Yale, B., Patel, R., Nakhjiri, N., & Lam, T. (2021). MALTO GUI: A Better Interface for Trajectory Design , in progress.

Patel, R., Moore, J., Stuart, J., Hernandez, S., & Alper Ramaswamy, B. (2020). I’ll have the Porter: Interactively Visualizing the Results of Statistical Maneuver Analysis, presented on 02/02/2021 at the 31st AAS/AIAA Space Flight Mechanics Virtual Meeting, Charlotte. (AAS 21-334 PREPRINT)

Abdolrahimi, S., Yale, B., Welsher, J., Tzounis, C., Fofrich, J., Cancinos, R., Patel, R., Cabrera, J., Hassel, C. B., Nakhjiri, N., Scott, D., & Johnson, A. (2020). Voyager 3: A Concept Mission to Interstellar Medium, submitted to AIAA Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets. (PREPRINT available upon request)

Patel, R., Landau, D., & Lam, T. (2020). Solar System Escape Trajectories Using Outer Planetary Gravity Assists, proceedings of AAS/AIAA Astrodynamics Specialist Virtual Conference, Lake Tahoe. (AAS20-741 PREPRINT)

Yale, B., Patel, R., Cabrera, J., & Nakhjiri, N. (2020). Broad Trajectory Searches Using Monte Carlo Tree Search with the Inclusion of ΔVEGA Trajectories, proceedings of AAS/AIAA Astrodynamics Specialist Virtual Conference, Lake Tahoe. (AAS20-686 PREPRINT)



NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory

Mission Design and Navigation Group (392K) (09/2019 – 12/2019) (06/2020 – 11/2020)

    • Assisting with the development of a new maneuver simulation data visualization tool.
      • Learning about statistical maneuver design, tour design, and maneuver placement
      • Working with JPL’s MONTE  and LAMBIC software tools to learn about and create reference trajectories and maneuvers.



GNC/Aeromechanical Group (05/2019 – 08/2019)

      • Worked on creating UAV navigation algorithms for efficient flight plan generation
      • Involved with concept of operations, multidisciplinary design optimization, and flight performance estimations


Energy Maximizing Outer Planetary Gravity Assists for Solar System Escape

Independent Research Project (01/2020 – 06/2020)

  • Worked with Try Lam and Damon Landau of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory to investigate solar system escape trajectories between 2030-2060.
  • Developed and added energy maximizing flyby conditions to broad trajectory search data to find fast escape sequences
  • Conducted a search and optimized trajectories to several KBO objects using the previously found data (found +10,000 trajectories to 25 KBOs of interest)
  • Published in the AAS Astrodynamics Specialist Conference, Lake Tahoe (See Publications Section AAS20-741)


Monte Carlo Tree Search for Interplanetary Trajectory Sequence Generation

Capstone Project Team Member (09/2019 – 07/2020)

  • Exploring the use of Monte Carlo Tree Search bases heuristics in broad multi-flyby interplanetary trajectory search
  • Ran various cases like Galileo and Europa Clipper to validate search results and algorithm performance
  • Developed a method to find and implement ΔVEGA orbit leveraging into the broad search using a lookup table solution.
  • Published in the AAS Astrodynamics Specialist Conference, Lake Tahoe (See Publications Section AAS20-686)


CPP/JPL Mission Analysis – Low Thrust Optimization (MALTO)

On-Campus Researcher (02/2019 – 12/2019)

  • Learning Mission Analysis – Low Thrust Optimization (MALTO) and low thrust trajectory design
  • Conducting internal testing for the new graphical user interface being developed in MATLAB App Designer
  • Creating documentation and tutorial missions for the new GUI release which will be available to CPP students and JPL employees
  • Helping with SI sessions and on-campus demonstrations



Solar Gravitational Lensing Mission Concept  (ARO4811L) (more info)

Mission Design Lead and Systems Engineering (11/2019 – 05/2020)

  • Responding to a JPL proposal for an interstellar solar gravitational lensing telescope intended to 550 AU
  • Researching and developing possible trajectories to the interstellar medium (ISM) using multi-planetary flybys
  • Utilizing JPL’s MALTO and AGI’s Systems Toolkit (STK) to create and verify trajectory and flybys
  • Involved in vehicle design, components selection, and systems engineering for the project


Taylor-Maccoll Equation (Supersonic Flow Past a Cone) (ARO3111) (more info)

Individual Project (03/2019 – 04/2019)

  • Used the non-dimensionalized version of the Taylor-Maccoll Equation to find the flow properties behind a supersonic cone with an oblique shockwave.
  • Took the T-M PDE and broke it down into 2 ODE’s for use with the Runge-Kutta 4th Order ODE algorithm.
  • Analyzed flow properties behind the shock for pressure, temperature, and density until the cone surface.


Numerical Lifting Line Theory (ARO3011) (more info)

Individual Project (11/2018 – 12/2018)

  • Learned about the Numerical lifting line theory and the Kutta-Joukowski Lift Equation.
  • Created MATLAB code takes user input for three different wing geometries and calculates chord wise circulation, downwash, and lift coefficient.
  • Analyzed different geometries and how lift and drag vary.


Kinetic Impactor Preliminary Trajectory Design (ARO309) (more info)

Project Lead (01/2018 – 03/2018)

  • Learned about Lambert Transfers and basics regarding the space mission design process
  • Created MATLAB code that imports ephemeris data, runs a trajectory search under specified conditions, and generates porkchop plots for launch and arrival data.
  • Lead team to successful completion of the project and with even participation. (Highest project grade in all sections of the course)

On Campus

FAR1030-5R Competition

Aerodynamics Team Lead (10/2018 – 06/2019)

  • Managed aerodynamics and flight simulation team
  • Taught group members how do basic aerodynamic stability evaluation and to use related programs
  • Applied high speed aerodynamics to predict flow properties and pressure coefficients around the vehicle
  • Worked on vehicle design (internal and external) and helped with the CAD model of the vehicle
  • Placed 1st in the competition sending a 130 lb, 1300 lbf thrust rocket to 23,400 feet at a peak velocity of Mach 1.78 (LAUNCH) (STATIC FIRE) (PICTURES)

Liquid Rocket Lab

Launch Vehicle Aerodynamics (06/2018 – 06/2019)

  • Involved in Launch Vehicle Design
  • Working on vehicle stability MATLAB code
  • Working on 3-DOF MATLAB simulation code
  • Using CFD to analyze flow properties and to design fin configurations suitable for flight
  • Developed a USAF Missile DATCOM configuration to generate aerodynamic properties of the vehicle and integrated the results in MATLAB.



Spaceport America IREC 2018 (more info)

Aerodynamics Team and CAD Member (10/2017 – 06/2018)

  • Learned about the fundamentals of aerodynamics of high powered rockets
  • Worked on launch vehicle design, stability, and flight performance
  • Hands on work with rocket assembly gaining experience with with composites and 3D printing
  • Used Solidworks and Flow Simulation to design parts, assemblies, and do basic CFD analysis of shock-wave formation, pressures, and flow velocities.




Orbital Mechanics Library for MATLAB & Python (more info)

Individual Project (ongoing)

  • Collection of orbital mechanics related code I have created in undergrad.
  • Requires: NAIF SPICE (CSPICE and Spiceypy)
  • Uses several community available libraries
  • Includes: execution error analysis, porkchop plotting (MATLAB and Python), 2BP, visualization, Launch Vehicle performance, and others.
  • Available at:


Modeling NASA InSight on MATLAB and GMAT (more info)

Individual Project (12/2018 – 01/2019)

  • Modeled the NASA InSight Mission from Centaur burns to the EDL Phase.
  • Learned about the NASA open source program GMAT for trajectory modeling.
  • Created MATLAB code that compares launch dates and trajectory conditions
  • Used MATLAB to write a simple visualization of the Lambert transfer trajectory.