Boeing Frontiers
August 2002 
Volume 01, Issue 04 
Top Stories Inside Quick Takes Site Tools

Cool as ICE

The sky’s no limit for BSS Design Center


If two heads—working together—are better than one, then 14 or 15 are even better. If two heads—working together—are better than one, then 14 or 15 are even better.

That's at least part of the theory behind the Concurrent Integrated Engineering Lab, a new lab that functions as the gathering point of information for every satellite designed at Boeing Satellite Systems.

The concept of CIEL is simple: When you're designing a satellite, get everyone with a stake in the design in the same room at the same time, sharing the same information.

Created by the Design Center, where proposals for satellite designs are put together, CIEL combines best practices from inside and outside Boeing. The give-and-take of satellite design is facilitated by a California Institute of Technology-designed integration software package called Integrated Collaborative Engineering (ICE) Maker.

CIEL features several interconnected computer stations and working areas from which everyone in the lab can participate in designing the satellite. Also present are video projectors that give everyone in the room an overview of the satellite design.

"We're always looking for ways to reduce our costs and improve the quality of our designs," said Rob Vasquez, director of the Design Center. "And, with quality being the top priority at BSS, the Design Center's contribution to increased quality prior to contract signing is improving the design maturity, requirements, and definition of the baseline design."

To bring CIEL to BSS and get it up and running as quickly as possible, Vasquez enlisted a core group of people who trained and became experts on ICE.

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