working group logoThe HERMES Spaceplane was to be Europe’s vehicle for carrying astronauts into space. This ambitious project initiated by CNES in the early 1980s, and then taken over by ESA encountered unforeseen difficulties, such as the Challenger Space Shuttle accident, forcing new safety features, which became hurdles that could not easily be overcome. The project was finally abandoned in 1992. The HERMES Spaceplane Cockpit Working Group was dedicated to reviewing and contributing expertise towards the development of the cockpit from the human factors aspect. The working group comprised a number of experienced astronauts from Apollo/ Skylab, Franco-Soviet, and Shuttle missions. Additional experts included a small team from OHB-System, of which Dr Kass was part, who managed the WG.