Aerospace Engineering - Curriculum 608 (DL)

Program Officer

CDR Caleb MacDonald

Code 74, Watkins Hall, Room 107

(831) 656-2033, DSN 756-2033

caleb.macdonald@nps.edu

Academic Associate

Joshua H. Gordis, Ph.D.

Code ME/Go, Watkins Hall, Room 313

(831) 656-2866, DSN 756-2866

jgordis@nps.edu

Brief Overview

The objective of this program is to provide graduate education, primarily in the field of Aerospace Engineering, in order to produce graduates with the technical competence to operate and maintain modern military aerospace systems.

The Aerospace Engineering program is designed to meet the specific needs of the U.S. Military, U.S. Coast Guard, and international partners with a broad-based graduate education in Aerospace Engineering with a focus on missile design, autonomous systems, and space systems. The program is intended to be completed within 36 months, assuming one course or thesis slot per quarter.

This program gives the student a broad aerospace engineering education in the areas of aerodynamics, flight mechanics, propulsion, flight structures, astronautical systems and systems integration. Additionally, officers receive graduate level instruction in aerospace systems design.

An original research project resulting in a finished thesis, or additional course work and a project is an integral part of the curriculum.

Requirements for Entry

A baccalaureate degree from a school that has Institutional Accreditation is required, preferably in an engineering discipline. While an undergraduate degree in engineering is preferred, special preparatory programs can accommodate officers with other backgrounds.

The following are eligible for this program:

  • U.S. Military Officers & Enlisted Personnel
  • U.S. Government Civilians
  • Select Department of Defense Contractors
  • Qualified International Personnel

Convenes

Fall, Winter, Spring or Summer.

Program Length

36 months/12 quarters

Degree

Requirements for the Master of Science in Aerospace Engineering - MSAE or a Master of Science in Engineering Science with a major in Aerospace Engineering – MSES(AE) are met as a milestone enroute to satisfying the educational skill requirements of the curricular program. There must be a minimum of 32 quarter hours of credits in 3000 and 4000 level courses, including a minimum of 12 quarter hours at the 4000 level. Of the 32 quarter hours at least 24 quarter-hours must be in courses offered by the MAE Department.

Graduation research requirements: a thesis (16 credit hours) with 32 credit hours (a total of 8 grad course) or the chair can approve an optional research project (8 credit hours) with 40 credit hours (a total of 10 grad courses).

Typical Course of Study

Upon entry into the program students will typically enroll in one course per quarter to be taken via distance learning. Typically, students may stack certificates to complete the coursework requirement of either 8 or 10 courses. In addition to the Aero tracks of Aerospace Engineering and Applied Trajectory Optimization, three specialty tracks within the course of study are also offered: Structures, Fluid Thermodynamics and Robotics Engineering. The program of study for each student will be submitted for approval by the Chairman of the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering.

Aerospace Engineering (Certificate 118 Track)

Students must take four of these six courses to complete the certificate:

Course NumberTitleCreditsLecture HoursLab Hours
ME3205Missile Aerodynamics

4

1

ME3611Mechanics of Solids II

4

0

ME4703Missile Flight and Control

4

1

ME4704Missile Design

3

2

ME4751Combat Survivability, Reliability and Systems Safety Engineering

4

1

AE4452Advanced Missile Propulsion

4

1

Applied Trajectory Optimization (Certificate 299 Track)

Course NumberTitleCreditsLecture HoursLab Hours
AE3820Advanced Mechanics and Orbital Robotics

3

2

AE3830Aerospace Guidance and Control

3

2

AE4850Dynamic Optimization

3

2

AE4881Aerospace Trajectory Planning and Guidance

2

4

Robotics Engineering (Certificate 223 Track)

Course NumberTitleCreditsLecture HoursLab Hours
ME3420Computational Foundations for Robotics

3

2

ME4800/AE4800Machine Learning for Autonomous Operations

3

2

ME4828Fundamental GNC Algorithms of Autonomous Robotics

3

2

EC4310Fundamentals of Robotics

3

2

Structures (Certificate 122 Track)

Course NumberTitleCreditsLecture HoursLab Hours
ME4731Engineering Design Optimization

4

0

ME3521Mechanical Vibration

3

2

ME4613Finite Element Methods

4

0

ME3611Mechanics of Solids II

4

0

Thermodynamics/Fluids (Certificate 123 Track)

Student must take four of these seven courses to complete the certificate:

Course NumberTitleCreditsLecture HoursLab Hours
ME4420Advanced Power and Propulsion

4

0

ME3450Computational Methods in Mechanical Engineering

3

2

ME4220Viscous Flow

4

0

ME3201Applied Fluid Mechanics

4

1

ME4101Advanced Thermodynamics

4

0

AE4502Supersonic and Hypersonic Flows

4

0

Educational Skill Requirements (ESRs)
Aerospace Engineering Program – Curriculum 608
Subspecialty Code: None

The ESRs consist of a core of prescribed aerospace engineering skills, which all graduates must acquire; plus specialization options of advanced topics in missile design, autonomous systems, or rotorcraft, which the student may pursue as electives.

1.    AEROSPACE STRUCTURES AND MATERIALS: Be able to apply U.S. military standards and practices to analyze structural components of missiles systems & autonomous vehicles, using engineering analytic methods on idealized models and automated finite element methods on realistic models to determine stresses, strains, deformations and appropriate limiting conditions of yielding, fracture, buckling and fatigue.

2. FLIGHT MECHANICS: Be able to calculate all performance parameters for rotorcraft, military autonomous aircraft, and missile systems to determine their longitudinal and lateral-directional, static and dynamic stability characteristics. Be able to analyze and design aircraft and missile guidance and control systems, including feedback stabilization schemes and stochastic processes, using classical and modern control techniques.

3. AIRCRAFT AND MISSILE PROPULSION: Understand the principles and operating characteristics of fixed wing, rotorcraft and missile propulsion engines and be able to analyze the performance of rocket motor and turbines through knowledge of the behavior and design characteristics of the individual components. Be able to calculate performance parameters used in engine selection and know the state-of-the-art reasons for limitations on gas turbine engine performance, as well as the potential for future gains in the field. Be able to analyze the performance of rockets and ramjets through knowledge of the behavior of individual components, and be able to make steady-state, internal ballistic calculations for solid rocket motors.

4. AERODYNAMICS: Be able to use classical analytic, experimental and modern computational techniques of subsonic and supersonic aerodynamics, including laminar and turbulent boundary-layer viscous effects, without heat addition, to calculate internal flow properties through inlets, nozzles and engines and external air flow pressure distributions over wings, canards, tails, and other lifting surfaces to determine the resulting lift, drag and pitching moment.

5. INFORMATION PROCESSING: Be able to use current computer methods to solve aerospace engineering problems and possess knowledge of the application of dedicated avionic and systems computers on board military aircraft.

6. ENGINEERING MATHEMATICS: Demonstrate analytic ability to apply differential and integral calculus, ordinary and partial differential equations, vector calculus, matrix algebra, probability and statistics and numerical analysis in the development of engineering theory and its application to engineering problems.

7. ELECTRICAL ENGINEERING: Understand basic electrical circuits, systems and electronic devices as a foundation for interfacing mechanical and electronic systems in aerospace systems.

8. SYSTEMS DESIGN: Be able to integrate all of the disciplines of aerospace engineering into a design of a missile or autonomous system or rotorcraft in response to a realistic set of military requirements, specifications, constraints and cost limitations. The design must include considerations for safety, reliability, maintainability and survivability.

9. RESEARCH, DEVELOPMENT, TEST, AND EVALUATION: Apply principles of project scoping, planning, design and execution to investigate a current research, development, test or evaluation problem of interest to the Department of Defense that culminates in the publication of a thesis.