Problem 1 (9 points): Throughout the University of Illinois a number of aerospace engineers have been honored with their names on the walls. Find the names of 3 engineers in 3 different buildings. The engineers must have graduated at least 10 years apart. List the 3 names, and location (building and floor) where their names appear. At least one of the names must have been an aerodynamicist or related to the aircraft industry. At least one must have graduated from the Aerospace (Aeronautical and Astronautical pre 2004) Engineering department. Three astronauts do NOT count.
Kevin Zhou: Great Lakes Region Award (Loomis)
Jawed Karim: Distinguished Achievement Award (Siebel)
John Houbolt: Illini Achievement Award (Talbot)
Problem 2 (6 points): Choose 2 of the 3 engineers and describe their career accomplishments and why they were honored here at U of I. Each description must be at least 300 words.
John Houbolt was an aerospace engineer credited with leading the team behind the lunar orbit rendezvous (LOR) mission mode, a concept that was used to successfully land humans on the Moon and return them to Earth. This flight path was first endorsed by Wernher von Braun in June 1961 and was chosen for Apollo program in early 1962. The critical decision to use LOR was viewed as vital to ensuring that Man reached the Moon by the end of the decade as proposed by President John F. Kennedy. In the process, LOR saved time and billions of dollars by efficiently using existing rocket technology. He was the first recipient of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics' (AIAA) Structures, Structural Dynamics, & Materials Award in 1968, and in 1972 was awarded the AIAA Dryden Research Lectureship Award. He was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 1990, and was awarded the Spirit of St. Louis Medal of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers in 2000. He was also awarded honorary doctorates by ETH Zurich in 1975; by Clarkson University in 1990; and by the University of Illinois in 2005. In 2007, the University of Illinois awarded him the Illini Achievement Award, their highest honor. He is additionally commemorated in the city of Joliet: The street fronting Joliet Junior College, which he attended, was renamed Houbolt Road; a mural in Joliet Union Station includes a Lunar Module, in reference to his work for NASA; and a wing of the Joliet Area Historical Museum became a permanent exhibit to celebrate his achievements. Houbolt's technical career was extremely diversified, including studies of dynamic loads and aeroelasticity of aircraft and space vehicles, and special problems of space flight. He became deeply involved in theoretical analyses of the phenomenon known as propeller whirl flutter, which had caused the catastrophic crashes of early models of the Lockheed Electra propeller-driven civil transport in the early 1960s.
Jawed Karim was granted with the Computer Science Distinguished Achievement Award which honors computer science graduates who have made professional and technical contributions that bring distinction to themselves, the department, and the University. He left campus prior to graduating to become an early employee at PayPal, but continued his coursework, earning his bachelor's degree in computer science. He is known as an entrepreneur and tech startup mentor who co-founded YouTube. He is the first person to upload a video to the site. After co-founding the company and developing the YouTube concept and website with Chad Hurley and Steve Chen, Karim enrolled as a graduate student in computer science at Stanford University while acting as an adviser to YouTube. When the site was introduced in February 2005, Karim agreed not to be an employee and simply be an informal adviser, and that he was focusing on his studies. He also helped develop the real-time antifraud systems for PayPal. With Y Ventures, he helps entrepreneurs to move their innovative products into the marketplace. In October 2006, Karim gave a lecture about the history of YouTube at the University of Illinois' annual ACM Conference entitled YouTube: From Concept to Hyper-growth. In his lecture, he mentioned Wikipedia as being an innovative social experiment. Karim returned again to the University of Illinois in May 2007 as the 136th and youngest Commencement Speaker in the school's history. In March 2008, Karim launched a venture fund called Youniversity Ventures with partners Keith Rabois and Kevin Hartz. Karim is one of Airbnb's first investors, investing in that company's initial Seed round in April 2009. On November 6, 2013, YouTube began requiring that commenting on its videos be done via a Google+ account, a move that was widely opposed by the YouTube community. An online petition to revert the change garnered over 240,000 signatures.
Problem 3. Choose another aerospace engineer who spent the majority of his or her career in industry that did NOT graduate from the University of Illinois and describe their career accomplishments. Description must be at least 400 words. Explain why you chose this person.
Elon Musk, known as the founder, CEO, and lead designer of the Space X, an aerospace manufacturer and space transport services company the co-founder, CEO, and product architect of Tesla, Inc. Elon Musk was the second entrepreneur in the Silicon Valley (the first one was James H. Clark) who managed to create three companies with the market cap of more than $1 billion – PayPal, SpaceX, and Tesla Motors. Elon Musk dedicates himself to space and alternative energy technologies. He plays by some different rules and does that quite successfully. The distinctive personality traits of Elon Musk are perseverance, critical thinking, accurate self-analysis and hard work (he works 80-100 hours per week). Elon Musk was fascinated by the opportunity of colonizing Mars and created Mars Oasis. The goal of the project was to create automated greenhouses, which in the future could have become a basis for a self-sustaining ecosystem. The main problem was an enormous delivery cost of greenhouses to Mars. Musk even tried to order launch vehicles from Russian Federation and discussed that with Russian officials, but he decided not to make a deal with them. Later Musk came up with an idea to design his own reusable launch vehicles and spaceships. He moved to Canada when he was 17 to attend Queen's University. He transferred to the University of Pennsylvania two years later, where he received an economics degree from the Wharton School and a degree in physics from the College of Arts and Sciences. He began a Ph.D. in applied physics and material sciences at Stanford University in 1995 but dropped out after two days to pursue an entrepreneurial career.
I chose him because he was daring to dream and pursue the unimaginable, and he is revolutionizing transportation both on earth and in space by launching the idea of commercial rocket travel, BFR (Big Falcon Rocket). He is obsessed with traveling between any two points on Earth in less than 30 minutes and convinced that no trip between any two cities on the planet should last longer than an episode of The Big Bang Theory.
Problem 4 (4 points): Choose another aerospace engineer who spent the majority of his or her career conducting research and describe their career accomplishments. Description must be at least 400 words. Explain why you chose this engineer.
Scott R. White was recognized globally as an expert in autonomous materials. His research group at the Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology at the U. of I. developed self-healing plastics, electronics, batteries and coatings; coatings and materials that indicate when they are damaged or strained; self-destructing devices to reduce electronic waste; and many other innovations to make materials safer and more reliable on both the micro and macro scale. White developed several types of self-healing and adaptive materials. For example, he designed materials embedded with microcapsules that rupture when cracked or damaged, filling the cracks and “healing” the plastic or circuit. He also developed microcapsule technology to make lithium-ion batteries longer-lasting and less likely to rupture or burst into flame. Not content to be limited to one self-healing pathway, White’s group developed vascularized materials, much like a biological circulatory system. The vasculature enabled his group to further develop plastics that not only heal cracks, but also can regenerate missing portions. White’s group also explored the use of mechanophores to develop polymers and coatings that change colors to indicate damage, strain, cracks or scratches. Most recently, the group developed a polymer-curing process for manufacturing strong, lightweight parts for airplanes or vehicles using tens of millions of times less energy. He earned a doctorate in engineering mechanics at the Pennsylvania State University in 1990, joining the faculty at the U. of I. the same year. He held more than 40 patents and co-founded two startup companies. He received widespread recognition for his work, including a Humboldt Research Award in 2013, the American Society for Composites Outstanding Research Award in 2014 and Scientific American magazine's “SciAm 50” award in 2007. He also received multiple teaching and mentorship awards for his work with students at the U. of I. His internationally recognized research had significant impact in both the academic community and commercial sector. Scott founded Autonomic Materials Incorporated (AMI), a Champaign-based startup company focused on developing self-healing coatings. He was also a founding partner of CU Aerospace, LLC, a research and development company based in Champaign. Born in Kansas City, Missouri on February 2, 1963 and raised in Harrisonville, Missouri, White obtained a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering from Missouri Institute of Science and Technology. He continued his studies at University of Washington and Pennsylvania State University, where he earned a master's degree and doctorate, respectively. White began teaching at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign in 1990, and was eventually named Donald B. Willett Professor in Aerospace Engineering. In 2013, he was awarded a Humboldt Research Award. His research interests included Composite materials, processing of polymers and composites, bio-inspired materials, multifunctional materials, novel processing techniques, process modeling, health monitoring, self-healing composites, energy storage materials, mechanical behavior of polymers and composites. I chose him because his devotion to research has inspired me not only his pioneering work of self-healing materials, but also because of his fight against cancer for over a number of years, but throughout this process, he managed to forge ahead in his research pursuits.
Problem 5 (4 points): In 200 words or less describe the intent of this assignment.
This assignment was meant for us to realize how many great alumni we had in the past at University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign, and many aerospace engineers were among them. Aerospace Engineering Department also has a long history of preparing students an all-encompassing educational experience in both areas of entrepreneurship and researches. It is important for us to keep in mind what a good Aerospace Engineer looks like in the future pursuit of our careers, and that we also have so many great examples such as John Houbolt ahead of us, either ending up conducting researches in a research group or pursing position in a company. And in such areas, it is always nice to know those who are successful and eminent like Elon Musk, achieving his dream with dare and devotion. Additionally, University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign also had many great alumni engineers in other fields with great achievements and earned honor.
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