Centennial Lunch at FXB

Some Department of Aerospace Engineering Memories

Professor Emeritus Martin Sichel
(Started teaching, June 1, 1961 – Retired May 31. 1998)

The Beginning

I have been with The Department of Aerospace Engineering at The University of Michigan since 1961. In November 1960 one of my thesis advisers let me know that the department of Aeronautical Engineering at the University of Michigan was interested in hiring a junior faculty member. I had already planned an interview trip through to the West Coast, so I decided to stop in Ann Arbor.

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Took the EIT and PE Exams on Consecutive Days

David Norton, BSAE’64, retired

Thirteen years after graduation I assumed a job as a product safety tester, including serving numerous times as an expert witness in court testimony. This required that I possess a professional engineering degree. I took both the EIT and PE exams in Florida on consecutive days, and passed … a feat accomplished less than 13% of the time nationally I was told. I contribute that accomplishment to the great education I received.

Worst Undergrad Ever

Richard Haffner, BSAE’00, Quality Assurance Manager, Gencor Industries

From the time I started in Aero in 1984, to the time I was dismissed in 1988, I had to be the worst undergraduate student the department had ever seen. In 1997, when I returned for the first time, I had Lab I with Prof Waas and Structures II with Prof Eisley. Profs Waas and Eisley changed my life. Read More »

Pursuing a Love of Travel…through Work!

Christina Heins, BSAE’12, Project Manager, Comau Inc.

Christina Heins

Christina Heins is a Project Manager in the Aerospace department at Comau, Inc., an integrator in the advanced manufacturing industry. Currently, she is working on a project for Airbus, integrating a new final assembly line for their single aisle aircraft in Mobile, AL. Christina received her Bachelor’s Degree in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Michigan in 2012. Read More »

I never thought this would happen!

Dennis Kross, BSAE’63, Retired NASA Rocket Scientist

Moved to Huntsville, Alabama to work with the Wernher von Braun rocket team. Worked on the Saturn rockets, the Lunar Rover Vehicle (LRV), the Space Shuttle, and the International Space Station (ISS) over a 40 year career…I never thought this would happen!

The First Hundred Years

The First Hundred Years

Presented by the UM College of Engineering

Pioneers Of Aviation Alan and Malcolm Lockheed

Allan and Malcolm Loughead were pioneers of California’s airplane industry. They pronounced Loughead “lock-heed.” Later in their lives they changed the spelling to match the pronunciation.

The brothers were born in Niles, California. They became interested in airplanes as teenagers, after their older brother showed them a book that he wrote about planes and flying.

As young men, the Loughead brothers worked as auto mechanics. They designed and built airplanes in their free time. In 1913, they flew their first plane over San Francisco Bay. It was one of the biggest planes ever built.

In 1916, the brothers opened an airplane factory in Santa Barbara, but their planes did not sell because they were too large and expensive. Malcolm Loughead went back to work in auto mechanics. He designed a successful braking system for cars, which made him wealthy.

Allan Loughead stayed in the airplane industry. In 1926, he designed the popular Vega airplane. Orders for Vega airplanes began to pour in and the Lockheed Aircraft Company became a success.

100 Years of Michigan Aerospace

One of the things that binds us all together is the love of aeronautics and space exploration. It is as true today as it was 100 years ago. The University of Michigan started the first collegiate aeronautics program in the United States in 1914. Since then, the Department has graduated more than 6,000 aeronautical and aerospace engineers. Our graduate program ranks No. 1 among public institutions and our undergraduate program ranks No. 3 in the nation by U.S. News for 2013.

AERO Alumni Talk: Past, Present and Future