Fall 2021: Research Opportunities for AE Students

Prof. Theodorou speaking to a group of 6 grad students

Fall 2021 AE Research for Pay or Credit


Most of the following listings are for credit, requiring the student to both gain the faculty's approval and register for credit. Students who have questions about this should contact the project manager directly. Research opportunities will be added as they are made available. Check back for updates. 


STUDENTS: To get credit for any of the following research projects, you will need to submit a signed and completed Undergraduate Research Permit. Find out more about undergraduate research here.


FACULTY: Email AE Communications to add or update your research listing(s). 


Project: Aerospace Propulsion Outreach Program

Can this work be performed remotely or online, if needed? No, meetings can happen virtually, but lab work is required
Project Manager: Mr. Andrew Yatsko
Action: Email your resume and interest to Mr. Andrew Yatsko (ayatsko3@gatech.edu)
Office: Weber 109A
Semester: Fall 2021​ and Spring 2022
Time Commitment: About 5-10 hrs per week (flexible).
Number of Students Needed: 3
Citizenship Requirement: No
Details: This is an undergraduate research topic where student will learn the inner workings of gas turbine engines, the Brayton cycle, hands on manufacturing and testing of a small gas turbine engine. Gas turbine engine performance characteristics. Component and cycle analysis of jet engines and turbomachinery. Thermodynamic cycles. The mechanics and thermodynamics of combustion. Turbine engine and rocket performance characteristics. Component and cycle analysis of jet engines and turbomachinery.


Project: Space Habitat Modeling using MBSE
Can this work be performed remotely or online, if needed? Yes, but in-person meetings are anticipated
Project Manager: Dr. Michael Balchanos
Action: Email your resume and interest to Dr. Michael Balchanos (michael.balchanos@asdl.gatech.edu)
Office: Weber 105
Semester: Fall 2021​ and option to continue for Spring 2022
Time Commitment: About 5-10 hrs per week (flexible).
Number of Students Needed: 1-2
Citizenship Requirement: No
Details: A lunar outpost is the next step in NASA’s space exploration under Mission Artemis, and sustainable resource management is essential for mission safety and successful completion. The habitat’s Environmental Control and Life support System (ECLSS) is key for the mission’s goals, and modeling and simulation tools for conceptual design of this subsystem are needed. The objective of the project is to leverage Model-Based Systems Engineering (MBSE) and architecting methods as a means to explore and verify system design requirements, through system level performance metrics and mission level Measures of Effectiveness (MoEs). Implemented in SySML, the end product will describe a lunar habitat’s baseline architecture, which could be executed through ECLSS simulation models (such as HabNet) and can be used to improve requirements traceability, allow for modular systems modeling and virtual testing, and advance knowledge on how the system and model operate, thus leading to better design decisions. For supporting modeling tasks, students with experience in MATLAB/Simulink, Python are needed, while prior exposure and work on SySML and architecting frameworks is preferred.


Project: Noise Certification Streamlining using MBSE Methods
Can this work be performed remotely or online, if needed? Yes, but in person meetings are also anticipated.
Project Manager: Dr. Michael Balchanos
Action: Email your resume and interest to Dr. Michael Balchanos (michael.balchanos@asdl.gatech.edu)
Office: Weber 105
Semesters: Fall 2021 and option for continuing Spring 2022
Time Commitment: About 5-10 hrs per week (flexible).
Number of Students Needed: 1-2
Citizenship Requirement: No
Details: The Aerospace Systems Design Laboratory is leading an FAA-supported initiative, which aims in assessing current noise certification procedures (per CFR 14, Part 36) and identifying opportunities to streamline the certification process, through cost and efficiency improvements. These could constitute equivalent procedures enabled by newer technologies and hardware and shall provide added flexibility to accommodate conventional and emerging air vehicle types (e.g., configurations for advanced air mobility). In support of the above, this research work involves the development and implementation of a Model-based Systems Engineering (MBSE) solution, utilizing a SySML and building an executable architecture model of the noise certification process. This model combines regulatory-driven requirements, representation of flight testing procedures and associated technologies, as well as a process simulation model for process efficiency evaluation. Student researcher tasks will involve exposure to both SySML development, as well as the certification process modeling.  Experience with Python and discrete event simulation methods is needed, while prior exposure and work in MBSE/SySML is preferred. 

 


Project: Tabletop exercise for Humanitarian Aid and Disaster Relief Operations
Can this work be performed remotely or online, if needed? Yes, but a number of in-person meetings are anticipated
Project Manager: Dr. Michael Balchanos
Action: Email your resume and interest to Dr. Michael Balchanos (michael.balchanos@asdl.gatech.edu)
Office: Weber 105
Semesters: Fall 2021 and option for continuing Spring 2022
Time Commitment: About 5-10 hrs per week (flexible).
Number of Students Needed: 1-2
Citizenship Requirement: No
Details:  With Humanitarian Assistance & Disaster Relief (HADR) capabilities becoming more important for nations as climate change worsens, stakeholders and planners seek for tools to allow generation and exploration of successful manned aerial, maritime and UAV fleet compositions. Such tools rely on simulating real HADR scenarios and are provide interactive “wargaming” decision-making for HADR mission planning and acquisition. Based on the intra-theater mission scenario related to the Tropical Cyclone Winston, this project is developing a tabletop interactive tradeoff environment, utilizing metrics such as packages delivered, location and population serviced, time to complete the mission and acquisition costs. We’re seeking student researchers to support mission scenario experimentation planning as well as visualization environment development. Experience in SoS Operations analysis techniques (e.g., Discrete Event Simulation methods) is preferred, as well as visualization tools and libraries (e.g., Dash, R Shiny, Tableau).


Project: Sustainable Mobility infrastructure
Can this work be performed remotely or online, if needed? Yes, but a number of in-person meetings will be required
Project Manager: Dr. Michael Balchanos
Action: Email your resume and interest to Dr. Michael Balchanos (michael.balchanos@asdl.gatech.edu)
Office: Weber 105
Semesters: Fall 2021 and option for continuing Spring 2022
Time Commitment: About 5-10 hrs per week (flexible).
Number of Students Needed: 2-3
Citizenship Requirement: No
Details: As transportation and rapidly increasing levels of passenger traffic (land, air and sea) is a major driver of rising carbon emissions and noise (with effects towards climate change and affecting quality of life), Mobility-focused Urban Design is key for achieving sustainability and carbon neutrality goals within modern cities. Airport cities are emerging as a global city landscape, as a key transportation interchange and a complex urban system that contains flows of people, goods, energy, water and information. This project (with support from ATL Airport Community Improvement Districts) seeks to develop a model to simulate mobility, through assessing impact of various Personal Rapid Transit (PRT) configurations serving the regions surrounding Atlanta’s Airport City (“Aerotropolis”). We’re seeking students interested in mobility infrastructure problems and are familiar with transportation systems and technologies (e.g., PRTs, transit shuttles, V2I). Experience with traffic and transportation agent-based modeling tools (e.g., SUMO, or libraries such as GAMA, MESA) is preferred, as well as visualization tools in Python.


Project: Vehicle Component Modeling using Modelica libraries
Can this work be performed remotely or online, if needed? Yes, but significant in-person time will be required.
Project Manager: Dr. Michael Balchanos
Action: Email your resume and interest to Dr. Michael Balchanos  (michael.balchanos@asdl.gatech.edu)
Office: Weber 105
Semesters: Fall 2021 and option for continuing Spring 2022
Time Commitment: About 5-10 hrs per week (flexible).
Number of Students Needed: 2-5
Citizenship Requirement: No
Details: In top racing series (such as Formula 1, NASCAR and IMSA GT), testing is limited due to regulatory or cost restrictions, and hence racing teams opt for simulator time to develop as well as set up their cars for each racetrack. Also known as Driver-in-the-Loop (DIL) Simulators, extremely accurate high-fidelity dynamic models of vehicle subsystems are needed, while vehicle level integration is key for allowing drivers to experience realistic driving conditions and offer accurate feedback to the team engineers. This project involves the development of detailed subsystem models in Modelica language, utilizing vehicle dynamics libraries and implemented in the Dymola M&S environment. We’re seeking for students who are passionate for motorsports and are familiar with automotive subsystems and technologies. Experience with working in Modelica language and model development in Dymola is preferred.


Project: Regulatory Gap Analysis for Electrified Powertrain Aircraft
Can this work be performed remotely or online, if needed? Yes
Project Manager: Dr. Evan Harrison
Action: Email your resume and interest to Dr. Evan (evan.harrison@asdl.gatech.edu)
Office: Weber 313A
Semesters: Fall 2021​
Time Commitment: About 5-10 hrs per week (flexible).
Number of Students Needed: 1-3
Citizenship Requirement: No
Details: As part of ongoing work on the multi-year Electrified Powertrain Flight Demonstration (EPFD) project, the Aerospace Systems Design Laboratory (ASDL) has been tasked with developing and deploying this model-based framework for assessing potential regulatory issues for emerging electric aircraft concepts. The EPFD team is searching for an available student to join these efforts. This student will work alongside the EPFD team to continue the ongoing development of the model-based regulatory framework and instantiate model-based representations of existing aircraft regulations, standards, and electric vehicle architectures.  Experience with model-based systems engineering and SysML preferred.


Project: Data-driven Small Body Characterization and Relative Navigation - DCSL
Can this work be performed remotely or online, if needed? Yes
Project Manager: Travis Driver
Action: Email your resume and interest to Travis Driver (travisdriver@gatech.edu)
Office: MK 414
Semesters: Fall 2021​
Time Commitment: About 5-10 hrs per week (flexible).
Number of Students Needed: 1-2
Citizenship Requirement: No
Details: The Dynamics and Control Systems Lab (DCSL) has been developing and implementing deep learning algorithms for characterization and relative navigation of small bodies (e.g., asteroids, comets). This research work will involve the development of a dataset of monocular images and other data products for training of convolutional neural networks for vision-based relative navigation. Experience with Python, MATLAB, and rigid body kinematics is required. Experience with TensorFlow/PyTorch is preferred.


Project: Multidisciplinary Analysis Toolkit - ASDL
Can this work be performed remotely or online, if needed? Yes
Project Manager: Dr. Jason Corman
Action: Email your resume and interest to Dr. Jason Corman (jason.corman@gatech.edu)
Office: Weber 315
Semesters: Fall 2021​
Time Commitment: About 5-10 hrs per week (flexible).
Number of Students Needed: 4-6
Citizenship Requirement: No
Details: The Aerospace Systems Design Laboratory has been developing a Python-based toolkit for automating the pre-processing and execution of multidisciplinary design frameworks for air vehicles. This research work will involve development and implementation of advanced configurations for physics-based aero-structural design environments and upgrading core capabilities for the Rapid Airframe Design Environment (RADE). Geometry and CAD capabilities are provided through a Python API for OpenCASCADE (pyOCCT), and there are additional open-source codes that will be included in the development project: AFEM, OpenVSP, OpenMDAO, TACS, and others. Experience with Python and object-oriented programming is preferred.


Project: ASDL GT Smart Campus – Merging Campus Data with 3D Visualization
Can this work be performed remotely or online, if needed? Yes
Project Manager: Dr. Scott Duncan
Action: Email your resume and interest to Dr. Scott Duncan (duncan@gatech.edu)
Office: Weber 306A
Semesters: Fall 2021​
Time Commitment: About 5-10 hrs per week (flexible).
Number of Students Needed: 1-2
Citizenship Requirement: No
Details: Work with GT Smart Campus team members to learn the latest tools for visualization of "built environment" systems (i.e., GT buildings, infrastructure, campus layout, etc,) and how to overlay them with various types of data sets regarding their use by humans and the loads and performance of energy and water systems. This will include the Kendeda Living Building (KBISD) and potentially other new campus construction projects. ASDL has access to massive amounts of data from KBISD and is building systems to ingest, analyze, and visualize it. In addition, the ASDL team has a Raspberry PiZero devices and sensors that are available as building blocks to create IoT sensors to be deployed into Weber and possibly the Living Building. Join us and help configure these devices to create data that will be used to help better understand of the behavior of campus infrastructure.


Project: Development of Python/Engineering Sketch Pad automation tool- ASDL
Does this research project allow for remote/online participation: Yes
Project Manager: Srujal Patel
Action: Email your resume, letter of interest, or any required info to Srujal Patel - srujal.patel@aerospace.gatech.edu
Office Number: Weber 308
Semester: Fall 2021
Time commitment: Negotiable
Citizenship restrictions: No​
Meet with project manager before registering: Yes
Number of Students Needed: 1-2
Brief description of project: Engineering Sketch Pad (ESP) is an open-source parameterized geometry modeler which allows for rapid generation of various computational design models with associative geometry. The tool is fully programming or script-based and hence is used to automate generation of parametric geometries for Multidisciplinary Design, Analysis and Optimization (MDAO) studies. In this research, students will use combination of Python and ESP to develop reconfigurable "master" models of Aerospace applications of interest which include fixed-wing and VTOL aircrafts, turbofan/open rotor engines, active-flow control devices etc. Prior experience in Solid and Surface modeling using commercial CAD applications such as CATIA, Solidworks etc. is essential. Students should have good understanding of Python, Object-Oriented Programming (preferably C++), and some prior experience in using GitHub.


Project: Development of Python tool for FEA File Creation and Modification​ - ASDL
Does this research project allow for remote/online participation: Yes
Project Manager: Dr. Adam Cox​
Office Number: Weber 120-A​
Semester: Fall 2021
Time commitment: negotiable
Citizenship restrictions: No​
Meet with project manager before registering: Yes
Number of Students Needed: 1-4
Brief description of project: MSC Nastran is the industry standard finite element analysis software. A package has been developed which can read, modify, and write input files for Nastran in Python, avoiding direct interaction with the cumbersome format of these files. However, Nastran has more capabilities than are currently implemented in this package. Students would help to expand the capability of the tool. Students should have some understanding of Python, object oriented programming, and git/GitHub. Understanding of FEA helpful but not required. Would enable students to learn more about Python, version control, text processing, OOP, unit tests, and finite element analysis.


Project: System Modeling Using SysML - ASDL
Can this work be performed remotely or online, if needed? Yes
Project Manager: Dr. Selcuk Cimtalay & Dr. Russell Peak
Action: Follow instructions on slide #10 in the “Model-Based Systems Engineering Information (pdf)” presentation (see “Additional information” below).​
Office: Weber 104
Semesters: at least one, could be several
Time Commitment: 4 hrs/week
Number of Students Needed:  1-15
Citizenship Requirement: varies
GPA Requirement: 3.5+ preferred; 3.2 minimum
Details: Multiple potential position types (depending on interests). Most, but not all, of our Systems Modeling Language (SysML) projects require US Persons, either US citizens or permanent residents
Requirements for the positions: A key requirement is an interest in SysML (no prior SysML experience required) and a willingness to learn and explore
Sample projects & external collaborators: Lockheed MBSE - CubeSat testbed – NASA MBSE Pathfinder initiative – US Navy (NAVAIR) Model-Centric Engineering (MCE) – UAV testbed – NASA JPL: model-based systems engineering (MBSE); model-based wikis; embedded s/w – Boeing: MBSE model complexity & health management.
Additional informationModel-Based Systems Engineering Information (pdf)


Project: Tomographic tunable diode laser spectroscopy for indirect noise measurements in gas turbine combustors.
Can this work be performed remotely or online, if needed? NO
Project Manager: Dr. Adam Steinberg
Action: Email your resume to Vedanth Nair (vedanth44@gatech.edu)
Office: GUG 447 (work will be conducted at the Ben Zinn Combustion Lab)
Semesters: Spring 2021 with potential for continuation 
Time Commitment: Approx. 9 hrs/week
Number of Students Needed: 1-2
Citizenship Requirement: NO
Details: Assist post-doctoral fellow in the construction and operation of a new experimental setup to measured 2D temperature fields at the exit of a gas turbine combustor. The setup consists of multiple intersecting tunable diode laser beams, the absorption of which is related to the concentration and temperature of water vapor along the beam path. Tasks include assembling the laser system, calibration, and assisting in measurements.


Project: High-pressure laminar flame burner for calibration of laser diagnostics
Can this work be performed remotely or online, if needed? NO
Project Manager: Dr. Adam Steinberg
Action: Email your resume to Vedanth Nair (vedanth44@gatech.edu)
Office: GUG 447 (work will be conducted at the Ben Zinn Combustion Lab)
Semesters: Spring 2021 with potential for continuation 
Time Commitment: Approx. 9 hrs/week
Number of Students Needed: 1-2
Citizenship Requirement: NO
Details: Assist graduate students in the design, assembly, and operation of a high-pressure laminar flame burner that will be used to calibrate laser diagnostics. Potential tasks include specifying flow components, CAD, piping assembly, and LabView programming.