On April 11, 2017, the Office of the Chief Engineer (OCE) announced the selections for the 2017 Program and Project Management Excellence Award (PMEA), among which appears the CNES Jason-3 team in the Program and Project Management (PPM) Best Practices Application Category.
Jason-3, a joint mission carried out by CNES, Eurmetsat, NASA/JPL and NOAA, is the fifth in a series of space-based altimetry missions designed to provide critical ocean surface topography measurements, and the third in the French-U.S. Jason family of altimetry satellites extending the time-series of ocean surface height data information. Jason-3 assures vital continuity of the ocean data record in the current context of global warming until at least 2020, while also developing operational services. Like its predecessors, it operates in a highly inclined 1,336-km orbit from which it covers 95% of the globe’s ice-free oceans every 10 days.
The examination board, which evaluated projects on their demonstration of verifiable contributions utilizing recognized best practices, and advancing the art and science of PPM, commented close collaborations established by the Jason-3 team with multiple international and US partners that enabled joint engineering and analysis to develop risk informed solutions. Through a proactive risk reduction and management approach the team was able to overcome unforeseen launch delays and budget constraints. The proactive approach of the Jason-3 team is an exemplary model for multiple partners working together as an efficient unified project focused on common goals to deliver a successful mission.