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KU Aerospace Engineering Students Take Top Awards at International Design Competition (Again!)

Images of two conceptual aircraft designs that took 1st and 3nd Place awards at the 2023 AIAA design competition.
KU School of Engineering
University of Kansas
KU captured the 1st and 3rd Place awards in the AIAA Undergraduate Individual Aircraft Design Competition. “Little Goose," designed by KU student Daniel Pacheco, took the top award. The 3rd Place award went to KU student Riley Schwartzhoff for a design called “Frog Hopper.”

Aerospace engineering students at the University of Kansas have done it again - winning some of the top honors at a prestigious international aerospace design competition. One of their winning designs is for a new missile, which has already grabbed the attention of U.S. Defense Department contractors. KPR's J. Schafer spoke with Aerospace Engineering Professor Ron Barrett-Gonzalez to learn more.

KU aerospace engineering students took 1st, 2nd and 3rd place awards in two different categories (aircraft design and missile design) at this year's international design competition, sponsored by the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA). The KU aerospace engineering program has won more than 100 design awards from AIAA, more than any other school in the United States of America. And that's saying something.

The top half of this image is an artistic rendering of a missile flying above water and through the air. The “AIGM-138 Chimera” was designed by a team of American and international graduate students at KU, who are pictured holding a prototype of the missile in a photo beneath the artistic rendering of the missile.
This conceptual missile design won 2nd Place in the AIAA Graduate Team Missile Design competition. The “AIGM-138 Chimera” was designed by a team of American and international graduate students at KU, including Adam Andresen, Kang Chen, Jonas Knickenberg. Chukwuemeka Mba, Nicholas Sandusky and Muhammad Yakawu. U.S. defense contractors have expressed interest in this missile and the KU Center for Research has applied for a patent for this design.

J. Schafer is the News Director of Kansas Public Radio. He’s also the Managing Editor of the Kansas Public Radio Network, which provides news and information to other public radio stations in Kansas and Missouri.