As a subsidiary of the European leader in access to space ArianeGroup, Sodern’s core business is the series production of star trackers that enable satellites to orient themselves precisely in space. To consolidate its position as a world leader in optronics and neutron technology,  Sodern had to be able to effectively control projects, track defects and manage source code. The company choose Tuleap for its capabilities as well its Open Source aspect.

sodern teams space


Providing teams with a powerful solution to develop cutting-edge software space products, while ensuring no vendor lock-in


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✔ Results

  • All projects are now managed from a single solution
  • Quality and efficiency objectives achieved thanks to a more modern and easier to use application.
  • All project stakeholders can access tickets and collaborative workspaces.

With Tuleap, we get the best of both worlds: no vendor lock-in with Open Source and business support.

PY Bretecher, Head of Software Engineering Dpt, Sodern

Increased collaboration

Project stakeholders collaborate more efficiently during software projects lifecycle

improved development workflow

Software teams improved their development workflow and made it more efficient

Future-proof solution with pro services

Tuleap offer made of Enterprise Open Source along with SLA, make possible to benefit from the best of two worlds

The challenge: setting up a sustainable environment to manage very long-term software projects

In order to compete globally and build innovative quality products, companies in the space industry as Sodern know they must deploy a solution that meet their unique needs and support the long-term and large-scale projects typical of the industry. 

The importance of Quality in the Aviation, Space and Defense industry

Called a “key actor” of national defense by French minister Jean-Yves Le Drian, Sodern develops and produces the neutron sources for the French nuclear force, part of the payloads of the French military satellites dedicated to Earth observation , GPS-free positioning systems, etc. Sodern’ activities cover several ranges of space instruments (instruments for satellite attitude control, instruments for Earth observation, unique scientific instruments created on demand and integrated aboard satellites, space stations and space vehicle) as well as Stars Trackers.

Quality is paramount to companies in the aviation, space and defense industries. A company as Sodern in the newly emerging space market has to rely on a quality ALM solution to deliver robust products and applications.

The importance of Sustainability & Open Source

Due to the unique nature of Sodern’s business, the company cannot afford to become dependent on any software vendor or technology.
It is important to notice that the ability to see the source code of a tool is not the same as the ability to modify a deployed software in production. This is possible only with an Open Source licence, not with a propriety tool, not with an open core tool.

Some of the applications we develop ends up on satellites for missions that can last two decades. Our development and maintenance timeline can be 25 years or more. For us, a license tying us to a particular vendor exposes us to an unacceptable risk — that the vendor will go out of business and the source code will disappear.

Pierre-Yves Bretecher, Head of Electronics and Software Engineering Department, Sodern

Why did Sodern choose Tuleap Enterprise?

An integrated Application Lifecycle Management platform

Sodern needed to empower its teams with an integrated, collaborative platform to manage development through requirements management, planning, software development, and defect tracking- all in one platform. They assessed that Tuleap will provide all their project stakeholders with a single source of truth. They understood how Tuleap will help them closely track all project components and promote collaboration between project managers, engineers, developers, integrators, maintainers.

Enterprise Open Source

For Sodern, the Open Source aspect was a key criterion. But choosing an Open Source product does not mean starting on their own, without professional support. Sodern requirement was: Enterprise Open Source, meaning having a professional team that offer support and Service Level Agreements (SLAs), to receive fast expertise and issue resolution.

Sodern developers are very skilled people, but maintaining an ALM solution is not their core business. Our development teams have to focus on building the lasted-generation space instrumentation

Our innovative projects are critical. We needed an Open Source tool with business guarantees; we needed fast and personalized help when we need it.
Today, I have to say I am a very satisfied customer. Each time, I am amazed by the ability of the Tuleap Support team to provide us with the right solution, remotely and without having access to our server (given our security rules). This shows that they have a very good knowledge of their Tuleap product.

How did Sodern improve its software development process?

Tuleap provided Sodern development teams with a right ALM tooling to support work without disrupting existing practices. It enabled all stakeholders to collaborate more efficiently in managing projects, issue tracking and software code. They can release quality products : Earth observation instruments as well as in scientific technologies embedded for both civil and military space programs.

Enhance real-time collaboration along the entire project life

With Tuleap, Sodern removed all barriers of teamwork by sharing project information, data, and quality in one central platform.

Tuleap is designed both for developers and non-technical people, as project managers, who don’t necessarily have advanced software development knowledge. With Tuleap, everyone at Sodern can get a comprehensive overview of projects status. We can adjust priorities and replan activities.

Improved development workflow

Development teams at Sodern enhanced their software development process implementing change management, source code versioning and good practices for project monitoring. They rely on Tuleap Tracking tool to manage tasks and sub-tasks, capture bugs and change requests. Connecting issues to code managed with Git, teams get instant visibility into their development pipeline.

Tuleap’s tracking tool? There is nothing more powerful!

Ensure lifecycle traceability 

Tuleap automatically records the full change history on items. Thus, Sodern’s teams can easily track tasks, bugs, and change requests: everything is automatically cross-referenced. Developers can also access the full range of Tuleap’s particularly agile features right from the Eclipse development environment. No more back-and-forth between the two interfaces.

Learn more about Tuleap in the aerospace industry

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