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American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics



    Ramesh K. Agarwal to Receive the AIAA 2015 Reed Aeronautics Award
    Honored for Outstanding Leadership in Aerospace Education and Research and Advancing Wide Range of Aerospace Vehicles

    February 27, 2015 – Reston, Va. – Ramesh K. Agarwal, an AIAA Fellow, and the William Palm Professor of Engineering in the department of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science at Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri, has won the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) 2015 Reed Aeronautics Award. Agarwal will receive the award on May 6, during the AIAA Aerospace Spotlight Awards Gala at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center, in Washington, D.C.

    Agarwal is being honored for his “outstanding leadership in aerospace education and research and advancing a wide range of aerospace vehicles through application of computational fluid dynamics.”

    “Receiving the Reed Aeronautics Award from AIAA is the most important highlight of my career,” said Agarwal. “I am humbled to be in the company of exemplary stalwarts in aeronautics over a century. I am deeply honored to receive this award.”

    Agarwal’s career has spanned over 35 years, and has involved work both in industry and academia. From 1975 to 1991, Agarwal worked at McDonnell Douglas, establishing a leading group in the field of Computational Fluid Dynamics at the McDonnell Douglas Research Laboratories (MDRL). While at MDRL, Agarwal worked on a variety of civilian and military aircraft systems, including the wing design on the MD-12 airliner, the wing and winglet integration for the C-17 “Globemaster III” military cargo plane; and the horizontal tail design for the MD-90/91 airliner. Agarwal also designed advanced CFD codes used extensively by McDonnell Douglas for calculations involving both civilian and military aircraft, including transport aircraft, missile systems, and helicopter systems.

    “Without Ramesh K. Agarwal’s contributions to computational fluid dynamics, our understanding of flight in turbulent flows would not be as advanced as it is today,” said Jim Albaugh, AIAA president. “His work has been integral to making a wide variety of aerospace systems safer, easier to fly and more fuel efficient. He is truly deserving of this year’s Reed Aeronautics Award.”

    Agarwal left McDonnell Douglas in 1994, becoming director of the National Institute for Aviation Research at Wichita State University, where he directed research aimed at improving the general/business aviation community’s record of flight safety and performance. While at the Center, he was also the Sam Bloomfield Distinguished Professor and chair of the Aerospace Engineering Department at Wichita State University (WSU), Kansas. At WSU, Agarwal implementing curriculum reforms that placed greater emphasis on design education.

    Agarwal joined the faculty at Washington University in 2001. Since that time he has been researching environmentally responsible aviation and aircraft design. Among his contributions have been original contributions toward the understanding of the physical and numerical issues related to Burnett equations and the development of a 3-D Burnett code in generalized coordinates to aid in flow simulations from vehicles the size of the Space Shuttle to micro vehicles.

    Agarwal is a Fellow of several organizations, including the American Society for Engineering Education, the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE); the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE); the American Academy of Mechanics, IEEE, and the Royal Aeronautical Society, among others.

    Agarwal’s past honors include the Institution of Engineering and Technologies 2012 Heaviside Medal; the ASME’s 2011 Edwin F. Church Medal; the 2011 AIAA Thermophysics Award; the 2010 AIAA/ASEE John Leland Atwood Award; the 2009 SAE Clarence L. “Kelly” Johnson Aerospace Vehicle Design & Development Award; the 2009 AIAA/SAE William Littlewood Lecture Award; the 2008 AIAA Aerodynamic Award; and the 2006 Royal Aeronautical Society Gold Medal.

    The Reed Aeronautics Award is the highest honor that AIAA presents for notable achievement in aeronautics. The award honors Dr. Sylvanus A. Reed, the aeronautical engineer, designer, and founding member of the Institute of Aeronautical Sciences in 1932. Reed was the first to develop a propeller system composed of metal rather than wood.

    For more information on the Reed Aeronautics Award, or the AIAA Honors and Awards program, please contact Carol Stewart at 703.264.7623 or


    AIAA is the largest aerospace professional society in the world, serving a diverse range of more than 30,000 individual members from 88 countries, and 95 corporate members. AIAA members help make the world safer, more connected, more accessible, and more prosperous. For more information, visit, or follow us on Twitter @AIAA.



    American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics
    1801 Alexander Bell Drive, Suite 500, Reston, VA 20191-4344
    Phone: 703.264.7558 Fax: 703.264.7551