NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Mission Design and Navigation Group (392K) (09/2019 – 12/2019)
- Learning about Europa Clipper maneuver design and flight path control
- Assisting the MDNav group by helping to develop a new visualization application for maneuver design
- Learning MONTE, LAMBIC, and COSMIC for statistical maneuvers and basic trajectory design
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 performance estimations
CPP/JPL Mission Analysis – Low Thrust Optimization (MALTO)
Researcher (02/2019 – Present)
- 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
Reinforcement Learning for Trajectory Design
Researcher (11/2019 – Present)
- Using reinforcement learning to design flyby sequences of either planets or moons in the Jovian system.
- Learning about Q and Deep-Q learning methods.
- Exploring the Monte Carlo Tree Search (MCTS) method for trajectory search convergence.
- (More information will follow as the project continues)
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.
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.
Space Vehicle Design Laboratory (ARO4811L)
Trajectory Design Lead (08/2019 – Present)
- Responding to a JPL proposal for an interstellar solar gravitational lensing telescope intended to pass 550 AU
- Researching and developing possible trajectories to the interstellar medium (ISM) using multi-planetary flybys
- Utilizing JPL’s MALTO and NASA GMAT to create and verify trajectory
- Involved in vehicle design, component selection, and systems engineering for the project
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)
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.
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.
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.
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 here: github.com/rohanpatel747/orbitalmechanics_rp