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American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics

    CONTACT: John Blacksten


    AIAA to Recognize Achievements in Aircraft and Atmospheric Systems
    at its June Aviation and Aeronautics Forum and Exposition

    May 13, 2016 – Reston, Va. – The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) will celebrate technical achievements in aircraft and atmospheric systems at a 12:30 p.m. (EDT) awards luncheon on June 16, as part of the AIAA Aviation and Aeronautics Forum (AVIATION 2016), June 13 – 17, at the Washington Hilton, Washington, D.C.

    The honorees are:

    • The U.S. Navy’s X-47B Unmanned Combat Air System Carrier Demonstration Program (UCAS-D) Team, Department of the Navy, Arlington, Virginia, will receive the 2016 AIAA Aircraft Design Award. The team was led by Rear Adm. Mathias Winter, program executive officer for Unmanned Aviation and Strike Weapons. The award recognizes the team’s “significant advances to the state of the art in autonomous aircraft operations on a carrier and in the aerial refueling environment that have been demonstrated and enabled by the X-47B UCAS-D’s very successful aircraft design.” The award will be presented on August 4, 2016 by the AIAA National Capital Section, Patuxent River Chapter.

    • Monique Laney, assistant professor of history, Auburn University, Auburn, Alabama, will receive the 2016 AIAA Gardner-Lasser Aerospace History Literature Award. The award recognizes Laney’s book: “German Rocketeers in the Heart of Dixie: Making Sense of the Nazi Past During the Civil Rights Era.”

    • Paul Adams,, Pratt & Whitney, United Technologies Corporation (retired), East Hartford, Connecticut, will receive the 2016 AIAA Hap Arnold Award for Excellence in Aeronautical Program Management. The award recognizes Adam’s “exceptional program management and leadership in the engineering, development, and production of ‘game-changing’ technological products, including Pratt & Whitney’s PurePower Geared Turbofan™ engine.”

    • Rakesh K. Kapania, Mitchell Professor, Aerospace and Ocean Engineering, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, Virginia, will receive the 2016 AIAA Multidisciplinary Design Optimization (MDO) Award. The award recognizes Kapania’s “significant contributions in the MDO of truss-based aircraft, efficient supersonic air vehicles, and pioneering the MDO of wings with curvilinear Spars and Ribs.”

    • Gregor Veble Mikić, chief aerodynamicist, Joby Aviation, Santa Cruz, California, and Tine Tomažič, director of research and development, Pipistrel, Slovenia, will receive the 2016 AIAA Piper General Aviation Award. The award recognizes Veble Mikić and Tomažič’s “leadership in the research, design, development and testing of practical, marketable electric general aviation aircraft concepts.”

    In addition, certificates of merit for best papers will be presented.

    For more information about these awards, or the about the AIAA Honors and Awards Program please contact Carol Stewart at or at 703.264.538. For more information on AVIATION 2016, please contact Duane Hyland at, or at 703.264.7558./p>


    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
    12700 Sunrise Valley Drive, Suite 200, Reston, VA 20191-5807
    Phone: 703.264.7558 Fax: 703.264.7551