Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

Aerospace Engineering

Research Focus

Aerospace engineering is the branch of engineering behind the design, construction and science of aircraft and spacecraft. It is broken into two major and overlapping branches: aeronautical engineering and astronautical engineering. The former deals with craft that stay within Earth’s atmosphere, and the latter deals with craft that operate outside of Earth’s atmosphere. Research areas include aircraft and spacecraft design, aerodynamics, propulsion, turbomachinery, aerospace structures, aeroelasticity, aeroacoustics, jet and rocket engine combustion, vehicle dynamics and control, and computational thermal/fluid dynamic methods.


  • Aeroacoustics
  • Aerodynamic vehicle – and design optimization
  • Air-breathing propulsion
  • Aircraft design
  • Aircraft stability and control
  • Applied mechanics of composite materials
  • Computational fluid dynamics
  • External and internal fluid dynamic physics
  • Fluid-flow control
  • Rotorcraft aeromechanics
  • Turbulence
  • Unsteady fluid mechanics
  • Wind turbine design and fluid mechanics


  • Space structures
  • Spacecraft stability and control
  • Mission analysis
  • Rocket propulsion and reacting flows with CFD
  • Orbital and sub-orbital mechanics
  • Design of space systems
  • Robotics systems
  • Fluid mechanics of spacecraft systems

Aerospace Faculty

Roger L. Davis Propulsion using Computational Fluid Dynamics.
Mohamed Hafez Transonic aerodynamics, Computational Fluid Dynamics.
Jean-Pierre Delplanque Computational and theoretical fluid dynamics and transport phenomena.
Fidelis Eke Dynamics and control of mechanical systems, spacecraft dynamics and control, dynamics of variable mass systems.
Ron Hess Man-machine systems, automatic and manual control systems, atmospheric flight mechanics, digital control systems.
Seongkyu Lee Aerodynaics and aeroacoustics, wind turbine aerodynamics and aeroacoustics, rotorcraft aerodynamics and aeroacoustics, and propulsion or turbomachinery fluid dynamics and acoustics.
Sanjay Joshi Control systems, spacecraft systems, autonomous robotics.
Valeria LaSaponara Composite laminate manufacturing; composite laminate physical testing; nondestructive testing.
Nesrin Sarigul-Klijn Finite element methods, aerospace structures, aeroelasticity, biomechanics, and vibro-acoustics.
Stephen Robinson
(Dept Chair)
Turbulence flow physics and modeling, experimental techniques, instrumentation, 3D scientific visualization, applied aerodynamics, safety engineering and applied cognitive psychology.
Case P. van Dam Aerodynamics including design and optimization, aircraft design, experimental and computational fluid dynamics, biofluiddynamics, wind energy, aero-hydrodynamics of sailing.

Facilities and Labs