Juerg Frefel

Juerg brings close to 20 years of engineering leadership experience in safety critical systems for aerospace and medical applications. Prior to co-founding Reliable Robotics, Juerg led the Compute Platforms Development team at SpaceX, building the core avionics systems that powered the Falcon 9 and Dragon spacecraft.

His technical background, experience driving and mentoring high performing teams to build new platforms for space exploration and deep curiosity about how autonomy could impact aviation led him to co-found Reliable Robotics. The company is on a mission to create safe, certified autonomous flight systems to enable more cargo and more passengers to travel to more places, more efficiently than ever before.

At SpaceX, Juerg was responsible for developing the platforms that powered important SpaceX missions. He led a team of 40 hardware design engineers, radio communications engineers and printed circuit board designers to build the flight computers, subsystem controllers, motor drivers, communications systems, high speed data acquisition systems and GPS receivers that went on the Falcon 9 launch vehicle and Dragon spacecraft.

Juerg architected and oversaw the designs for the Falcon 1.1 avionics overhaul. He also developed multiple subsystem controllers and the solar array driver for the first Dragon spacecraft. His vital work on the Crew Dragon vehicle to bring U.S. astronauts back to the International Space Station included the development of multiple main flight computers, crew displays, docking controller, navigation, emergency escape, and vehicle control subsystems. Juerg managed over two dozen flight critical designs to successful completion.

Prior to SpaceX, Juerg worked at Aveox Inc. where he developed power electronics and embedded systems controllers for commercial aircraft including the Boeing 787 and Airbus A380. He also designed and built multiple highly reliable and efficient platforms for applications in industrial automation, surgical devices, and unmanned military systems.

Juerg earned a B.S. in Electrical Engineering with a Specialization in Software Engineering and Embedded Systems from Winterthur Polytechnic School of Engineering in Switzerland. Prior to that, he completed an Electronics apprenticeship from MSW Winterthur.