Georgia Tech Continues Legacy as Leading U.S.
Rotorcraft Center of Excellence
September 15, 2011 -- Georgia Institute of Technology has been designated a Rotorcraft Center of Excellence (RCOE) for the seventh consecutive time. The $7.2 million contract will fund the center for the next five years.
The RCOE has operated under different names since its creation in 1982. Presently known as the Vertical Lift Research Center of Excellence (VLRCOE), the current “center of excellence” designation was made by a panel of government and industry experts who comprise the government’s National Rotorcraft Technology Center. The VLRCOE carries out multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary research and education, focusing on advancing vertical lift technology, and works in close collaboration with the U.S. rotorcraft industry.
During the past decade, the RCOE has produced 82 PhD graduates. Students in the RCOE have a track record of excellence, winning first or second place in every graduate and undergraduate rotorcraft design competition sponsored by the American Helicopter Society International and the rotorcraft industry for the past 27 years.
“The impact and contributions of the center to our School of Aerospace Engineering and to Georgia Tech in general extends far beyond the more than $35 million in direct government funding provided over the past three decades,” said Daniel P. Schrage, rotorcraft design professor who has been the director of Georgia Tech RCOEs since 1986. “The center has served as a catalyst for expanding a number of our academic and research focus areas and has served as a positive force in the Georgia Tech’s distinction as one of the world’s leading aerospace engineering universities.”
The RCOE was Georgia Tech’s first externally designated center of excellence in 1982. Since that time, it has partnered with other world-famous vertical flight researchers from respected universities including the University of Michigan and University of Washington at St. Louis.
AE Teams Take Second and Third Places in 2010-2011
AIAA Undergrdauate Team Space Design Competition
August 29, 2011 -- AIAA FOUNDATION has announced the winners of 2010-2011 Undergraduate team space design competion. The first place went to U. Illinois, Urbana, Champaign. Georgia Tech Teams winning awards were:
Second Prize: “Team Zodiac,” The Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, Ga., for their design “ZODIAC: Zero-range Orbital Debris Inspection and Cleanup.” Prof. David Spencer, faculty adviser; Dr. Carlee Bishop, project advisor; and team members Eliot Bignell, Luis I. Reyes Castro, Azariah R. Cornish, Eric James Douglass, Caroline Hilton, Emre Tezcan, and Han Zhang. The team will receive an award of $1,500 from the AIAA Foundation.
Third Prize: “Team PACSat,” The Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, Ga., for their design “PACSat: Projectile Assessment and Capture Satellite.” Prof. David Spencer, faculty advisor; Dr. Carlee Bishop, project advisor; and team members Marco Gomez, Michael Hill, Matt Lee, M. Garrett Sisk, Alexandra Stavros, Eric Stuber, Conner Volpe. The team will receive an award of $1,000 from the AIAA Foundation.
NASA Space Technology Research Fellows
Aug 12, 2011 -- NASA has selected the inaugural class of Space Technology Research Fellows, and seven out of the 81 students are engineering students from the Georgia Institute of Technology.
Our congratulations to Chris Coen from the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering and Nicole Bauer, Matthew Bopp, Cole Kazemba, Demyan Lantukh, Mihir Pathak and Zach Putnam from the Daniel Guggenheim School of Aerospace Engineering.
The students will receive graduate student fellowships from NASA's Office of the Chief Technologist to pursue master's or doctoral degrees in relevant space technology disciplines at Tech. This first class of Space Technology Fellows is part of NASA's strategy to develop the technological foundation for its future science and exploration missions. The program's goal is to provide the nation with a pipeline of highly skilled engineers and technologists to improve U.S. competitiveness.
NASA Space Technology Fellows will perform innovative space technology research while building the skills necessary to become future technological leaders. Selected candidates will perform graduate student research on their respective campuses and at NASA centers and nonprofit U.S. research and development laboratories.
The awards include a stiped that ranges between $30,000 and $36,000, a faculty advisor allowance, on-site R&D lab experience allowance, health insurance and tuition.
ASDL Team wins AIAA Graduate Missile Design Competition
July 11, 2011-- A team of eight Aerospace Engineering graduate students from the Aerospace Systems Design Laboratory (ASDL) has been awarded first place in the 2010-2011 AIAA Graduate Missile Design competition, organized by the AIAA Missile Systems Technical Committee (MSTC). The team, led by Program Manager Scott Strong and Chief Engineer William Garrison, performed a complete design space exploration and conceptual design of a tactical missile system. This system was required to engage targets at ranges of at least 500 n.mi. in less than ten minutes demanding hypersonic flight speeds. The team analyzed design possibilities ranging from advanced air-breathing systems to traditional rocket configurations and determined that a three stage solid rocket ballistic missile was optimal. The final missile design, capable of launching from both naval ships and military aircraft, utilizes a boost-glide trajectory, carrying conventional payloads and reaching speeds in excess of Mach 6 upon impact. A total of three teams entered the competition, including Auburn University, Georgia Institute of Technology, and the Naval Post Graduate School. The team plans to present their results at the Joint Army, Navy, NASA, Air Force (JANNAF) conference held in Huntsville, AL later this year.
Prof. Dimitri Mavris - Faculty Advisor
Rebecca Douglas - Team Advisor
Bradford Roberston - Student Advisor
Jeremy Bennetch, Christopher Brenci, Grace Contino, Addison Dunn, William
Garrison, Blaine Laughlin, Anthony Piplica, and Scott Strong
A special thanks to AE undergraduate Andrew Peterson for his contributions
to the project.
AE Teams win Top Awards in AHS Design Competitions
July 22, 2011 -- Undergraduate and graduate teams from the Georgia Institute of Technology captured first and second place in the 2011 American Helicopter Society Student Design Competitions. This was Georgia Tech’s 28th year participating in the competition.
The American Helicopter Society’s annual competition requires undergraduate and graduate teams to design and submit proposals on a multi-mission vertical lift system that meets the requirements three different missions: search and rescue, insertion and resupply. The Georgia Tech teams competed with others from around the world.
The Georgia Tech undergraduate team won first place in this year’s competition with its rotorcraft Golden Retriever, while the graduate team placed second with its entry Odyssey. Georgia Tech has obtained the first or second place award 27 out of the 28 years that it has competed in the AHS Student Design Competitions.
Daniel P. Schrage, professor of aerospace engineering, is the faculty mentor for both teams consisting of aerospace engineering majors. The members of the undergraduate team include Laura Armanios, Silvio Lopez, Natasha Barbely, Trevor Mohr, Andrew Carter, Michael Moyer, Dennis Garza, Kit Taylor and Gregg Hines. The graduate team consists of Sylvester Ashok, Jonathan Litwin, Raymond Beale, Marc Mugnier, Bhanu Chiguluri, Jaikrishnan Vijaykumar, Michael Jones, Xin Zhang and Jeewoong Kim.
This year’s sponsor of the competition was Bell Helicopter Textron.
RoboBoat Teams Excel in International Competition
July 6, 2011 - Two Georgia Tech RoboBoat Teams made it to the finals in the 4th International RoboBoat Competition, held June 9-12 in Virginia Beach. Georgia Tech Aerospace System Design Laboratory placed 3rd and the Georgia Tech Savannah Robots placed 7th out of 15 university teams competing. Georgia Tech was the only school represented by two independent teams, and the first to have two teams place in the top half.
The RoboBoat Competition is a student robotics challenge in which teams design and race autonomous surface vehicles through an aquatic obstacle course. The Association of Unmanned Vehicle Systems Foundation and the Office of Naval Research jointly sponsored the event.
During this year's competition, 150 students from across the U.S., Taiwan and Indonesia competed for the title of "Best RoboBoat" and $20,000 in prize money. The robotic boats were asked to perform a series of progressively difficult tasks that simulate the types of activities that are expected of robotic craft built for the U.S. Navy and Coast Guard.
The Georgia Tech Aerospace System Design Laboratory’s Marine Robotics Group took home third place and $3,000. The team is made up of Aerospace Engineering graduate students Alan Smith, Sean Culpepper, David Moroniti, Eric Van Gehuchten and Pierre Valdez; Electrical and Computer Engineering graduate student Edward Macdonald; Computer science undergraduates Patrick Dillon and Alex Okonishnikov; Mechanical engineering undergraduates Chris Taylor and Jeff Carpenter. The team’s advisor is Professor Dimitri Mavris from the School of Aerospace Engineering.
Advised by Fumin Zhang, assistant professor in the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering, the Savannah team is made up of Electrical and Computer Engineering graduate students Steven Bradshaw, Dongsik Chang, Shayok Mukhopadhyay and Klimka Szwaykowska; Computer engineering undergraduate Will Crick; Electrical engineering undergraduates Valerie Bazie, Lisa Hicks, Sean Maxon and Casey T. Smith.
Aimee Fricker, Scottie Flemming, Sherrie Hall, and Jonathan Walker receive
April 8, 2011 - Our congratulations to Aimee Fricker (Advisor: Prof. Zinn), Scottie Beth Flemming (Advisor: Prof. Pritchett), Sherrie Hall (Advisor: Prof. Walker), and Jonathan Walker (Advisor: Prof. Walker)! They are among an elite group to be awarded fellowships under the 2011 National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Research Fellowship Program (GRFP).
The program recognizes and supports outstanding graduate students in NSF-supported science, technology, engineering and mathematics disciplines who have demonstrated outstanding abilities and accomplishments, as well as the potential to strengthen the vitality of science and engineering in the United States.
This fellowship offers a stipend of $30,000 a year for three years and a $10,500 cost of education allowance for students at or near the beginning of their graduate studies. Applicants for the fellowship program submit a proposal to the NSF, which are reviewed by a panel of scientists, mathematicians, engineers and other experts in graduate education. Proposals must demonstrate how the student's research will enhance scientific and technical understanding, while benefiting society.
Catherine Phan and William Runge receive NSF EAPSI Fellowships
April 7, 2011 - Our congratulations to Catherine Phan and William Runge, who have received NSF's prestigious East Asia and Pacific Summer Institutes (EAPSI) fellowships! This program sends US graduate students abroad for roughly 2 months to conduct research in a different cultural and scientific setting. There is also an orientation program in Washington DC, for which Catherine Phan and William each received travel support and $700 towards lodging and miscellaneous expenses.
The EAPSI award for Catherine Phan includes USD $5,000 stipend from NSF as well as NZD$4,000 living allowance provided by the New Zealand Royal Society. She will be going to the University of Auckland to work in the Centre of Advanced Composite Materials, between June 14-August 12, 2011.
William Runge will be working with the University of Sydney, conducting stability and control flight testing of a blended-wing body UAV being designed by a cooperative group at U-Sydney, University of Stuttgart in Germany, and the University of Colorado at Boulder. He will spend 2-3 days a week in the Australian outback at a rural flight test facility in Marulan, piloting the vehicle himself, and putting it through a series of flight test maneuvers designed to identify the dynamic response of the vehicle to various perturbations. The remainder of his time will be spent in Sydney, on data analysis.
Natasha Barbely and Luis Castro win Awards for
Outstanding Undergraduate Research
April 5, 2011 - Natasha Barbely and Luis Reyes Castro, seniors in the School of Aerospace Engineering, were awarded one of the 2011 College of Engineering Outstanding Undergraduate Researcher award (Natasha) and the Sigma Xi Best Undergraduate Research Award (Luis).
Both awardees are published authors and have done outstanding research, with the support and guidance of their advisors, Professors Sankar and Ahuja for Natasha, and Professor Tsiotras for Luis. Details of their research are provided below. Congratulations to Natasha and Luis on these well-deserved recognitions!
Natasha’s research focuses on rotorcraft aeroacoustics. She is currently enrolled in the Co-Op program at NASA Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, CA, and has worked closely with a number of world-renowned experts (Dr. William Warmbrodt, Dr. Ben Sim, Cahit Kitaplioglu) and participated in the modeling and testing of the Boeing SMART rotor. For this effort, NASA named her as the third author of a paper at the 2009 American Helicopter Society Annual Forum titled, “Reduced In-Plane, Low Frequency Noise of an Active Flap Rotor.” This paper was selected as the best paper in her session.
In summer of 2009, Natasha analyzed data from this test to identify contamination of the acoustic time history caused by the acoustic reflections in the 40-by 80-foot wind tunnel. She also developed an analytical/computational approach for correcting these errors. She has presented her research as the first author of a paper with her NASA colleagues titled, "Acoustics Reflections of Full-Scale Rotor Noise Measurements in NFAC 40-by 80-Foot Wind Tunnel" at the AHS 2010 Aeromechanics Specialists Conference in San Francisco, CA.
This past summer she performed data reduction and analysis of the UH-60A acoustics data from the 2009 Individual Blade Control (IBC) Program in the 40-by 80-Foot Wind Tunnel and began writing the UH-60A Individual Blade Control Acoustics Wind Tunnel Data Report. Currently she is participating in acoustical experimental work with Dr. Krish Ahuja at Georgia Tech Research Institute. She has gained hands-on experience with various acoustic experiments along with her own project involving exploration of various lengths of microphone probes.
The College of Engineering Outstanding Undergraduate Researcher award includes a monetary stipend ($250) and desk award. Selections for the award were based on research work of high quality and demonstration of leadership on the project.
Luis Reyes Castro
Luis’ research focused on the consensus problem for networked control problems. More specifically, Luis investigated an extension of the classical consensus protocol for networked controlled systems. Consensus problems have been originally used in distributed computing and management science and, most recently, have found extensive application in multi-agent, mobile network problems. The proposed extension of the standard consensus protocol leads to the following advantages: first, it can be used to achieve consensus at points that do not necessarily belong to the convex hull of the initial conditions, something which is not possible with the original, standard version of the consensus protocol. This may be beneficial in case of obstacle avoidance or as part of cooperative deception strategies. Second, this extended protocol can be utilized to generate intricate geometrical patterns of the agent paths. These paths can be useful for coordinated, distributed surveillance and monitoring applications.
The findings from Luis' work was documented in the following two peer-reviewed conference papers:
(a) “A Note on the Consensus Protocol with Some Applications to Agent Orbit Pattern Generation,'” which was presented at the recent 10th Symposium on Distributed Autonomous Robotic Systems (DARS), held in Lausanne, Switzerland from November 1–3, 2010, (and soon to appear in a book by Springer-Verlag). The paper was nominated for the best paper award in the DARS'10 conference.
(b) "Extended Multi-agent Consensus Protocols for the Generation of Geometric Patterns in the Plane,'' American Control Conference, to be held in San Francisco, from June 29--July 1, 2011.
A plaque with a cash reward will be presented to Luis and a certificate will also be presented to the advisor at the annual Sigma Xi Awards Banquet.