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In this series of mini-interviews, some of our people who are making a significant contribution to the Ariane 6 upper stage tell us about their role in the program and how they feel about seeing the first upper stage roll out of the factory en route for testing and onwards towards the launch.
Max Reinhardt came to the company 11 years ago to work on space propulsion systems, but has always been strongly attracted to production processes. At the start of the Ariane 6 program six years ago he joined the small team taking on the important task of building the new factory for Ariane 6 upper stage production at ArianeGroup’s Bremen site.
What is your role in the Ariane 6 upper stage?
My main contribution has been the establishment of the series of assembly and test stands in the brand new facility at ArianeGroup in Bremen dedicated to Ariane 6 upper stage production.
As a member of the initial core team put in place to set up this ultra-modern Ariane 6 upper stage factory in Bremen, I was privileged to be fully part of the complete facility development process – from first ideas in our heads to drawing-board sketches right up to final construction of the entire building and its installations.
How do you feel about taking part in this exceptional program?
Seeing the first Ariane 6 upper stage taking shape in the hands of our experienced workers step by step through ‘my’ production stations gave me huge satisfaction after so many years of hard work. Inevitably with such a complex task, there were a few surprises along the way, but with committed teamwork we were able to solve them fast. You have to have a team – such a huge development is of course never achieved by a single person. I was so lucky to be part of a team with some extraordinary people. After this journey many of them are much more than work colleagues to me now – we are bound together by this enormous achievement we created together.
What are your goals for the future?
My dream for the coming years is to see our new factory accelerating up to full capacity producing 12 or more Ariane 6 upper stages per year. And of course to see in person a rocket launch of ‘our baby’ live in French Guiana.
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