AIAA Design/Build/Fly Team Sets ERAU Record

The Daytona Beach AIAA Student Branch's Design/Build/Fly 2015-2016 team is the highest placing in ERAU history. One of nine teams to complete all of the missions, ERAUDB finished 11th overall in the competition after investing 4000 man-hours as a team. The missions this year required a dual-UAV system, the first time more than one aircraft has been required by the competition. A Manufacturing Support Aircraft (MSA), dubbed "Big Bertha", had to carry "GatorTot", a Production Aircraft (PA), inside of it. The team modeled the mission similar to that of the Aerospacelines "Super Guppy". DBF is an international collegiate aeronautical design competition that is sponsored by the AIAA Foundation, Textron Aviation, and Raytheon Missile Systems. 145 universities from around the world entered the competition in October 2015. Teams must submit a design proposal, a technical report, and attend the flyoff in order to have a shot at winning the competition. 80 teams were invited to the 2016 flyoff, 38 teams earned a flight score, and 9 teams completed all of the missions - ERAUDB and ERAU Prescott were among them. For more information, check out the competition requirements and results at

By |June 1st, 2016|Categories: Blog|0 Comments

Big Turnout to EFRC Recruitment Meeting

Nearly 40 ERAU engineering students came out to fill the EFRC hangar on Monday night. Active recruitment is underway for many of the projects at the flight center. Pizza and refreshments were served while sparks of interest flew around the room over technical conversations about the challenges being faced and the plans to overcome them.

By |March 4th, 2016|Categories: Blog|0 Comments

AE Students and Faculty Win $1 Million DARPA Award

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (ERAU) and Creare LLC are developing an advanced autonomous flight control system to navigate unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) in unknown dynamic environments, such as urban environments.  The system leverages recent developments in small, low-power, and low-cost sensor technology and improved computer hardware, along with high performance guidance, navigation, and control (GNC) algorithms. The autonomous GNC system under development by ERAU includes vision-based algorithms for improved navigation in GPS-denied environments, 3-D terrain algorithms to generate an adaptive terrain map from processed vision and LIDAR sensor data, and receding horizon algorithms to adaptively plan a 3-D path through the environment with obstacle avoidance.  A bio-inspired, fault-tolerant flight control system is being developed to autonomously fly the vehicle along the planned path subject to disturbances such as wind gusts.  The flight control system is designed to compensate for potential system failures such as sensor or actuator failures.  The GNC system will also incorporate reactive obstacle avoidance algorithms to sense and avoid dynamic obstacles in the scene. To support this research effort, ERAU has instrumented a SkyJib quadcopter UAV with a sensor suite that includes monocular and stereo cameras, an infrared camera, a scanning LIDAR, and an inertial navigation system (INS) with GPS.  This UAV served as a test platform for data collection during the Phase I program, and it will be used for GNC system development and validation during the Phase II program.  ERAU has also developed a high fidelity simulation environment to simulate autonomous UAV flight in virtual urban environments.  The simulator includes detailed 6 degree-of-freedom UAV models, sensor models, and hardware-in-the-loop simulation capability.  This simulation environment serves as an important tool for GNC system development and validation as well as the development of [...]

By |February 8th, 2016|Categories: Blog|0 Comments

Guest Speaker – Dr. K Viswanathan

Dr. K Viswanathan (Vishy) presented on aircraft noise production and mitigation to a crowded room of AE students and faculty. Dr. Vishy covered topics spanning commercial and military aircraft, emphasizing specific aircraft and engine components that generate noise. He explained some of the methods utilized at The Boeing Company for measuring noise and mitigating it as well. The top example presented was the beveling of a jet engine nozzle to direct the propagation of noise away from servicemen on the deck of an aircraft carrier. Dr. Vishy identified needed technological breakthroughs and studies to win this noisy battle.

By |January 28th, 2016|Categories: Blog|0 Comments

Guest Speaker – Dr. Ellen Longmire

Dr. Ellen Longmire of the University of  Minnesota presented to a crowded room of AE students and faculty at Embry-Riddle today. Dr. Longmire held a detailed and engaging discussion on coherent structures' evolution and organization in turbulent boundary layers. After the talk, she spent the rest of her time at ERAU meeting with College of Engineering faculty to discuss the work of her and her colleagues.

By |January 14th, 2016|Categories: Blog|0 Comments

Derrick Stanley, 2016 Black Engineer of the Year Awards (BEYA) Modern Day Technology Award Winner

Derrick Stanley, an Embry-Riddle alumni and Adjunct Professor of ERAU worldwide and Boeing Engineer, has won the 2016 Black Engineer of the Year Awards (BEYA) Modern Day Technology Award. Boeing recognized his contributions to the aerospace industry and to the technological advancements of The Boeing Company, thus, making him more than a deserving individual for the award. Derrick will be presented with the award at the Modern Day Technology Leaders Luncheon on Friday, February 19th, 2016. Heartiest Congratulations to Derrick!

By |November 16th, 2015|Categories: Blog|0 Comments

U.S News & World Report mentions Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University might get you closer to NASA than studying general engineering in the Ivy League.

In the article, “4 Factors to Consider before Applying to Ivy League Schools”, by U.S News & World Report, the importance of selecting the right university according to your interest is highlighted. One of the factors to consider before applying is your potential field of work. Under this factor, U.S News & World Report states, “For example, you might want to apply to New York University's Stern Business School than study general economics in an Ivy League institution. Similarly, studying aerospace engineering at Embry Riddle Aeronautical University might get you closer to that NASA gig than studying general engineering in the Ivy League. Employers want to hire you because you can do the job, not merely because you hold an Ivy League degree.” The link to the article is as follows:

By |October 5th, 2015|Categories: Blog|0 Comments

Speed of the Game: Science of Impact

What is the science of a golf ball’s flight impact? To answer this question, Dr. Richard Pat Anderson, Professor of Aerospace Engineering, was interviewed by PGA Tour. In this short documentary, Dr. Anderson explains why there are circular dimples on the golf ball and how that affect the ball’s flight path. The link to this documentary is provided below.

By |October 1st, 2015|Categories: Blog|0 Comments

Embry-Riddle Aerospace Engineering Student Teams Dominate NASA Astronautics Design Competition

Two teams of students from Embry-Riddle’s Daytona Beach Campus were placed first in their categories in the Revolutionary Advanced Aerospace Systems – Academic Linkage (RASC-AL) design competition sponsored by NASA and the National Institute for Aerospace (NIA). Sixteen teams competed in the contest, which challenges students to solve real-life space exploration challenges. This year, the competition asked teams to develop a mission with innovative approaches and new technologies allowing astronauts to be less dependent on resources transported from Earth. This included four categories: Earth independent lunar pioneering; Mars moons prospector; and large-scale Mars entry, descent and landing (EDL). “Some of the teams had ideas that NASA might be able to use as we venture out beyond low-Earth orbit,” said Pat Troutman, Human Exploration Strategic Analysis lead at NASA’s Langley Research Center in Hampton, Va. “The judges and I were impressed by the students’ engineering skills and innovative thinking.” The first placed team in the Mars EDL category was a team advised by Embry-Riddle Aerospace Engineering professor Dr. Eric Perrell, including Aerospace Engineering seniors Justin Bennett, Nolan Fletcher, Abdul Manarvi, Matt Neiding, James Rogers, Cody Shaw and Jon Willems. The team presented concepts for a pathfinder mission to demonstrate launching a spacecraft from Earth and placing a 20-metric-ton payload for producing oxygen and fuel for later human missions on the surface of Mars. “The RASC-AL competition was an amazing opportunity for aerospace students to come together and share innovations and ideas that will someday contribute to human space exploration,” Fletcher said. “The team and I are grateful to be recognized by industry leaders and to represent our university at such a prestigious event.”

By |July 28th, 2015|Categories: Blog|0 Comments

ERAU’s integrated autonomous free-flyer Robotic Spacecraft System

NASA recently announced the continuation of a two-phase $750K STTR Research Award on Free-Flying Unmanned Robotic Spacecraft for Asteroid Resource Prospecting and Characterization. ERAU Faculties Dr. Hever Moncayo as PI and Dr. Richard Prazenica as Co-PI, and the Research Engineer Dr. Kris Zacny from HoneyBee Robotics Company as Co-PI are leading the effort. Dr. Sergey Drakunov from the ERAU Physical Sciences Department is also collaborating on this research effort. In this project, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (ERAU) and Honeybee Robotics (HBR) are developing an integrated autonomous free-flyer robotic spacecraft system to support the exploration and subsequent resource utilization of asteroids as well as other planetary bodies and moons. The proposed spacecraft will address the first step towards In Situ Resource Utilization from Near Earth Object bodies; namely it will prospect it with sample acquisition devices and characterize the NEO for ISRU potential. The research team will focus on an innovative resource prospecting mission concept based on autonomous small marsupial free-flyer prospector spacecraft. Such technologies are currently being developed at ERAU. The spacecraft will utilize unique technologies such as MicroDrills and Pneumatic Samplers previously developed under other SBIR projects by Honeybee Robotics. In particular, the project focuses on flight control and reconfiguration for guidance under extreme environments, vision-aided navigation approaches, and sampling systems design, testing and evaluation. The successful completion of this research effort is anticipated to provide a theoretical and experimental framework to investigate the capabilities of a marsupial-based robotic system to explore and extract samples from terrains that would be inaccessible to traditional rover-type vehicles and where traditional flight guidance and navigation sensors, such as GPS receivers and magnetometers, are not functional.

By |July 13th, 2015|Categories: Blog|0 Comments