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MAE Colloquium - Autumn 2013

The Aerospace Engineering Colloquium (AE 598) is a required course that satisfies the professional development component of the Master of Aerospace Engineering (MAE). MAE students are required to complete nine (9) credits of colloquium participation to satisfy the degree requirements. However, all students and faculty are welcome to attend.

Topics may include current research and advances in aerospace technology as well as other themes relevant to the professional development of aerospace engineers. To earn credit for this course, students must complete a required set of writing assignments.

Faculty Coordinator: Prof. Kristi Morgansen

September 26 - Special Session

Master of Aerospace Engineering: New Student Orientation

Overview of the Master of Aerospace Engineering (MAE) degree.

View Audio/Video (Adobe Connect)
Download Slides (pdf)
Download Example Degree Plans for Autumn 2013 Start (pdf)


September 30 - First Meeting

MAE Colloquium Overview

Welcome and Introduction to MAE Colloquium

Download Slides (pdf)
Download Writing Assignment Details (pdf)


October 7

Basics of Intellectual Property

Whether revered or reviled, intellectual property is often the subject of headline-grabbing news stories. But what exactly is it?

This talk is designed to inform students about the basics of intellectual property, including what it is and the process for obtaining it. Discussion will focus on patents and the requirements for protecting an inventive concept. Mr. Graham will also describe the services provided by the University of Washington Center for Commercialization to help members of the UW community make (or avoid) headlines.

Suggested Reading:

Innovation & Infringement: The Wright Brothers, Glenn H. Curtis, and the Aviation Patent Wars (link)


October 14

Nonlinear Phononic Crystals: A New Building Block for Designing Structural and Sensory Systems


November 4

No Colloquium This week


November 12 - Special TUESDAY Session, 4:30pm!

On Blade Control of Rotor Vibration, Noise, and Performance - Just Around the Corner?

A concise review of the evolution of active control approaches for vibration reduction in rotorcraft that have resulted in Higher Harmonic Control (HHC) and Individual Blade Control (IBC) will be presented. It will be shown that despite the success of these approaches, demonstrated by both full scale wind tunnel and flight tests, these implementations have not managed to earn their way onto a production helicopter. A more recent alternative, On Blade Control (OBC) is defined as a special implementation of IBC, where the control surfaces are located on the rotating blade and each blade has its own controller. The evolution and description of four OBC devices: (1) the actively controlled flap (ACF), (2) the active twist rotor (ATR), (3) the active tip (AT), and the (4) deployable Gurney flap, or microflap (MF), is presented. A detailed outline of an aeroelastic response modeling capability used to simulate active vibration and noise reduction using flaps or microflaps is presented. Next, selected scaled wind tunnel model tests are shown to produce excellent insight on the operational and modeling aspects of these systems. Full scale wind tunnel and flight tests are presented as culmination of the sustained research effort invested in research on OBC. The talk concludes with lessons learned and speculation about the potential implementation of OBC on production rotorcraft.

Suggested Readings:

(1) Friedmann, Peretz P., “Rotary-Wing Aeroelasticity: Current Status and Future Trends,” AIAA Journal, Volume 42, Number 10, October 2004, pp. 1953-1972 (20).
(2) Patt, Dan; Liu, Li; Friedmann, Peretz P., “Rotorcraft Vibration Reduction and Noise Prediction Using a Unified Aeroelastic Response Simulation,” Journal of the American Helicopter Society, Volume 50, Number 1, 1 January 2005, pp. 95-106 (12).
(3) Patt, Dan; Liu, Li; Friedmann, Peretz P., “Simultaneous Vibration and Noise Reduction in Rotorcraft Using Aeroelastic Simulation,” Journal of the American Helicopter Society, Volume 51, Number 2, 1 April 2006 , pp. 127-140 (14).


November 18

How Social Media Can Help (and not Hurt) You in Your Professional Life

Increasingly, curating your online identity can add important elements to your professional life. You can build professional networks, expand your circles, keep up on the emerging issues in your field, and become an active contributor. Whether or not you are on the active job market or simply working to grow and stay fresh in your career, knowing how your online presence can work for you will help. We will share several examples from students and professionals, and discuss what works best in your field.

Suggested Reading:

An Introduction to Social Media for Scientists (PLOS Biology)


November 25

Pondus Hydrogenii - The Power of Hydrogen

Hydrogen is the high-performance fuel of choice for aerospace applications due to higher specific energy and increased utility over conventional chemical fuels. However, the extreme temperatures or pressures required to increase the energy density of hydrogen present substantial engineering challenges and opportunities. We will begin with quantum mechanical characteristics unique to hydrogenic molecules at cryogenic temperatures that have significant and tunable effects on macroscale thermophysical properties. My laboratory has, so far, utilized these traits for catalytic pressurization and vapor cooled shielding technologies. The heavy hydrogenic molecules of deuterium and tritium also exhibit these traits that can be exploited for the fueling of fusion energy machines. We are completing the development of a diagnostic twin-screw extruder for the continuous production of solidified thermonuclear fuel pellets. With this machine operational, plans are in place to continuously produce hydrogenic fuel mixtures, including cryogenic clathrates, which have energy densities up to two times higher than conventional RP-1. We will conclude with eventual system level testing of these hydrogen fuels in Genii– the first liquid hydrogen fueled drone completely designed, constructed, and operated by university students.

Suggested Readings:

(1) Musk Scorns Hydrogen Vehicles Seen as Tesla Credit Threat (
(2) Liquid Hydrogen - The Fuel of Choice for Space Exploration (


December 2

Ready for Take Off: Positioning Washington as the Worldwide Center of Aerospace Innovation, Design, and Manufacturing

Today's presentation will focus on current and future directions of the aerospace industry in Washington state, including state support for new projects and production, such as the Boeing 777X, and emergent subsectors such as UAVs, aviation biofuels, and commercial space flight.

Suggested Readings:

(1) Washington Aerospace Industry Strategy (Governor's Office of Aerospace, May 2013)
(2) Washington State Aerospace Industry: Economic Impact Study (Washington Aerospace Partnership, November 2013)