University of Central Florida: Combustion, Propulsion, Laser Diagnostics, and Fuels (Vasu Lab) - Orlando, FL Graduate Researcher

May 01, 2017 - Present

  • Developed Tunable Diode Laser Absorption Spectroscopy (TDLAS) instruments to probe static temperature and species (H2O, CO, CO2) concentration in Rotating Detonation Engines (RDEs).
  • Work with industry partners to investigate total pressure gain in RDEs using advanced TDLAS and Particle Imaging Velocimetry (PIV).

SpaceX - Hawthorne, CA Propulsion Intern

May 31, 2016 - Aug 26, 2016

  • Analysis and simulation code development support.
  • Supported effort to reduce Merlin Vacuum engine thrust uncertainty through the development of a multi-zone nozzle model.
  • Post-process engine test stand data with SpaceX’s performance code with modified targets so to build more accurate models of the engine as well as identify conditions which cause the code to diverge and propose modifications to address the problem.

University of Central Florida: Combustion, Propulsion, Laser Diagnostics, and Fuels (Vasu Lab) - Orlando, FL Graduate Research Assistant, Lab Manager

May 01, 2012 - May 01, 2016

Lead on development and prototyping of spectroscopic sensors for practical applications:

  • Low mass, low power advanced fire & hazardous gas detection for space vehicles.
  • A multi-disciplined project requiring knowledge of spectroscopy, FPGA/DAQ programming, electrical engineering, digital signal processing/spectral analysis, optical lens design, system testing and low mass mechanical design.
  • Brought instrument to high confidence level for high altitude balloon flight through series of tests which include detection limits & interfering species evaluations as well as low temperature/pressure environmental chamber benchmark testing.
  • Awarded support from FAA Commercial Space Transportation and Florida Space Institute and NASA’s High Altitude Student Platform (HASP).
Mentored new students, advising them in research, engineering, and academics as well as managing their progress on their research projects.

Regularly formulated and proposed novel system designs, including writing and submitting proposals on my own and in collaboration with other students.

Oversaw lab safety to ensure proper use of equipment, and assist associates in setting and administering experiments.

Vasu Labs is a member of the Center for Advanced Turbomachinery & Energy Research (CATER):

SpaceX - Hawthorne, CA Propulsion Intern

Aug 10, 2015 - Nov 25, 2015

Developed hydraulic components for the Merlin 1D engine including CAD design, GD&T (ANSI Y14.5), FEM analysis, and qualification testing:

  • Utilized NASA standards (NASA-STD-5001) to inform design decisions and testing.
  • Analysis of hydraulic components using ANSYS.
  • Supported Merlin 1D subsystem and component level testing (functional, proof, leak, vibe, etc.)
I worked closely with multiple teams on a variety of projects which exposed me to different areas of engine development at SpaceX. My work ranged from component development using NX CAD software to proof testing, working with high pressure hydraulic/pneumatic systems. During my internship, I brought an engine component through concept, design, analysis, machining, to testing.

Siemens Energy - Orlando, FL Combustion Engineer Intern

Dec 20, 2013 - Aug 01, 2014

  • Aided in the development of software tools used for design and analysis of current and future gas turbine combustors. Tools include MATLAB scripts and Excel add-ins.
  • Post-processed sensor test data collected from in development gas turbine combustors (DSP).
  • Analyzed acoustics in combustor/fuel lines and developed correlations with emissions.