University of Maryland Department of Aerospace Engineering
Newsletter | Spring 2016
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Winter 2016 Newsletter

A team of researchers in the A. James Clark School of Engineering at the University of Maryland say their recent discovery of a new type of fire tornado they call a ‘blue whirl’ has garnered media attention for it's potential to lead to beneficial new approaches in reduced carbon emissions and improved oil spill cleanup. Most recently, the research was featured in the November-December 2016 issue of American Scientist.

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The University of Maryland Gamera Team has once again achieved new heights, this time by successfully lifting a helicopter and passenger through the sole use of solar power on August 26, 2016.

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The UMD Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Test Site and University of Maryland Shore Regional Health conducted the State’s first civil unmanned aerial delivery of simulated medical cargo. UMD engineers flew a Talon 120LE fixed wing aircraft across the Chesapeake Bay with saline solution simulating four vials of Epinephrine to demonstrate the key role that UAS' can play in emergency situations.

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Terrapin Rockets is a student group at the University of Maryland that designs and builds high performance model rockets. Currently, the team consists of 90 members who represent various majors, backgrounds, and experience levels when it comes to building rockets. This year they're expanding our student group, and they need your help to build new and more advanced rockets! 


Department News

Office of Naval Research Awards $2M to Maryland Led Team for Basic Research Challenge Program: SEA-STAR: Soft Echinoderm-Inspired Appendages for Strong Tactile Amphibious Robots

UMD Faculty, Student and Alumni Receive 2016 ASME Ephrahim Garcia Best Paper Award

UMD Donates Helicopter, Loans Wind Tunnel to College Park Aviation Museum

Communicating Across Unmanned Aircraft Systems in a Disaster

University of Maryland Center for Orbital Debris Education Hosts Second Workshop on Orbital Debris

Faculty News

WIA Recognizes Bowden with Aerospace Educator Award

Paley Presents at NAE 2016 Frontiers of Engineering Symposium

Wereley Receives UMD Office of Community Engagement “Making a Difference” Award

Sedwick Receives 2016 A. James Clark School Engineering Faculty Service Award

Student News

Students Cinch First Place in 33rd Annual AHS Student Design Competition

This win marks the 14th win for a UMD team in the past 20 years of AHS competitions.

Alumni News

Mike White (B.S. '80, M.S. '81) appointed Sector Head for Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Lab's Air and Missile Defense Sector. He was formerly the Mission Area Executive for the Air and Missile Defense Mission Area.

Alumni Frontin and Stebbins Awarded NASA Fellowships


Thank you to the many alumni, friends and corporate partners who have supported the department over the past year. Donations and support like this enables us enhance and expand the experiential and research opportunities we are able to provide our students.

Alumnus William Cooper Gilbert (B.S. Mechanical Engineering '16) felt that he benefited so much from his time spent in UMD's Balloon Payload Program working as an operations director with Professor Mary Bowden, that in 2016 he established a merit-based scholarship to support students in the program.

Looking for ways you can support Aerospace Engineering at Maryland?

Consider donating to the Aerospace Engineering Chair's Fund for Undergraduate Education. This fund supports initiatives and awards for undergraduates such as awards, student team materials, conference and competition travel and student grants.

Or contact Jennifer Schwartz, Senior Director, Corporate & Foundation Relations, at 301-405-8289 or
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