much better resiliency, and lower risk. Based on the full semester graduate course he has taught for over a decade at the University of Southern California, Dr. Wertz, creator of much of the current interest in Responsive Space and Reinventing Space, takes you step-by-step through the complete process of creating dramatically lower cost, lower risk, quicker, and very capable space missions.  This course covers all of the material taught in the full 1-semester academic course, most recently presented as a televised for-credit course with participants from industry, DoD, and NASA centers throughout the US.  Relative to the shorter summary courses, it provides more in-depth assessment, more details, technologies, and processes applicable to each of the elements of a space mission (system, spacecraft, payload, launch, ground segment, and operations) and more extensive discussion of alternative approaches and problem solving.

For additional information about any of the courses, or to inquire about holding a course at your organization, or joining a public course at Microcosm, contact Julie Jackson at or 310-539-2306.