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Honors |  Research Updates 


Max Spetzler selected as the finalist for the 2016 SciTech GNC Graduate Student Paper Competition

Posted on  16  November 2015

PhD student and ADV-CTRL graduate research assistant, Max Spetzler's research paper titled "Local Linear Controllability and Observability Analysis of Nonlinear Systems with Continuation Methods" has been selected as the finalist for the 2016 AIAA Guidance, Navigation & Control Conference Graduate Student Paper Competition. Finalists are selected after two rounds of reviews. The final competition will be held in January at the 2016 SciTech Forum in San Diego. 

Congratulations, Max!

Research Updates

Air Force Research Laboratory Short Term Aerospace Research  and Development Contract

27 July 2015 - 31 December 2015
Total award: $50, 334

Posted on  1  October 2015

Complexity of semi and increasingly autonomous aerospace systems has created a need for formal validation methods that can identify fatal errors early in the design process. Professor Narang with the support of the Aerospace Systems Directorate/Air Force Research Laboratory is investigating a new model based validation method encompassing level set theory, computational complexity theory, dynamical systems theory and bifurcation methods to eliminate the need for finite state abstraction in model checking algorithms. This advance offers large potential to reduce the computational time of evaluating reachability sets in large dimensional autonomous systems.

ADV-CTRL's research on  alternate means of showing compliance with airworthiness certification regulations receives support from Joint Center of Aeropsace Technology Innovation

1 July 2015 - 30 June 2016
Total award: $77,097

Current certification methodology for transport category airplanes requires the system to be "fully" tested through combination of wind tunnel and full scale flight tests and Monte Carlo forward time simulations, reaching over 3000-5000 hours. The collaborative effort between Professor Narang, Certification and Safety Office of Safran Engineering Services with Dr. Christine Belcastro (NASA Langley Research Center) as advisor under support from the Joint Center for Aerospace Technology Innovation is focused on inventing an alternate means of showing compliance by leveraging benefits of continuation methods to curtail the developmental costs. The savings from continuation methods are two-fold (i) eliminating need for long hours of forward time simulations and (ii) preventing vehicle loss by predicting critical portions in the flight envelope early in the certification process. These savings are being quantified under this support by applying continuation method based algorithm to NASA's AirStar 5.5% dynamically scaled aircraft model and comparing its insights with experimental flight test data.

Washington Research Foundation Capital has invested in Professor Narang's research 

to identify causal factors for loss of control to improve overall safety in general aviation sector. Every year, for the last two decades, on average three general aviation crashes occur every day in the United States. The Small Airplane Revitalization Act (SARA) passed by the Congress in November 2013 gives the FAA until December 2015 to modify the process of certifying and maintaining small aircraft while providing a way for owners to verify performance of the aircraft.
Total award: $39,900