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Space Systems Engineer, Alessandro Golkar is Associate Professor at the Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology (Skoltech), an international research university in Moscow, Russia, founded in 2011 in collaboration with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). From April 2017-2019, Alessandro Golkar was on leave from Skoltech as Vice President Concurrent Engineering, part of the Leadership Team of Technology Planning and Roadmapping at the Airbus Corporate Technology Office (CTO) in Toulouse, France. His research looks at new ways for looking at complex systems architecting problems, understanding the evolution of technology, and developing research and demonstrators of novel space mission concepts and spacecraft payload systems.

He pursued his Ph.D. in Aeronautics and Astronautics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and Master’s and Bachelor’s degrees in aerospace engineering at Università di Roma “La Sapienza”.

Academic Positions

  • Present2016

    Associate Professor

    Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology, Space Center

  • 20162012

    Assistant Professor

    Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology, Space Center

  • Present2017

    Chercheur Associé


  • Present2017

    Visiting Professor

    Universitat Politecnica de Catalunya

Other Professional Positions

  • Present2019

    Technology Development Director

    Skoltech Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation

  • 20192017

    Vice President Concurrent Engineering

    Airbus CTO

  • 20172016

    Interim Director

    Skoltech Space Center

  • 20162014

    Associate Director

    Skoltech Space Center

Education & Training

  • Ph.D. 2012

    Ph.D. in Aeronautics and Astronautics

    Massachusetts Institute of Technology

  • M.Sc. 2008

    Master's Degree in Astronautical Engineering

    Università di Roma ``La Sapienza``

  • B.Sc. 2006

    Bachelor's Degree in Aerospace Engineering

    Università di Roma ``La Sapienza``

Honors and Awards

  • 2018
    IEEE Senior Member
  • 2017
    Overall Winner Copernicus Masters Award
    The Copernicus Masters is an international competition that awards prizes to innovative solutions, developments and ideas for business and society based on Earth observation data.
  • 2017
    Winner, ESA Sentinel Small Satellite (S^3) Challenge
    The goal of the ESA S^3 Challenge was to obtain “out-of-the-box” ideas  for the benefit of the commercial use of EO data, by anticipating disruptive changes to current market conditions and technologies. The Award provided 1 Million EUR for the development of the FSSCAT Mission, to be flown on the Maiden Flight of Vega SSMS in 2019.
  • 2016
    Top 10 Paper SECESA 2016
  • 2015
    Junior Fellow, Aspen Institute Italia
    The Aspen Junior Fellows are an international network of young and potential future leaders. Set up in 2002, to lend strength and continuity to a project launched in 1999 – Aspen for a New Leadership – the group now counts 80 members, from Italy and abroad. The Aspen Junior Fellows work in many different sectors including business, academia, research, local government, media and the arts.

    A Junior Fellow must be nominated by an Institute Board Member to join the group: Aspen Junior Fellows must be between 25 and 33 years of age and meet certain other requirements. Membership lasts five years at most and must be forfeited once a member has turned 35.

  • 2015
    AIAA Senior Member
  • 2015
    Premio Italia Giovane
  • 2015
    Top Performer Award, Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology
  • 2015
    Best Journal Paper of the Year, INCOSE Systems Engineering
  • 2014
    Luigi G. Napolitano Award, International Astronautical Federation
    The Luigi G. Napolitano Award is presented annually by the Space Education and Outreach Committee (SEOC) of the International Astronautical Federation to a young scientist, below 30 years of age, who has contributed significantly to the advancement of the aerospace science and has given a paper at the International Astronautical Congress on the contribution.
  • 2012
    Top 3 PhD Research, MIT AeroAstro Research Competition