MSS18 Internship stories: Vincent Delayat reports from PTScientists, Germany


“Since the beginning of June 2018, I have been working as an intern in a private space company called PTScientists GmbH in Berlin, Germany. Another start-up which counts several ISU alumni!” reports ISU Master of Space Studies (MSS18) student Vincent Delayat.

“The company began in late 2008 when Robert Boehme brought together a small group of engineers and developers, the “Part-Time Scientists” to enter the Google Lunar XPRIZE. A lot has happened since then, and the company now employs over fifty people full-time and is working with key partners like Audi and Vodafone on its mission.

PTScientists aims to launch "Mission to the Moon" by the end of 2019, and return to the Taurus-Littrow Valley, the location of the final Apollo mission. Mission to the Moon consists of a spacecraft and lander (ALINA) and two Audi lunar quattro rovers. Both the lander and the rovers can carry customer payloads to the surface of the Moon.

The company’s motto is "Space belongs to everyone", and this is reflected in the international team which gathers people from very diverse backgrounds.

The first mission, called “Mission to the Moon”, is a technological demonstration of the company’s hardware and technology capabilities. PTScientists aims to become a trusted lunar infrastructure provider, offering transportation, end-to-end payload delivery services, navigation, and a lunar communication network.

I have a strong engineering background in mechatronics, but my internship experience is giving me the opportunity to test and develop other skills gained at ISU, especially in business development.

My role in the team is payload manager, liaising with customers and partners on their specific needs, and ensuring that we can accommodate their payloads on the ALINA spacecraft. I am an important point of contact for payload customers and the engineering team as it is essential that everyone has accurate information.

I am very happy that PTScientists trusted me right from the start of my time here. My role is key for Mission to the Moon, and I have already given a talk and represented the company at several events, such as the Singularity University Summit, the Education First Summit, and Idealab.

I hope that I can be part of the team representing PTScientists at the International Astronautical Congress (IAC) in Bremen later this year, and perhaps attend the Moon Village Association event in Los Angeles. I would like to continue as part of Mission to the Moon until the end, even after my internship ends.

In my free time, I enjoy the beautiful city of Berlin and its unique history, and I am taking German lessons. Even though I don't speak fluent German yet, I have no difficulty communicating, whether at work or in my free time.

PTScientists has close links with ISU since several team members are ISU alumni. Among others my supervisor Torsten Kriening, who passed ISU’s Executive MBA in 2012. PTScientists representatives were present at the ISU Open Day in March 2018 and speaking to them in person really helped with my application for this internship.”

Photo Credit: PTScientists - Vincent Delayat at PTScientists with Lunar Rover