July/August 2021

AIAA Announcements Nominations for AIAA Board of Trustees: Members-at-Large are Now Being Accepted Through 27 August

The AIAA Executive Nominating Committee (ENC) will compile a list of potential nominees for the Board of Trustees – Members-at-Large. The list will include nominees who will be selected to go to the next step of competency review and interview held by the nominating committee. The ENC will select specific candidates for the Institute’s Board of Trustees – Members-at-Large in November 2021. The Board of Trustees – Members-at-Large will be elected by the Council of Directors in March 2022 and announced soon thereafter.

The skills and competencies being sought for the Board of Trustees are:

Vision: Persons who have the ability to understand present states, clearly define what they should be in the future, and identify steps to achieve those ends.

Diverse Business Acumen: Persons who have the knowledge and understanding of the financial, accounting, marketing, communications, human resources, policy, and operational functions of an organization as well as the ability to make good judgments and quick decisions.

Domestic and International Aerospace Knowledge and Experience: Board membership reflects: a) the breadth of the various major sectors of aerospace both domestic and international; b) all levels of technology and systems development from basic research through all technology readiness levels to product development and deployment; and c) from different disciplines within aerospace.

Leadership/Strategy/Execution: Persons who have the ability to create a shared vision, obtain participation and buy-in, and achieve successful results.

AIAA Leadership and Participation: Board membership reflects experience in successful participation in a wide variety of leadership positions within AIAA, as well as knowledge of the new governance model.

Experience in adjacent aerospace areas: As the Institute broadens its reach beyond the traditional “Breguet Equation” disciplines, Board members who have experience in and strategic perspectives in these adjacent areas will broaden the Board’s view on new and emerging areas.

Young member knowledge and experience: As the Institute evolves, it is important that Board members have knowledge and understanding of issues relevant to young members in the aerospace industry.

Experience with organizational growth: Persons with experience in significantly growing organizations will serve as a resource to the Board as the Institute seeks to grow.

Experience with change or transition management: Board members with prior experience in organizational change or transition will serve as a vital resource to the Board as it seeks to execute its role.

• Demographic diversity: In addition to reflecting the membership’s diversity in the industry and volunteer involvement, it is important that the new Board membership be seen as reflecting demographic diversity (e.g., gender, ethnicity, age, etc.) as well.

AIAA members may nominate qualified individuals for the AIAA Board of Trustees Member-at-Large by submitting a nomination package of not more than three pages consisting of:

• Nominee’s Bio and/or CV and history of AIAA activities and/or engagement with other professional societies.
• Statement from the nominee of willingness and ability to serve if elected.
• Statement from the nominee addressing how he/she meets the sought competencies.

Please submit the nomination package directly to Christopher Horton, AIAA Governance Director, chrish@aiaa.org, no later than 27 August 2021.

Reminder: Nominations for AIAA Directors are Being Accepted Through 23 July

For nomination criteria, please go to: aiaa-awards.org/a/organizations/main/submissions/details/54295.
Please submit all nominations directly to Christopher Horton, AIAA Governance Secretary, chrish@aiaa.org, no later than 1800 hrs EDT, 23 July 2021.

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AIAA Foundation Making an Impact: AIAA Partners with Organizations to Inspire the Future STEM Workforce

Anna Porter Puckett, Jaden Shawyer, and Puneeth Bheesetty of Granby High School, Norfolk, Virginia. Credit: Granby High School.


AIAA is proud to partner with Blue Origin for the Design|Build|Launch (DBL) Competition as we both strive to inspire the future workforce in STEM fields. High school students are invited to develop research proposals in the fields of microgravity science or space technology that are judged on the basis of scientific/technical merit, outreach creativity, and feasibility. The 2021 winning proposal is “Acoustic Levitation Under Variable G,” presented by Puneeth Bheesetty, Anna Porter Puckett, and Jaden Shawyer of Granby High School, Norfolk, Virginia. The proposal experiment is the second AIAA-sponsored payload that will fly on the New Shepard rocket.

Team leader Puneeth will contribute to the research of acoustic levitation, and lead the team as they design, build, and test the acoustic levitator. He has been interested in space since childhood. His ambition is to push the boundaries of space exploration by contributing to the innovation of space exploration vehicles. He is also enrolled in the Norfolk Science, Technology and Advanced Research, which allows him to pursue his passion for space exploration.

Anna, a rising junior, contributes to the team by offering her creativity, strategic planning, and communication skills to help create an innovative project with broad appeal. She would like to show girls that space discoveries and developments impact everyone, and to encourage them to participate in STEM projects and programs.

Jaden, also a rising junior, contributes to the team with his strong science and mathematics background and innovative problem-solving abilities. He believes that inclusive teams made up of people from diverse backgrounds and different perspectives can spark innovation and creativity.

We look forward to hearing Puneeth, Anna, and Jaden present their findings at 2022 ASCEND.

Please consider donating in honor of the AIAA Foundation’s 25th Anniversary. K-12 Programs help inspire the next generation of aerospace professionals. For more information about how to get involved with AIAA and make an impact please visit www.aiaa.org/foundation or contact Alex D’Imperio, alexandrad@aiaa.org.

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AIAA Foundation Making an Impact: Conrad Challenge 2021 Virtual Innovation Summit

Kirsten Nelson and the Eir Clean Company team. Credit: K. Nelson and Eir Clean Company team

The Conrad Challenge is an annual, multi-phase innovation and entrepreneurship competition that encourages young adults to participate in designing the future. Each year, teams of 2-5 students, ages 13-18, from around the world create products and/or services to address some of the most pressing global and local challenges. They become entrepreneurial problem-solvers, addressing challenging social, scientific, and societal issues through utilizing their creativity and critical-thinking skills. This year the 2021 Virtual Innovation Summit took place 28–30 April, and featured students from 33 states and 49 countries.

The $2,500 AIAA Conrad Challenge Scholarship was awarded to Kirsten Nelson of the Eir Clean Company team from New Jersey. This team created the ValkEIRe autonomous airplane cleaning device. With the push of a button, this robot will sanitize aircraft using UVC light and disinfectant mist. The Eir Clean Company was formed through the It’s a Girl’s World STEM mentoring program, which Kirsten has participated in for three years. This opportunity has taught her how to develop business plans, practice STEM-related activities, and prepare for college with the help of dedicated volunteers.

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AIAA Foundation Making an Impact: AIAA “Look Up!” Award – Regeneron ISEF Winners

Isabella Weiner, Max Schaldach, and Melanie Deville. Credit: Weinder, Schaldach, and Deville

The AIAA “Look Up!” Award, presented at the 2021 Regeneron International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF), held virtually on 16–21 May, celebrates exceptional high school-level research to encourage further study in aerospace. Winners of the AIAA “Look Up!” Award receive a cash award and AIAA student membership with access to all student programs and upcoming partnership competitions and challenges. We congratulate the 2021 winners and encourage students to Look Up! and see their future in aerospace.

First Place ($2000)
Isabella Weiner,
Holy Trinity Episcopal Academy, Rockledge, FL
“In situ Resource Utilization of Martian Regolith for Construction, Year Four”
Growing up on the Space Coast, an interest in space exploration inspired her four-year research project on building using sulfur-concrete on Mars, which helped develop her passion for engineering and research.

Second Place ($1500)
Max Schaldach,
Freies Gymnasium Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland
“Development of a Rotor with Improved Aerodynamics to Propel a Quadcopter – Design and Manufacture According to the Laws of the Propeller Theory by Betz and Schmitz”
I am especially looking forward to getting involved in the aero-space groups – such as the team developing RC aircraft for AIAA’s Design/Build/Fly competition. After completing my undergraduate studies at Olin, I plan to pursue a master’s degree in engineering. I cannot wait to see where this adventure will ultimately take me.

Third Place ($1000)
Melanie Deville,
Westminster Christian School, Coral Gables, FL
“Visualization of Three-Dimensional Aerospike Nozzle Flow Using Schlieren Photography”
I am an avid lover of the sciences and the fine arts, being involved in activities such as science fair, dance, and choir. My love for science began with my father’s passion for Aerospace Engineering, and he taught me to appreciate the world beyond our own. My love for the fine arts began with my mother, who always showed me the beauty and joy that music can bring to life.

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Section News AIAA Northern Ohio Section Holds Event on Biomimicry

Dr. Vikram Shyam, NASA Glenn Research Center, leading a discussion on Biomimicry. Credit: AIAA Northern Ohio Section

On 22 May, the AIAA Northern Ohio Section held its first in-person event since the beginning of the pandemic, with 30 people attending. It was great to see our members and spend a beautiful day outside at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo. After lunch at the picnic area, Dr. Vikram Shyam from NASA Glenn Research Center led a discussion on current research in the area of Biomimicry. The lecture was well received with AIAA members asking questions about the role of artificial intelligence in leveraging biomimicry engineering approaches, and the kids answering questions about penguins and polar bears. After the lecture, members were able to explore the zoo and put their new knowledge to the test.

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Section News Making a Difference at Mach 2

The AIAA Albuquerque Section held a virtual meeting on 18 March and invited AIAA Associate Fellow Lt. Col. Tucker Hamilton, USAF F-35 Developmental Test Director of Operations, to talk about his flying experiences and show pictures and videos of what it is like to be an Experimental Fighter Test Pilot. His stories included major life-threatening aircraft accidents, close saves, combat flying revelations, serendipitous opportunities testing first of its kind technology, flying over 30 aircraft from a zeppelin to a MiG-15 to an A-10, and managing the Joint Strike Fighter Developmental Test program for all three services. Hamilton started his Air Force career as an operational F-15C pilot. He then served as an Air Liaison Officer in Germany where he was the director of operations for a key command and control squadron. While serving in Germany he was hand-selected to be the initial cadre for the first MC-12 squadron in Afghanistan, heralding in the Air Force’s first tactical Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance aircraft. He served as the Chief Instructor for 200+ aircrew and accumulated over 400 combat hours. After these experiences he went to test pilot school and eventually went to Washington, DC, to work on the F-35 program. Hamilton transitioned to Edwards AFB, CA, where he currently flies the F-35 as the Developmental Test Director of Operations. He spoke about surviving a mid-air collision, and then advocated collision avoidance systems.

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Obituary AIAA Honorary Fellow and Past President Currie Died in April

Malcolm Currie. Credit: Currie Family

Malcolm Currie, engineering physicist and former chairman and CEO of Hughes Aircraft, died on 18 April. He was 94.

Currie enlisted in the U.S. Navy during World War II. After his discharge, he attended the University of California, Berkeley, where he earned his bachelor’s degree in physics and doctoral degree in engineering physics. He began his career as a research scientist at Hughes in 1954, and rose to director of the company’s research and development engineering division. Currie oversaw projects such as the first digital airborne radars, laser systems and early satellite communications electronics.

Currie was recruited by Arnold Beckman to lead research and development at Beckman Instruments. In 1973, Currie was appointed undersecretary of defense research and engineering, where he was responsible for planning, managing, and guiding the defense department’s weapons research, development, and acquisition programs. In this position, he started and guided pioneering programs on the global positioning system and cruise missiles.

In 1977, he returned to Hughes and rose to become chairman and CEO before retiring in 1993. Currie is credited with leading its diversification from defense into such areas as commercial satellite communications and private business network products. After his retirement, he founded Currie Technologies, a developer and distributor of electric bikes and scooters.

Over the years, Currie and his wife generously donated to the University of Southern California, including the the 2008 endowment of the Malcolm R. Currie Chair in Technology and the Humanities. Currie was a member of the National Academy of Engineering, a Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers, and an AIAA Honorary Fellow. He was inducted into the Space Technology Hall of Fame in 1998 for his work on the global positioning system.

He held many patents and published numerous papers on topics from lasers to space propulsion. In 1994, he served as AIAA president.

Currie was a recipient of many awards including the U.S. Department of Defense’s Distinguished Public Service Medal, the NASA Distinguished Service Medal, the National Intelligence Medal, the Air Force Thomas D. White National Defense Award, the IEEE Founders Medal, and the American Electronics Association National Achievement Award. In 1993, he was honored with the AIAA Goddard Astronautics Award for exemplary contributions to the advancement of astronautics through pioneering work in critical technologies and through distinguished public service and industrial leadership of advancements which transformed astronautics for the benefit of mankind.

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Obituary AIAA Senior Member Bierley Died in January

Donald A. Bierley died on 18 January 2021. He was 88 years old.

Bierley was graduated from Miami University (Ohio) in 1954 with a degree in Mathematics and Physics. He worked as a civilian at Wright-Patterson AFB, OH, in the Aerial Reconnaissance Lab, for nearly five years. He then held an engineering position at the Air Technical Intelligence Center (ATIC), now the National Air and Space Intelligence Center (NASIC). He traveled extensively in the United States, Europe and Japan.

Bierley retired as the Foreign Space Systems Branch Chief in 1989 after 35 years as a civil servant. He then held a sub-program management position with Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC), retiring for a second time in 1999. He was also a U.S. Army Reserve veteran, serving from 1954-1964. Bierley was a 60-year member of AIAA.

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July/August 2021 AIAA Bulletin