Vanderbilt Aerospace Club, Adviser receive special honors from Tennessee AIAA



The Vanderbilt Aerospace Club received a special award from the Tennessee Section of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) for its outstanding success at the NASA University Student Launch Initiative (USLI) National Competition.

In addition, the team adviser and professor of mechanical engineering A.V. Anilkumar received the Tennessee AIAA Special Award for his outstanding mentoring to the Vanderbilt Aerospace Club.

At an awards luncheon held on Nov. 17 at the University of Tennessee Space Institute, the club was commended by AIAA for winning the Payload Design Prize and the Web Site Design Prize at the 2009-2010 NASA USLI Competition.

Vanderbilt’s design of a ‘thermoelectric engine for waste heat recovery in aerospace applications’ was cited by NASA as the most creative and innovative design, which maximized safety and provided engineering value. NASA also cited the team for its unique web design in hosting in-depth information through excellent use of design elements along with easy to use navigation tools’.

Payload prize in 2010
On behalf of the Vanderbilt Aerospace Club, Jennifer Frankland accepts the AIAA Special Award from Joe Wehrmeyer, chairman of the AIAA Tennessee Section Awards Committee. Other current club members include (l-r) Zach Smith, Kyle Bloemer and Chris Lioi.

Individual plaques were awarded to the team members (current affiliations in parenthesis): Ty Barringer (Washington University), James Board (Georgia Tech), Travis Chan (USAF), Ben Chociej (Vanderbilt), Chris Lioi (Vanderbilt) , Ben McKnight (Sergeant & Lundy), Nick Vass (Georgia Tech), Sam Nackman (Princeton), Kyle Rosenstein (University of Kentucky), and Zach Smith (Vanderbilt).

The Vanderbilt Aerospace Club activities are jointly sponsored by the Tennessee Space Grant Consortium and the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Vanderbilt University. Its main agenda is to promote practical aerospace engineering activities for engineering students and help develop a well-trained workforce for the aerospace industry. Details of the club activities can be found at their web site