People—UNM School of Engineering Faculty Involved in Aerospace

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Dr. Chaouki Abdallah, Professor and Chair, Electrical and Computer Engineering Department
Professor Abdallah's research includes reconfigurable systems and control. His recent projects include networked control systems as well as the control of distributed systems. He is also interested in mitigating delays in control and communication systems.

Dr. Christos Christodoulu, Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering
His main research interests are smart antennas, machine learning applications in electromagnetics, reconfigurable antennas, and RF/Photonic antennas. The primary objective of his work for AFRL is to develop reconfigurable antennas and RF systems for cognitive radio systems that can work (in real-time) with other devices across multi-bands, multi-standards or multi-channels by learning and adapting to the RF environment.

Dr. Carolin Fruh, Postdoctoral Fellow/ NRC Associate
Her research addresses the difficulty of identifying space debris objects, by focusing on the following aspects of object identification: a) Image processing: Cosmic ray filtering, linking of object image candidates to observation tracklets, b) Catalogue correlation: Correlation of observations with external (TLE format) and internal catalogues, c) Astrodynamics and Orbit Determination: Precision of catalogue orbits, orbit determination and orbit propagation, and d) Light Curves: Analysis of Light curve measurements of space debris objects, simulation of artificial light curves.

Dr. Walter Gerstle, Professor, Civil Engineering
The next generation of space-based and ground-based optical telescopes demands unprecedented structural support precision of the optical elements. Of concern is the ability to adjust optical element positions as well as the relative deformation of optical elements due to temperature changes and moisture changes. Pultruded carbon fiber epoxy (CFE) materials offer excellent thermal stability at reasonable cost. Their coefficient of thermal expansion is on the order of 0x10-6 to -1x10-6 per degree C. It is important to have the capability of determining and “tuning” the in-situ member-level CTE (having units of length per degree of temperature change) to a high level of precision. The response of pultruded CFE members to moisture change is less clear. It has been reported that moisture absorption in epoxy causes it to expand.
However, epoxy comprises only about 30% by volume of the CFE composite materials, and epoxy is at least an order of magnitude less stiff than carbon fiber. We are developing techniques to definitively measure and report the moisture expansion of pultruded CFE struts. Finally, we are investigating new methods for tuning in-situ struts to ensure their near-null-response to temperature and moisture changes.

Dr. Islam Hussein, Research Associate Professor, University of New Mexico
Dr. Islam Hussein received his PhD in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. Dr. Hussein is a National Academy of Sciences Senior Faculty Fellow with AFRL. He is the recipient of two ASEE Summer Faculty Fellowships in 2009 and 2010. His research interests are in the areas of hybrid estimation, situational awareness, and dynamical and control systems.

Dr. Sudharman K. Jayaweera, Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering

Dr. Tariq Khraishi, Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering
Areas of Expertise: Solid mechanics (computation and theory) in general, materials science and in particular studying structure-property relationships, defect and micromechanics of materials (e.g. the eigenstrain fields of inclusions), finite-element modeling, superplasticity of materials, dislocation Dynamics (DD) simulations, stresses in thin films (coherent and/or non-coherent interfaces) and critical thickness evaluation, fracture mechanics, biomechanics in general, experimental mechanics and materials science, computational fluid mechanics and in particular in relation to modeling biological fluids like blood flow.

Dr. Olga Lavrova, Research Assistant Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering

Dr. Claudia Luhrs, Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering
Nanostructured materials: novel synthetic pathways for their preparation (i.e. chemical and plasma/aerosol methodologies), characterization of their crystal structures, properties and reactivity. Her research has been centered mostly on ceramics but extended in recent years to the production of nanosized metal particles, and nano-scale ceramic/metal and metal/carbon composites. Application projects include the generation of thermally stable materials for catalysts, gas sensors, batteries,
supercapacitor, structural and high energy density nano-scale materials.

Dr. Arup K. Maji, Interim Dean of the UNM School of Engineering
Dr. Maji's research interests include precision structures, composite materials, nondestructive testing, optical sensors and experimental mechanics. Dr. Maji also served as a Senior Research Scientist at the Air Force Research laboratory in charge of developing technology for large deployable space structures and ultra-lightweight optics.

Dr. Marios S. Pattichis, Associate Professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Dr. Pattichis's research interests are in the area of digital image and video processing, including the development of dynamically reconfigurable architectures for digital image and video processing.

Dr. Svetlana V. Poroseva, Assistant Professor Mechanical Engineering
Professor Poroseva's research includes analysis of complex systems and stochastic processes, modeling and simulation of turbulent flows, survivability and reliability analysis, rotorcraft aerodynamics, wind energy, uncertainty quantification and multi-model/multi-agent simulations.

Dr. Y. L. Shen, Professor, Mechanical Engineering
Research Area:Predictive Simulations of Thermo-mechanical Integrity in Heterogeneous Micro- and Nano-structures
Micro- and nano-structured materials are finding increasing potential in applications under severe environments. Although the design and fabrication of new materials have been progressing at an unprecedented pace, a fundamental understanding of the underlying mechanics is lagging far behind. In this project we are developing simulation capabilities to predict the deformation and fracture behavior in micro- and nano-structured materials, where the thermo-mechanics is driven by the “mismatch” effect and interfacial behavior of the highly heterogeneous material systems. Specific forms of the structures under investigation include nano-composites and micro-devices under various mechanical and thermal loading conditions. We conduct multiscale modeling to parametrically study the effects of material properties, geometry, strain rate and loading mode on the evolution of overall response , deformation field, damage initiation and failure.

Dr. Mahmoud Taha, Associate Professor and Regent's Professor
Dr. Taha's research interests include nano materials, structural health monitoring, biomechnaics, and artificial intelligence for system modeling. His teaching interests include the design of concrete structures, steel structures, and wood and masonry; civil engineering materials; fiber reinforced polymers; fracture mechanics, and fuzzy logic.

Dr. Randy Truman, Professor, Mechanical Engineering

Dr. Peter Vorobieff, Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering and Associate Professor, Mathematics Statistics; Email: