Ohio State undergrad achieves first place at 2021 AIAA Region III Regional Student Conference

Posted: June 3, 2021
Image of Jonathan Richmond

Multiple students from the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering were first-place award winners at the 2021 American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics Region III Regional Student Conference. Among the winners of the research paper competition was Aerospace Research Center student assistant Jonathan Richmond.

Richmond, a recent graduate in aerospace engineering, earned first place in the undergraduate category for his paper entitled Optimizing Trajectories for Unpowered Hypersonic Waveriders during Atmospheric Reentry. First-place winners are invited to attend and present their papers at the AIAA International Student Conference, to be held in conjunction with the 2022 AIAA SciTech Forum in San Diego, CA, 3–7 January 2022.

A student assistant at the Aerospace Research Center, Richmond was advised by Associate Professor of Practice Cliff Whitfield, working in his Flight Vehicle Design and Testing Group.

“This research provides insights into design specifications and constraints for hypersonic waveriders, as well as potential atmospheric reentry trajectories,” Richmond said. “Optimized trajectories and hypersonic vehicles will help conserve resources and lower costs for atmospheric reentry on Earth and other planets.”

In the autumn Richmond will attend Purdue University to pursue a doctoral degree in aerospace engineering, focusing on astrodynamics and space applications. After that, he hopes to work on trajectory planning and mission design for NASA.

“Receiving this recognition feels like my time and hard work is being acknowledged and that I am being accepted as part of the aerospace community,” he said. “I feel like my efforts have paid off and that I am happy to have been able to make a contribution to the industry.”

Richmond completed an undergraduate honors thesis, served as president of the International Justice Mission student organization and was recognized as an Eminence Fellow during his time at The Ohio State University.

 Original story by the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering