|Full Name||Major||Tucker, Andrew||Aerospace Engineering|
In addition to the many undergraduate students working on projects at AggieSat Lab, graduate students participate as well. Graduate students' primary responsibilities are to provide oversight to undergraduate students as they design and build the satellites, and teach undergraduate students how to complete the various tasks required. They also devote time to working on their research theses and dissertations which are related to some aspect of AggieSat Lab or its satellites.
Our current graduate students include:
Andrew Tucker completed his Bachelors degree here at Texas A&M in Aerospace Engineering in May 2013, and is currently working towards his Masters degree. He worked on AggieSat2 and is working on AggieSat4, and he is the Chief Engineer for AggieSat Lab, and he is the point of contact with The Aerospace Corporation for the new ground site at the Riverside campus.
Recent graduate, Will Hafer completed his PhD degree "Sensitivity Methods and Orbital Pursuit Evasion" in Summer 2014. He received his undergraduate education at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, MA, where he studied Mechanical Engineering. After graduation, he worked for two engineering research and development companies, Foster-Miller, Inc. (now QinetiQ North America), and Infoscitex Corp., from 2003 to 2010, in positions of Staff and Project Engineer. During this time, he served as Program Manager and Principal Investigator of government SBIR and STTR research contracts, and developed technical focus areas in spacecraft thermal control, and integration of experimental components and subsystems onto Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV’s). He joined the Department of Aerospace Engineering at Texas A&M University as a graduate student in the fall of 2010, he completed his Masters degree "Improvement of PNP Problem Computational Efficiency for Known Target Geometry of Cubesats" in Spring 2012. He was selected as a prestigious Space Scholar with the Air Force Research Labs in Albuquerque, NM, in Summer 2013, and he presented a paper "Initial and Feedback Solutions for Orbital Pursuit Evasion Using a Homotopy Method,” at the American Astronautical Society Guidance, Navigation, and Control Conference, Breckenridge, CO, 31 January-5 February 2014. Will is presently employed as a guidance, navigation, and control engineer at Lockheed-Martin Space Systems Company in Denver, Colorado. He is in the science and exploration group, working on the OSIRIS REx mission, which is asteroid rendezvous and sample return. Of his new job, he notes: "In my first few days of learning, I've been struck by how much the spacecraft engineering environment here reminds me of AggieSat Lab."
Another Recent graduate, Angela McLelland completed her Masters degree "Simulation and Experimental Predictions for the Structural Response of a Satellite” in December 2013. She prior completed her undergraduate degree in Mechanical Engineering at Union College in Spring 2011. While at Union College, (1) Angela's team had an impressive finish at the annual SAE Aero East Competition, held the last weekend in April 2011 in Marietta, Marietta, Ga.. They placed fifth in a field of 75 top engineering schools from around the world. Union’s aircraft was one of only two in its class to have a 100 percent successful flight record in all six rounds of competition. Also, the plane lifted 22 pounds of payload, pretty close to matching the students’ engineering predictions for what the plane could safely lift. AND...there were only 3 people on her team! (2) Also, while at Union College, Angela had the opportunity of collaborating with electrical engineering faculty member, Helen Hanson, in order to analyze speech utterances. This process involved at iterative signal processing method in order to automatically clearly determine the onset and offset of spoken phrases. The results of this ongoing research will ultimately be utilized to better synthesize artificial voice boxes to obtain smoother sounding transitional speech. As a result of this work, she was able to present her findings at the 159th Meeting of the Acoustical Society of America in Baltimore, MD as well as coauthor, 'Prosodic analysis of subglottal pressure contours.' in the Journal of the Acoustical Society of America 127, 1852 (2010). (3) Additionally, while at Union College and as a NASA summer intern at Kennedy Space Center, Angela had an opportunity to work with the Boeing Company’s structural design team. Her primary task was to complete the yearly, required inspections of operating ground support equipment. These condition assessments required close collaboration with both design and operational engineers. Once a system’s walk-down was completed, she generated a summary report to document nonconformities as well as recommend the appropriate corrective action. Her secondary objective at NASA was to assist in engineering design and drafting aspects of the Constellation Project’s ground support equipment. This internship was funded through the New York Space Grant Consortium and proved to be a rewarding and educational employment for her. Angela is presently employed at SpaceX in Florida.
Another recent graduate, Mr. John Graves helped start AggieSat Lab as an undergraduate student when it was founded in 2005! He has been involved in every mission with the Lab, has contributed to every subsystem, and provided leadership in ensuring the Lab has achieved its goals. He completed his Bachelors degree in Spring 2007 and his Masters degree “Small Satellite Applications of Commercial Off the Shelf Radio Frequency Integrated Circuits” in Fall 2011, both in Aerospace Engineering, and then became the Lab Manager for AggieSat Lab. He served as Graduate Student Representative for the Brazos Valley Shuttle Project (bring a retiring Space Shuttle to College Station) in 2010-11 and as a Member of the Aerospace Student Undergraduate Advisory Council in 2007. He won the TAMU Aerospace Department Larry Anderson Senior Achievement Award in 2007 and the Distinguished Student Award from the Dwight Look College of Engineering in 2003. He was the Scholarship Winner at the 2010 8th Responsive Space Conference with the paper entitled “The Role of Responsive Space in Educating Students,” AIAA-RS8-2010-1003. Presently, John is a Communications Radio frequency and On-orbit Network Utilization Specialist (CRONUS) flight controller for the International Space Station with Cimarron Inc. at NASA Johnson Space Center.