News & Events


GALCIT Alumnus Allen E. Puckett Passes Away


Allen E. Puckett (PhD ’49 Aeronautics), pioneering aerospace engineer and chairman emeritus of Hughes Aircraft Co., passed away on March 31, 2014. He was one of the engineers who made Hughes Aircraft into the United States’ leading defense electronics firm which dominated in the markets for air defense, radar systems, tactical missiles and satellites. He began his PhD in 1941 at Caltech at the invitation of Theodore von Kármán. While at GALCIT he helped design a new supersonic wind tunnel, the first of its kind in the country. Later, he produced the calculations that led to the development of delta wing theory, which predicts the aerodynamics of supersonic aircraft and continues to be applied in the production of modern aircraft. [LA Times Obituary]

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Transforming the Thomas Laboratory


The renovation of the Franklin Thomas Laboratory of Engineering began with a wall breaking ceremony on April 4, 2014. The donors who made this renovation possible are: the Gate Frontiers Fund and Diane Gates Wallach who made the gift in honor of her father, Charles C. Gates Jr. a former life-trustee of Caltech; alumnus Jim Hall (BS ’57) and his wife Sandy; and the Fred L. Hartley Family Foundation.

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Tags: GALCIT MCE Ares Rosakis Caltech infrastructure Kaushik Bhattacharya Diane Wallach Jim Hall Edward Stolper

New Dean of Undergraduate Students


John O. Dabiri, Professor of Aeronautics and Bioengineering, will become Dean of Undergraduate Students, effective July 1, 2014. Professor Dabiri was suggested for this position by several Institute constituencies and enjoys the confidence and respect of students and faculty alike. He is particularly committed to enhancing faculty-student interactions.

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Everyone Starts Small: How Metals Learn to Behave


In his upcoming Watson Lecture Assistant Professor of Aerospace Dennis Kochmann will explain how controlling a material's complex structural details from the atomic scale up can affect its behavior in everyday life. [Interview with Professor Kochmann] [ENGenious article]

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Professor Dimotakis Receives AIAA Fluid Dynamics Award


Paul E. Dimotakis, John K. Northrop Professor of Aeronautics and Professor of Applied Physics, has been selected to receive the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) Fluid Dynamics Award for 2014. The award is for outstanding contributions to the understanding of the behavior of liquids and gases in motion as related to needs in aeronautics and astronautics. Professor Dimotakis is being recognized for "Fundamental contributions to turbulent mixing and combustion through careful and thorough experiments using novel techniques."

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Professor Dimotakis Receives NASA Group Achievement Award


Paul E. Dimotakis, John K. Northrop Professor of Aeronautics and Professor of Applied Physics, and his team have received a National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Group Achievement Award for exceptional achievement in the successful negotiation of the new NASA Prime Contract.

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Using Space Wisely


The Winter 2013 issue of Engineering & Science features Professor Sergio Pellegrino's Space Structures Laboratory in the Guggenheim building. “The goal for much of my work,” says Pellegrino, “is to make simpler and cheaper spacecraft. I want to use clever structural engineering to make access to space more affordable.” The article also describes him and his team's work on the AAReST project (Autonomous Assembly of a Reconfigurable Space Telescope) as well as applications of his work to solar concentrators. [E&S Article]

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AIAA Gossamer Systems Forum Best Paper Award


Professor Sergio Pellegrino and colleagues, including GALCIT graduate student Gina Olson, have received the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) 14th Gossamer Systems Forum Best Paper Award for their paper entitled "Deployable Helical Antennas for CubeSats". The Gossamer Systems Forum addresses recent research findings and newly proposed concepts concerning the emerging class of large-scale, lightweight structures that is enabling a paradigm shift in design, launch, and operation of spaceflight systems. [Read the paper]

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Professor Rosakis Elected to Indian National Academy of Engineering


Professor Ares J. Rosakis has been elected as a Foreign Fellow of the Indian National Academy of Engineering. The Academy confers Fellowship on Indian and Foreign nationals who have demonstrated their eminence and achieved outstanding accomplishments in engineering and technology.

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Professor Beverley McKeon Elected Associate Fellow of AIAA


Beverley McKeon, Professor of Aeronautics and the Associate Director of GALCIT, has been elected to the grade of Associate Fellow in the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA). AIAA Associate Fellows are individuals of distinction who have made notable and valuable contributions to the arts, sciences, or technology of aeronautics or astronautics.

Tags: honors GALCIT Beverley McKeon