Working as an instrument maker for space research

Take a look at our mechanical workshop in Groningen. Jarno Panman has been a precision instrument maker for SRON since 2002. His work and that of his colleagues consists of making hardware components.

For example, for (cryogenic) test set-ups for experiments that push the boundaries of our technology. And, of course, for groundbreaking space instruments, from the demonstration and qualification models to the final flight and spare models.

In this video, Jarno shows how a component of a cryogenic window for one of the test cryostats is created, through different design and production steps


“What I love about my work is that our missions and experiments constantly create new mechanical puzzles that we have to solve. What I like best is the technological research in which we look for solutions and results in a team with an instrumentmaker, scientist and designer. To develop and then actually make unique prototypes with a high level of difficulty, is fantastic.”


“I am very involved in my work, but at SRON I can also combine it very well with my family with two small children. You are very flexible, as long as you know the responsibility yourself. You know for yourself when the work allows you to do or not do something”.

Pleasant atmosphere

“At the Groningen lab, the scale is somewhat smaller, which means that all the different disciplines meet every day over a 10am coffee break. That gives a sense of belonging and a great informal atmosphere. A fine mix of different insights that complement each other. So working for us is not only interesting, it’s also a lot of fun”.