The School of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering recently celebrated the end of the school year with their annual Spring Senior Luncheon in conjunction to the Spring Board of Advisors’ (BOA) meeting. During the luncheon, Tommy Lear, BOA Chair, gave a keynote presentation. AME also celebrated the seniors and bid them farewell and good luck in their future endeavors. Lastly, AME honored two special groups of students. The first was the AME Undergraduate Outstanding Students and the second was the Graduate Student Scholarship Recipients. DSC_4958X

Outstanding Students (left to right): Joel Jimenez Cortez, ME Outstanding Junior; Nathan Justus, AE Outstanding Senior; Jordan Logue, AE Outstanding Junior; Dickens Danson Mugumya, AE Outstanding Sophomore; Octavio Serrano, ME Outstanding Sophomore; and Tim Willis, ME Outstanding Senior.

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Graduate Student Scholarship Recipients (left to right): Mustafa Ghazi, Thomas Milam Scholarship; Anand Balu Nellippallil, Frank Chuck Mechanical Engineering Scholarship; Mortaza Saeidijavash, Jim & Bee Close Scholarship; Alejandro Rivas, Jim & Bee Close Scholarship; Jawanza Bassue, ConocoPhillips Scholarship; and (not pictured) Jelena Milisavljevic, Close and Francis Family Scholarship.

Congratulations to the recipients, and good luck to the seniors!

Congratulations to the University of Oklahoma’s Crimson Skies Design Build Fly team for their 5th place finish at the International AIAA Design Build Fly Competition in Wichita, Kansas on April 15-17, 2016. The competition hosted 80 teams from across the world including the University of Texas, Georgia Institute of Technology, Cornell University, University of Southern California, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cairo University, Johns Hopkins University, Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Embry Riddle Aeronautical University and many more.

Competition Details:

  • The team successfully completed tech inspection on its first attempt.
  • [Mission 1]  The airplane overheated and short circuited a motor on the first flight (working hard against 20 MPH Wichita winds melted the insulating enamel on the coils).
  • The team was prepared with spare parts to repair the aircraft and propulsion system. They removed took two cells to avoid a similar motor failure and were successful in the very next flight window (~1.5 hours later, still in 20MPH winds).
  • [Mission 2] Mothership airplane carried the smaller craft internally, one lap, good landing just as practiced (25MPH winds).
  • [Mission 3] The team executed the most problematic mission without issue in the most challenging winds of the contest (30MPH).

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Team members of Crimson Skies include:

  • Dalton Gregory, Project Manager
  • Seth Fackler, Chief Engineer
  • Alex Spens, Structures Group Lead
  • Dan Carlton, Propulsion Group Lead
  • Nathan Justus, Aerodynamics Group Lead
  • Aaron Allred, Control Systems Specialist
  • Alec Watson, Propulsion Dynomometer Development
  • Chris Sherlock, Manufacturing Specialist
  • Christine Greve
  • Hunter Herzfeld
  • Timothy Blackford
  • Clayton Smith
  • Amy Griffin
  • Alex Bryant
  • Vishnu Priya Parasaram
  • Dylan Gregory
  • Thomas Hays, Faculty Advisor

2016-04-16 16.31.51This top five finish was the best ever finish for OU’s Crimson Skies DBF! A very special thanks to NORDAM for its team sponsorship. The success of the University of Oklahoma at this competition is in great part due to the resources made available by NORDAM.

Congratulations, Crimson Skies! We are so proud of your hard work and great success!

by Lama Agha, OU Daily

Ciora TaylorOU student Ciore Taylor pursues multiple interests ranging from mathematics to professional writing.

Taylor, a mechanical engineering junior, has already written and published her first book and is now in the process of writing her second.

Taylor grew up in a small town in Kansas with a population of 8,000. Her family now lives in Tulsa.

“Attending a public school in a small town taught me the value of hard work, individuality and respect for people,” Taylor said. “When I was 16, I moved to Tulsa and attended a private school and learned the value of diversity, communication and respect for myself.”

The transition from a small public school to a larger private school altered Taylor’s life, and she talks extensively about her experiences in her book, she said.

Taylor’s first book, “The Conversation Starts Here: A Perspective of Self, Culture and the American Society,” talks about bridging the miscommunication gap.

“My purpose in writing this book is to shed light on the gray areas of communication and help others to understand that not all people who impact you in a negative way have negative intentions,” Taylor said. “My life has equipped me with many examples that force me to give humanity the benefit of the doubt in regards to other people’s motives.”

These lessons have taught Taylor about starting new relationships with a clean slate and giving multiple chances to walk in someone else’s shoes, she said.

Taylor is currently working on her second book, “Pressing Past the Pain,” which has a different intended audience than her first book.

“This book is for the ladies and highlights the power of self-love, letting go and pressing past the pain of a relationship that did it’s best to break you,” Taylor said. “This book teaches women how to root themselves with faith and hope for the future rather than an unchangeable past that only brings your spirit down.”

Though Taylor has been a successful writer, she chose to major in mechanical engineering. In fact, she said she never considered majoring in English.

“I was visiting OU and had a tour scheduled for the College of Journalism at four, so I was encouraged to visit another tour as I waited,” Taylor said. “I chose to go tour the College of Engineering, and visiting that college felt like home from the moment I set foot into Rawls Engineering Practice Facility. That day, I never made it to hear about the school of journalism, and I absolutely do not regret it.”

For four terms, Taylor has worked for two leading companies in the engineering industry, Shell Oil Company and Toyota Motor Manufacturing Company, she said.

“Success in writing has been a great accomplishment, but the success I have accomplished in engineering is also rewarding,” Taylor said.

To read more from Taylor, follow her blog here. Her novel can also be purchased here.

To view the original article, please visit the OU Daily. 

Andrew

Andrew Kocarnik is pictured on the right with his third place certificate.

AME Graduate Student Andrew Kocarnik recently participated in the AIAA Region IV Graduate Student Paper Competition receiving third place. His paper is titled, “Analysis of the Momentum Method and Blade Element Theory as Applied to Rotorcraft.” Andrew is currently pursuing his M.S. in Aerospace Engineering at OU.

“His work in our helicopter-centric independent study has been exemplary, and the award is well deserved,” said Assistant Professor Thomas Hays, Ph.D. “This paper was based on just the first portion of his work in the semester!”

As a third place winner, Andrew received a $250 cash prize.

Congratulations, Andrew!

The Sooner Rover Team was featured on KOKH Fox 25 news on Tuesday, April 12th. Check out the segment below. The Sooner Rover Team will be at the Norman Public Library on Saturday, April 30th at 2:00PM to showcase their rover and tell you all about the upcoming competition. For more information, visit www.soonerrover.com

View photos of the segment on the AME Facebook page.

Two teams of mechanical engineering seniors recently received financial support from the Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP) funded through the Office of the Vice President of Research. AME students Mckenna Beard and Tyler Spencer worked together on one project; Robert Berryman and Austin Burrus teamed up for the other project. With the support from UROP, the two teams received research grants of $1,000 each for creative, hands-on projects under the mentorship of a faculty member. Dr. Kuang-Hua Chang, AME Professor, mentored both teams while Jawanza Bassue, AME graduate student, mentored as a design consultant.

Both of the teams had similar objectives: to design a green-energy tricycle that will appeal to commuters at a sale price of $2,000. For Beard and Spencer, their ultimate goal was to create a vehicle that would allow an individual to travel more than 40 miles on a single battery charge without exerting excessive energy. As for Berryman and Burrus, their goal was to improve frame integrity through analysis and lab testing while also reducing the cost of building the frame.

Every year, UROP recipients present the results of their research or accounts of their work in progress at the Honors College’s Undergraduate Research Day. The AME teams presented their research at the annual event on Saturday, April 2, 2016.

Tyler Spencer and Mckenna Beard

Tyler Spencer and Mckenna Beard

Robert Berryman and Austin Burrus

Robert Berryman and Austin Burrus

The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) recently selected the Class of 2016 AIAA Fellows and Honorary Fellows. This group of Fellows and Honorary Fellows represents the best of the aerospace community, as well as those who have contributed and advanced the aerospace industry. AME alumnus Brian Argrow, Ph.D., was selected as a 2016 AIAA Fellow.

Dr. Argrow graduated from AME with his B.S. in Aerospace Engineering in 1983, M.S. in Mechanical Engineering in 1986 and Ph.D. in Aerospace Engineering in 1989. During his time as a student, he worked closely with Dr. George Emanuel and Dr. Maurice Rasmussen. Dr. Argrow still remains in close contact with Dr. Emanuel today. While pursuing his M.S., Dr. Argrow focused his research on the design of supersonic minimum-length nozzles (MLN) and its application ranged from rocket and scramjet engines to gasdynamics lasers. During his doctoral studies, his research concentrated on the verification and analysis of the MLN flow field. After he completed his Ph.D., Dr. Argrow worked at AME as an Assistant Professor from 1989 to 1992.

In 1992, he move to Boulder to begin his career at the University of Colorado (UC). Dr. Argrow is now a Professor of Aerospace Engineering Sciences, Director of the UC’s Integrated Remote and In-Situ Sensing Program and founding director emeritus of the Research Engineering Center for Unmanned Vehicles (RECUV).

Professor Argrow’s research interests range from small unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) design and airspace integration to satellite aerodynamics, sonic boom, and engineering education. In the mid-1990s, he led supersonic wind tunnel tests at the NASA Langley Research Center that were the first to verify the method of osculating cones for supersonic waverider design. In 2000, Dr. Argrow’s research team created the first of its kind shock tube to create uniform static initial conditions near 800°F to explore non-classical dense gas dynamics. In 2010 he led the first UAS team to intercept a supercell thunderstorm as part of the second Verification of the Origins of Rotation in Tornadoes Experiment (VORTEX-2), the largest project ever organized to understand tornadoes. The technologies developed by Professor Argrow’s VORTEX-2 research group led to the formation of two companies, UASUSA, a manufacturer of small UAS, and Black Swift Technologies, a company created by RECUV Ph.D. graduates to manufacture autopilots and networked sensing/communications solutions.

Along with Dr. Argrow’s recent honor of being named an AIAA Fellow, he has received several teaching and education awards including the W.M. Keck Foundation Award for Excellence in Engineering Education and is a CU President’s Teaching Scholar, as well as a Fellow of the CU Center for STEM Learning. In 2007, he served as co-chair of the first Symposium for Civilian Applications of Unmanned Aircraft Systems, and since 2008 he has chaired workshops and moderated several panels on research directions for the integration of UAS into the National Airspace System. Dr. Argrow is chair-emeritus of the AIAA Unmanned Systems Program Committee (USPC). During his tenure as chair, he led the USPC to expand its focus to include a technically informed discussion of airspace integration policy and developed a formal partnership with the Association for Unmanned Vehicles Systems International (AUVSI). He then organized and chaired the first major joint AIAA/AUVSI event, the second Workshop on Civilian Applications of Unmanned Aircraft Systems at AUVSI’s Unmanned Systems 2014 Conference in May 2014.

In 2014, Dr. Argrow completed a semester sabbatical at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration National Severe Storms Laboratory at the National Weather Center in Norman, where he is continuing to collaborate with severe-storms researchers to develop new capabilities for using small UAS for in-situ and remote data collection to advance severe weather forecasting and reduce warning times.

Lastly, Dr. Argrow leaves current AME students with some advice, “I hope that you understand that what you ultimately get out of your education is directly proportional to what you put into it in terms of hard work, perseverance, and the recognition that learning is both a personal responsibility and a life-long commitment.”

4AME Senior Jerry Varughese recently traveled to the University of Southern California in Los Angeles to represent the Pi Tau Sigma OU Chapter at the 2016 Pi Tau Sigma National Convention from February 19-21st. Jerry Varughese currently serves as President of the OU Chapter. During his time as a member of Pi Tau Sigma, Jerry has held the following roles: President (2015-2016), Vice-President (2014-2015) and Webmaster (2013-2014). Pi Tau Sigma has been an integral part of his experience at the University of Oklahoma School of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering.

Pi Tau Sigma is a National Mechanical Engineering Honor Society. Members are selected on a basis of sound engineering ability, scholarship (upper 35%), personality and probable future success in their chosen field of mechanical engineering. There are three grades of membership: honorary, graduate and active. Honorary members are technical graduates who are actively engaged in engineering work or mechanical engineering faculty members. Graduate membership is designated for those continuing their education through graduate studies. Active members are selected from the junior and senior mechanical engineering classes at their respective universities whose mechanical engineering curriculum must be accredited by the Accreditation Board of Engineering and Technology, also known as ABET.

Over 200 Pi Tau Sigma members from across the United States, Mexico and Qatar were in attendance at the 2016 Pi Tau Sigma National Convention. Some of the highlights of the convention include: (1) the design competition hosted by Autodesk in which members gained exposure to their new CAD software Fusion360, (2) the tour of the California Science Center given by American Astronaut Dr. Paul Rooney, and (3) the Saturday evening keynote speaker Dr. Mau deRidder of Virgin Galactic.

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During the tour of the California Science Center, Pi Tau Sigma members were granted access to Space Shuttle Endeavour. This space shuttle was the last to be launched into orbit under NASA’s STS Program.

2Pictured to the left is Jerry with American Astronaut Dr. Paul Rooney. He is the faculty advisor of USC’s Tau Beta Chapter.

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Pictured above is Jerry with one of the Space Shuttle’s main three engines. “Growing up, I still remember watching the space shuttle launches on TV,” said Jerry. “It was an amazing experience to finally be able to see one of these engineering marvels in person.”

Jerry will graduate in May 2016 with a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering. “Pi Tau Sigma has been one of the greatest experiences in my college career. It has afforded me the opportunity to not only attend this convention, but also network with my fellow Pi Tau Sigma Colleagues, as well as, industry professionals,” said Jerry. “Pi Tau Sigma has added significant value to my experience here at the University of Oklahoma, as well as, my future career in industry.”

In the spring of 2015, Dave and Susan Bert made a generous donation to the School of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering for the creation and renovation of a graduate student team room in the Engineering Laboratory. Upon completion of the renovation, the team room was named The Dave and Susan Bert Team Room. An official unveiling and ribbon cutting ceremony was held on Monday, March 7, 2016 with Dave Bert, members of the Graduate Student Community, AME faculty and AME staff in attendance.

DSC_4637The Dave and Susan Bert Team Room was completely renovated from top to bottom with new carpeting, tables, glass boards, and much more. The room was created as a multipurpose space for AME graduate students for group meetings, presentations, study groups, a lounge, and much more.

The Leadership Team of AME’s Graduate Student Community worked together to design and create The Dave and Susan Bert Team Room. Jelena Milisavljevic led the graduate students in coordination of the team room with fellow GSC peers, including Jackson Autrey, Arun Balakrishnan, Luke N. Balmer, Jawanza N. Bassue, Amber L. Kapoor, Anand Balu Nellippallil, Oluwaseyi T. Ogunsola, Stewart E. Ohler, Mahyar Pourghasemi, Maryam Sabeghi, and Mortaza Saeidi. In addition to the graduate students, M. Cengiz Altan, AME Director; Farrokh Mistree, GSC Faculty Mentor; Melissa Foster, Danielle Geier, Debbie Mattax, Billy Mays, Rebecca Norris, Kate O’Brien-Hamoush, and Greg Williams, AME Staff; assisted with the renovation.

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The Bert family is one of loyal distinction to AME. Dave Bert is the son of the late Dr. Charles W. Bert, who served as a faculty member at AME for more than 40 years and also served two terms for a combined 11 years as AME Director. In addition to Dr. Bert’s legacy at AME, Dave Bert and his family continue to leave their mark. Dave is the Vice President of Drilling for Chesapeake Energy Corporation. He graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from OU AME in 1985. Dave has been a member of AME’s Board of Advisors since 2003 and has also served as Chair. He also serves as a member of the Gallogly College of Engineering Advisory Board. In 2012, Dave was inducted into the University of Oklahoma Gallogly College of Engineering Distinguished Graduates Society.

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Dave and Susan Bert have been married for over 25 years. They have two daughters, Bailey and Brianna. The Bert family resides in Edmond. Bailey attends the University of Arkansas and plays the piccolo in the Razorback Marching Band. Brianna and Susan play competitive tennis and enjoy volunteering. Dave enjoys reading, civic and sporting activities. The family enjoys watching Oklahoma City Thunder basketball games together, church activities, and traveling.

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The AME Graduate Student Community, as well as its faculty and staff, would like to thank Dave and Susan Bert for their generous donation! Because of donors like you, AME will continue to provide the best educational experience for our students!

On Monday, March 7, 2016, the AME Graduate Student Community hosted a Graduate Student Poster Fair. Students presented their research to a panel of judges. The team of judges included AME faculty Andrea L’Afflitto, Yingtao Liu and Kuang-Hua Chang, and AME Board of Advisors members Dave Bert, Tommy Lear and Matt Green. The judges rated each presentation and selected first, second and third place winners.

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Anand Balu Nellippallil received third place with his research titled An Inductive Method for the Exploration of Solution Space for Studying Thermo-Mechanical Behavior of AA 5083 Aluminum Alloy during Hot Rolling.

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Mortaza Saeidijavash received second place with his research titled High Thermal Conductivity Polymer Nanocomposites.

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Arun Balakrishnan received first place with his research titled Effects of Degree of Fuel Unsaturation on NOx Emission Form Petroleum and Biofuel Flames.

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Congratulations to the winners and to all the participants! To view more photos of the GSC Poster Fair, please visit the AME Facebook Page.

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