Khalifa University Student Team Ranked 9th Out of 104 International Universities at DBF 2019 AIAA Competition in US

Sunday 12 May 2019
Abu Dhabi - MENA Herald:

Khalifa University of Science and Technology, a research university dedicated to the advancement of learning through the discovery and application of knowledge, today announced a team of 12 Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering students was ranked ninth overall out of 104 universities in the Design Build Fly (DBF) 2019 American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) Competition in Tucson, Arizona, US.

The team designed and developed an unmanned, electric-powered, radio-controlled aircraft that successfully completed all three mandatory missions at the international competition in which participants included some of the top universities in the world. This is also Khalifa University’s eighth successive year of participation in the DBF challenge, an annual event sponsored this year by the AIAA, Cessna Aircraft Company and Raytheon Missile Systems.

The aircraft had to successfully complete three missions – a flight over a predefined 2000-foot path, carrying a rotating ‘radome’ as a payload, perform three laps followed by a successful landing, and carrying of at least four attack stores each weighing around 0.187 pounds and drop one in every lap. The DBF mission this year was also tough because of the design requirement for folding wings, and its size and operation.

A total team of 20 undergraduate students from Aerospace Engineering and Mechanical Engineering worked together throughout the year to design, fabricate, and demonstrate the flight capabilities of the unmanned aircraft, readying it for the competition.

Dr Arif Sultan Al Hammadi, Executive Vice-President, Khalifa University of Science and Technology, said: “Congratulations to the student team that has achieved a remarkable position overall in the Design Build Fly (DBF) 2019 AIAA Competition, thus demonstrating the extent of faculty expertise at Khalifa University  who have painstakingly taken efforts to provide the students with what they required. We believe this success will motivate and encourage students towards further excellence and reaching high positions in different regional and global competitions.”

This year, the faculty advisors included Assistant Professor Dr. Andreas Schiffer from the Department of Mechanical Engineering, and Assistant Professor Dr. Ki Sun Park from the Department of Aerospace Engineering. Additionally, the team was supported and advised by two graduate students – Adnan Salem and Abdelnasir Alnaqbi.

Last year, Khalifa University had been were placed 20th out of a total 91 international teams at the DBF 2018 AIAA Competition held in Wichita, Kansas.

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