Space Logistics

From terrestrial logistics to interplanetary supply chains

When it comes to space, logistics is currently mainly concerned with the area of To-Space Logistics (TSL). TSL supports and supplies space companies with all the necessary services and equipment from planning to launch. It also transports goods and people into space.

The topic of space logistics now addresses another area that will become increasingly important in the coming years: "in-space logistics" (ISL). Orbital logistics (low earth orbit/medium earth orbit/geostationary orbit) as well as planetary and interplanetary logistics are moving centre stage. With its expertise in terrestrial logistics and supply chain management, space logistics can transfer existing knowledge and proven processes to the new area of space.

From the space economy to space logistics

The space economy is developing rapidly. Numerous innovations are planned by 2040, including the construction of new space stations, the building of a "lunar gateway" and the development and expansion of infrastructure on the moon and Mars. This will require fully-fledged supply chains in space, covering the areas of procurement, storage, delivery, assembly, maintenance and disposal. In-space manufacturing and in-space logistics (ISL) will play a decisive role in this.. 

Central questions of in-space logistics

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• How can supply and disposal within the production process be sensibly organised for interplanetary and circular supply chain management, taking into account in-situ resource utilisation?

• How can the storage of materials and resources required for production in space be organised?

• How can concrete experimental fields for modelling extraterrestrial supply chains be designed (e.g. simulation and metaverse developments)?

• How can the safe production of infrastructures (such as satellites, rockets, etc.) and the underlying components be made verifiable?

• What do financing solutions for the realisation of interplanetary supply chains look like? (Asset Finance)

In-Space Logistics: Possible requirements and recommendations

The space environment poses special challenges. Space logistics offers a transfer of existing knowledge and best practices from terrestrial logistics and supply chain management to this new environment. All technologies available for terrestrial supply chains are utilised. These include the Internet of Things (IoT), sensors, robots, artificial intelligence (AI) and blockchain technologies.


... of the design and components to simplify transport and assembly

Flexibility and adaptability

... of the design and work processes


... by optimising the use of energy, fuel and space


... in terms of vehicles and interfaces


... of interfaces, components, etc.


... in the absence of humans