Department of Aerospace Engineering

Aerospace Engineering is a complex, rapidly changing field that includes aerodynamics, structures and materials, propulsion, dynamics and control, and astrodynamics. The primary application of aerospace engineering is to design and develop flight vehicles, such as aircraft, missiles, spacecraft and satellites. Aerospace engineering is also important and applicable to other vehicles and systems, such as rotorcraft, submarines, automobiles, wind turbines, advanced robotics, re-entry vehicles, exotic materials and computational simulations.

The mission of the Aerospace Engineering program is

  1. to provide students with a quality undergraduate and graduate education for the State of Texas and the nation through an innovative educational program;
  2. to advance the science and aerospace engineering knowledge base through basic and applied research, inventions, technologies and solutions to aerospace problems; and
  3. to serve the aerospace engineering profession by preparing leaders for leadership in the creation, design and operation of the next generation aerospace systems.

To achieve this mission, the educational objectives established by the Aerospace Engineering undergraduate program are to produce graduates whose expected accomplishments within three to five years of graduation are

  1. to have successful careers in industry, private practice, or government, or have pursued advanced graduate studies;
  2. to be skilled practitioners who apply their knowledge and skills to solve relevant engineering problems in the aerospace or a related profession; and
  3. to function well in teams, communicate well, continue enhancing their professional competence, and understand the impact of engineering solutions.

To carry out these educational objectives, the goals of the program are

  1. using a high quality faculty, to provide a comprehensive aerospace engineering education that develops in students the fundamental skills necessary for the design, synthesis, analysis and research development of aircraft, spacecraft and other high technology flight systems; and
  2. to prepare students for the aerospace engineering profession and related fields by developing the attributes needed, so that they can contribute successfully to society and to the engineering profession now and in the future.

The department offers a Bachelor of Science in Aerospace Engineering with Honors degree option. This option was proposed by our students and implemented for our students. Very few programs across the country offer this type of experience within Aerospace Engineering. You will be part of an honors community and be provided with the opportunity to enhance your learning experience through one-on-one research with a faculty mentor, introduction to advanced aerospace theories, and much more. The department also offers a Fast Track program, which is tailored for high-achieving undergraduate students who wish to extend their knowledge and gain an edge by earning a Master of Engineering (MEng) degree. Fast Track allows qualified students to earn up to nine hours of credit toward their Aerospace Engineering undergradaute and graduate degrees. Consequently, through Fast Track a student can earn a MEng degree in two semesters beyond their undergraduate degree.

Laboratories supplement theoretical studies in the major disciplines in the department. Numerous wind tunnels for low-speed and supersonic aerodynamic studies, a jet engine test facility, numerous research aircraft, a flight simulator, a satellite laboratory with Integrated Concurrent Engineering Capability, a robotics laboratory, and state-of-the-art materials and structures testing equipment are available, equipped with modern instrumentation. The department and the University also provide an extensive array of computing resources.

Students are encouraged to enrich their undergraduate experience through a variety of ways in the department, including co-op and internship positions, student competition design projects, and even undergraduate research. In addition, students have the opportunity to study abroad or participate in an international exchange program.

The department also offers programs of study leading to the MEng, MS, and PhD degrees (see the Texas A&M University Graduate and Professional Catalog). The Bachelor of Science in Aerospace Engineering degree is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET, www.abet.org. Before commencing course work in the major, students must be admitted to the major or have the approval of the department.

AERO 101 Introduction to Aerospace Engineering

Credit 1. 1 Lecture Hour.

Overview of aerospace engineering and the aerospace industry, including requirements and assignments of an aerospace engineer, vehicle configurations and missions, aerodynamics, structures and materials, dynamics and control, simulation and testing, and aerospace engineering in the future.
Prerequisites: ENGR 111, MATH 151, PHYS 218, or registration therein.

AERO 201 Introduction to Flight

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours. 1 Lab Hour.

Standard atmosphere; basic aerodynamic theory; isentropic flow; airfoil and wing descriptions; distributed load systems; static equilibrium; free body diagrams; wing structures; elementary aerospace vehicle performance; aircraft stability and control; experiential introduction to aerospace engineering.
Prerequisites: Admitted to major degree sequence in aerospace engineering; grade of C or better ENGR 111, MATH 151, MATH 152, PHYS 218; grade of C or better in MATH 251 or MATH 253 or registration therein.

AERO 210 Introduction to Aerospace Mechanics

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours. 1 Lab Hour.

Planar kinematics; fundamentals of Newtonian mechanics; system of particles and rigid bodies; the effect of friction forces on motion and static equilibrium; rectilinear and curvilinear motion of particles; translational momentum; moments of inertia; angular momentum; planar motion of rigid bodies; impact dynamics; situations involving variable mass; introduction to orbital mechanics.
Prerequisites: Grade of C or better AERO 201; grade of C or better in MATH 308 or registration therein.

AERO 212 Introduction to Aerothermodynamics

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours. 1 Lab Hour.

Study of thermodynamic properties and processes, heat and work, first and second laws of thermodynamics, power and refrigeration ideal cycles, psychrometrics.
Prerequisites: Grade of C or better in CHEM 107, CHEM 117; grade of C or better in AERO 201 and MATH 251, or registration therein.

AERO 214 Introduction to Aerospace Mechanics of Materials

Credits 3. 2 Lecture Hours. 2 Lab Hours.

Fundamental concepts for deformable bodies (conservation of linear and angular momentum, kinematics and thermoelasticity); notions of stress and strain and illustrative examples for engineering applications; introduction to experimental methods and reporting, instrumentation and uncertainty analysis; measurement of elastic and thermal material properties.
Prerequisites: Grade of C or better in PHYS 208; grade of C or better in AERO 210 and MATH 308, or registration therein.

AERO 220 Introduction to Aerospace Computation

Credits 4. 3 Lecture Hours. 3 Lab Hours.

Review of basic skills required for developing computer programs and introduction to more advanced concepts in scientific computing to solve aerospace engineering problems; numerical and analytical methods of solving engineering problems involving curve fitting; interpolation and extrapolation; difference operators and differentiation; integration; solutions to linear and non-linear equations and differential equations with engineering applications.
Prerequisites: Grade of C or better in AERO 201, ENGR 112; grade of C or better in MATH 308 or registration therein.

AERO 289 Special Topics in...

Credits 1 to 4. 1 to 4 Lecture Hours. 0 to 4 Lab Hours.

Selected topics in an identified area of aerospace engineering. May be repeated for credit.
Prerequisite: Approval of instructor.

AERO 291 Research

Credits 0 to 4. 0 to 4 Other Hours.

Research conducted under the direction of faculty member in aerospace engineering. May be repeated 3 times for credit.
Prerequisites: Freshman or sophomore classification and approval of instructor.

AERO 301 Theoretical Aerodynamics

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Fundamentals of incompressible flow, conservation principles, continuity, momentum, rotationality, circulation, lift, drag, potential flow, thin airfoil theory, panel methods, airfoil design, high lift devices, finite wing theory, vortex lattice methods, and wing design.
Prerequisites: Grade of C or better in AERO 212, AERO 220, MATH 308.

AERO 302 Aerospace Engineering Laboratory

Credits 2. 1 Lecture Hour. 3 Lab Hours.

Intermediate and advanced topics in instrumentation, signal conditioning, data acquisition analysis for aerospace-related measurements; emphasis on technical reporting and data presentation; measurements of materials strain, deformation, pressure, velocity and aerodynamic forces; experimental investigations of static and dynamic response of structures; use of nonintrusive optical techniques; uncertainty analysis; linear regression, Fourier transform and power spectra; tests for statistical significance.
Prerequisites: Grade of C or better in ENGL 104; grade of C or better in AERO 301, AERO 304, AERO 310, ECEN 215, or registration therein.

AERO 303 High Speed Aerodynamics

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Fundamentals of compressible flow, acoustic waves, shock and expansion waves, shock-expansion theory, supersonic airfoil design, small perturbation theory, conical flow theory, supersonic wing panel methods, supersonic wing design, similarity theory, cone flow, unsteady waves, and theory of characteristics.
Prerequisite: Grade of C or better in AERO 301.

AERO 304 Aerospace Structural Analysis I

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Structural design considerations; mechanics of structures; introduction to elasticity; constitution of materials; analysis of typical aerospace structures in bending, extension, torsion and shear.
Prerequisites: Grade of C or better in AERO 214, AERO 220, MATH 308.

AERO 306 Aerospace Structural Analysis II

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Work and energy principles; analysis of indeterminate structures by classical virtual work and finite elements; introduction to elastic stability of columns; application of energy methods to determine stresses, strains and displacements in typical aerospace structures; design considerations in aerospace structures.
Prerequisite: Grade of C or better in AERO 304.

AERO 310 Aerospace Dynamics

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Spatial kinematics; general motion of particles; Euler angles; Newton-Euler methods for translation and rotation of rigid bodies; work-energy and impulse momentum principles applied to aerospace systems; Linear theory of free and forced vibrations and dynamic response of single and multi-degree of freedom systems; frequency response of first and second order systems with instrumentation applications.
Prerequisites: Grade of C or better in AERO 210, AERO 214, AERO 220, MATH 308.

AERO 321 Dynamics of Aerospace Vehicles

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Derivation of the nonlinear flight dynamics equations; linearization; aircraft static stability and control; longitudinal and lateral dynamic stability; development of state-space models; stability derivatives; longitudinal and lateral modes and transfer functions; flying qualities; elements of configuration design; response to control inputs.
Prerequisites: Grade of C or better in AERO 301 and AERO 310.

AERO 351 Aerothermodynamics and Propulsion

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Aerothermodynamics of gases; laws of thermodynamics; equilibrium conditions; mixtures of gases; combustion and thermochemistry; compressible internal flows with friction, heat transfer and shock; turbojet cycle analysis and performance; chemical rockets.
Prerequisite: Grade of C or better in AERO 303 or registration therein.

AERO 401 Aerospace Vehicle Design I

Credits 3. 2 Lecture Hours. 3 Lab Hours.

Aerodynamic design, specification, arrangement, performance analysis, weight and balance, stability.
Prerequisites: Grade of C or better in AERO 302, AERO 303, AERO 306, AERO 321, AERO 351.

AERO 402 Aerospace Vehicle Design II

Credits 2. 6 Lab Hours.

Continuation of AERO 401. System optimization by examination and analysis of necessary trade-offs.
Prerequisite: Grade of C or better in AERO 401.

AERO 404 Mechanics of Advanced Aerospace Structures

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Advanced analysis techniques for aerospace structures; material anisotropy, plasticity, fatigue and fracture; laminated materials; solution of plane elasticity, plate and multi-component structural configurations; buckling of beams and plates; application of finite element analysis.
Prerequisites: Grade of C or better in AERO 304 and junior or senior classification.

AERO 405 Aerospace Structural Design

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Overall structural integrity of complete aerospace systems; structures subjected to critical loads; design considerations in aerospace structures.
Prerequisite: Grade of C or better in AERO 306.

AERO 406 Polymer Nanocomposites and their Applications

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Recent advances and methodologies in processing and characterization of nanostructured polymers and nanocomposites, as well as their commercial applications; investigate polymers filled with nanometer-size inclusions, including nanoparticles, nanotubes, nanofibers, and nanoclays; macroscale, microscale and nanoscale characterizations investigated in relation to properties of interest.
Prerequisites: Grade of C or better in AERO 413.

AERO 411 Applications of Fracture Mechanics to Aerospace Structures

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Foundations of linear elastic fracture mechanics of aerospace structure; calculation of stress intensity factors and energy release rates; crack growth under fatigue loading; ASTM standards for fracture testing; the role of fracture mechanics in the analysis and design of aerospace structures.
Prerequisite: AERO 304 or equivalent with a grade of C or better.

AERO 413 Aerospace Materials Science

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Relationship between aerospace engineering material properties and microstructure; mechanical and thermal properties; environmental degradation; mechanical failure.
Prerequisite: Grade of C or better in AERO 306.

AERO 417 Aerospace Propulsion

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Air breathing propulsion; design and analysis of inlets, compressors, combustors, turbines and nozzles; application to aeronautical and ground transportation.
Prerequisite: Grade of C or better in AERO 351.

AERO 419 Chemical Rocket Propulsion

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Nozzles and heat transfer in rockets, liquid and solid propellant systems; combustion and combustion stability; flight performance including trajectories, multistaging and exchange rate curves; rocket testing.
Prerequisite: Grade of C or better in AERO 351.

AERO 420 Aeroelasticity

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Classical analysis of fundamental aeroelastic phenomena with application to aerospace vehicles; flutter, divergence, control effectiveness.
Prerequisites: Grade of C or better in AERO 303, AERO 306, AERO 310.

AERO 422 Active Controls for Aerospace Vehicles

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Introduction to the Theory of Automatic Control specifically applied to aerospace vehicles; techniques for analysis and synthesis of linear control systems, stability criteria, systems response and performance criteria; design studies of active controls to improve aerospace vehicle performance.
Prerequisite: Grade of C or better in AERO 321.

AERO 423 Orbital Mechanics

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Rocket fundamentals; trajectories including aerodynamics, gravity turn and trajectory optimization, orbital mechanics, orbit lifetimes, three-body problem, orbit perturbations.
Prerequisite: Grade of C or better in AERO 321.

AERO 424 Spacecraft Attitude Dynamics and Control

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Introduces fundamental concepts of satellite attitude dynamics and control; includes derivations of environmental disturbances due to gravity gradient, aerodynamic, and solar radiation pressure; includes treatments of attitude control subsystems, such as thrusters, reaction wheels, CMGs, and magnetic torquers, and their designs.
Prerequisites: Grade of C or better in AERO 321.

AERO 425 Flight Test Engineering

Credits 3. 2 Lecture Hours. 3 Lab Hours.

Application of performance and stability and control theory to flight test measurements; standard atmosphere and airspeed equations for pilot-static system calibrations; flight test methods for evaluating performance, stability and control, and stall-spin characteristics; laboratory practice in planning and conducting small flight test project.
Prerequisite: Grade of C or better in AERO 321.

AERO 426 Space System Design

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Introduces prevailing practices and processes used in modern space system design; applies knowledge in component engineering disciplines to a design challenge of interest to NASA or DoD; utilizes instruction in systematic methods of design and on dynamics of teamwork; when possible concludes with detailed design using an engineering design facility.
Prerequisites: Grade of C or better in AERO 306, AERO 321, AERO 351.

AERO 428 Electromagnetic Sensing for Space-Borne Imaging

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Study IR and Visible range imaging systems to obtain high resolution imaging of objects from space; this area has numerous applications and areas of advanced development; following instruction in needed background on optics, telescopes, and interferometry, perform preliminary design of imaging system with a different imaging design offered each year.
Prerequisites: Grade of C or better in AERO 306, AERO 321, AERO 351.

AERO 430 Numerical Simulation

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Numerical and analytical simulation of physical problems in sciences and engineering using applied methods; developing and using numerical techniques for physical problems described by nonlinear algebraic equations, ordinary and partial differential equations.
Prerequisite:Grade of C or better in AERO 220 or MATH 417.

AERO 435 Aerothermochemistry

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Composition of chemically reacting gases (air and propellant); thermodynamic functions based on classical and quantum mechanical theories; calculation of gas temperatures; equilibrium, frozen and non-equilibrium flows through nozzles and shock waves.
Prerequisite: Grade of C or better in AERO 303.

AERO 440 Cockpit Systems and Displays

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Design, development, and implementation of cockpit systems and multi-function displays; cockpit system requirements and specifications; human-machine interfaces, Flight Management Systems, navigation and guidance systems; 3-D real-time displays of weather, traffic, and terrain; characteristics and missions of air vehicles; project design and cost analysis.
Prerequisite: Grade of C or better in AERO 321 or junior or senior classification in computer science.

AERO 445 Vehicle Management Systems

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Introduction to vehicle management systems for manned and unmanned air and space vehicles; system centric concepts, requirements definition, specifications, and architectures; reliability analysis, health monitoring, and mission management; SISO digital design of integrated flight control, propulsion control and structural control; introduction to vehicle autonomy; design and analysis methods, industrial examples.
Prerequisite: Grade of C or better in AERO 422.

AERO 451 Human Spaceflight Operations

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Essential aspects of human spaceflight operations as performed by NASA; in-depth understanding of the state-of-the-art in spacecraft operations, including spacecraft systems, ground and launch operations, mission management and on-orbit activities such as science, robotics, spacewalking and human health maintenance; applications to future space systems.
Prerequisite: Grade of C or better in AERO 321 or equivalent; senior classification.

AERO 452 Heat Transfer and Viscous Flows

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Navier-Stokes and boundary layer equations; exact and approximate solutions; laminar boundary layers; origin of turbulence; transition; turbulent boundary layers; viscous airfoil design; one and two dimensional heat transfer; methods for steady and transient heat conduction; thermal boundary layers; convection; and radiation.
Prerequisite: Grade of C or better in AERO 351.

AERO 472 Airfoil and Wing Design

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Subsonic airfoil design and analysis, subsonic wing design and analysis, swept and delta wings, vortex lift, transonic flow methods, viscous transonic phenomena, transonic airfoil and wing design, supersonic panel methods, supersonic wing design, optimization.
Prerequisite: Grade of C or better in AERO 303.

AERO 481 Seminar

Credit 1. 1 Lecture Hour.

Readings, reports, conferences and discussion. Must be taken on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis.
Prerequisite: Senior classification in aerospace engineering.

AERO 485 Directed Studies

Credits 1 to 4. 1 to 4 Other Hours.

Special problems in aerospace engineering assigned to individual students or groups.
Prerequisites: Senior classification; approval of department head.

AERO 489 Special Topics in...

Credits 1 to 4. 1 to 4 Lecture Hours. 0 to 4 Lab Hours.

Selected topics in an identified field of aerospace engineering. May be repeated for credit.
Prerequisite: Approval of instructor.

AERO 491 Research

Credits 0 to 4. 0 to 4 Other Hours.

Research conducted under the direction of faculty member in aerospace engineering. May be repeated 3 times for credit.
Prerequisites: Junior or senior classification and approval of instructor.

Alfriend, Kyle, Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, 1967

Baxevanis, Theocharis, TEES Assistnt Research Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, Aristotle University, 2003

Benzerga, Amine, Associate Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, Ecole National Superieure Des Mines De Paris, 2000

Bhattacharya, Raktim, Associate Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, University of Minnesota, 2003

Bowersox, Rodney, Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, Virginia Tech, 1992

Boyd, James, Associate Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, Texas A&M University, 1994

Chakravorty, Suman, Associate Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, University of Michigan, 2004

Chamitoff, Gregory, Professor Of The Practice
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1992

Cizmas, Paul, Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, Duke University, 1995

Donzis, Diego, Associate Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, Georgia Institute of Technology, 2007

Dunbar, Bonnie, Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, University of Houston, 1983

Elmendorf, Harry, Associate Professor Of The Practice
Aerospace Engineering
BS, TAMU, 1970

Girimaji, Sharath, Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, Cornell University, 1990

Hartl, Darren, Tees Research Assistant Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, Texas A&M University, 2009

Hurtado, John, Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, Texas A&M University, 1995

Hyland, David, Professor
Aerospace Engineering
DVM, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1974

Junkins, John, Distinguished Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, University of California, Los Angeles, 1969

Kanipe, David, Associate Professor Of The Practice
Aerospace Engineering
MS, Texas A& M University, 1971

Karpetis, Adonios, Associate Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, Yale University, 1998

Kinra, Vikram, Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, Brown University, 1975

Lagoudas, Dimitris, Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, Lehigh University, 1986

Le Graverend, Jean-Briac, Assistant Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, Ecole National Supérieure de Mécanique et d’Aérotechnique, 2013

Lutz, Wayne, Associate Professor Of The Practice
Aerospace Engineering
MS, University of Southern California, 1984

Mishra, Aashwin, Lecturer
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, Texas A&M University, 2014

Moble, Benedict, Assistant Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, University of Maryland, 2010

Mortari, Daniele, Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, University La Sapienza of Rome, 1980

Naraghi, Mohammad, Assistant Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign, 2009

Pollock, Thomas, Associate Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, University of Virginia, 1977

Rediniotis, Othon, Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, Virginia Tech, 1992

Reed, Helen, Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, Virginia Tech, 1981

Richard, Jacques, Senior Lecturer
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, Rensselaer University, 1989

Saric, William, Distinguished Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, Illinois Institute of Technology, 1968

Shryock, Kristi, Instructional Associate Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, Texas A&M University, 2011

Skelton, Robert, Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, University Of California-Los Angeles, 1976

Strganac, Thomas, Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, Virginia Tech, 1987

Strouboulis, Theofanis, Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, University of Texas - Austin, 1986

Talreja, Ramesh, Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, The Technical University of Denmark, 1985

Vadali, Srinivas, Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, Virginia Tech, 1983

Valasek, John, Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, University of Kansas, 1995

Whitcomb, John, Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, Virginia Tech, 1988

White, Edward, Associate Professor
Aerospace Engineering
PHD, Arizona State University, 2000