Andrew Gibson President Empirical Systems Aerospace, Inc.

Andrew Gibson

Andrew R. Gibson

President, Business Development, Aerospace Engineer


Mr. Gibson is currently President of Empirical Systems Aerospace, Inc. and is responsible for business development, proposal writing and management, overall program management, program budget management, and technical management of ESAero’s Hybrid Electric and Hybrid Electric Distributed Propulsion Programs. He has 14 years of experience in the construction and management of design, technology demonstrator and prototype programs. Since co-founding ESAero in 2003, his work experience includes design, systems integration, and testing on a diverse number of programs. He has been involved with ESTOL/CESTOL or other improved field performance aircraft for 17 years, mainly with NASA Ames Research Center. This work culminated with 9 SBIR awards, 3 of which he was the Principal Investigator, and ALL of which are related to the design, development, methodologies, tools and analysis of TeDP or HEDP Air Vehicles. The SBIRs where he was not PI, he has been the overall Program Manager and ACO. All of ESAero’s Phase I SBIRs have been extremely successful, on time, on budget, and the COR and NASA felt they received a great value. One of these SBIRs, regarding HEDP Prognostics and Health Management, was awarded ESAero’s first Phase II NASA SBIR in 2014, from which three additional Phase IIs have been awarded (NASA and AFRL). All of the SBIR efforts have led to great commercialization successes, including two Phase III efforts with AFRC for the design of the Hybrid Electric Integrated System Testbed (HEIST) and the Scaled Convergent Electric Propulsion Operations Research (SCEPTOR) X-57 "Maxwell" aircraft, which will be the world's first distributed electric propulsion air vehicle and NASA's first manned X-Plane in 30 years. ESAero is the prime contractor on this unique team effort with AFRC, LaRC, Joby Aviation, Xperimental, LLC, and Scaled Composites, which was an $20M Phase III IDIQ Award in summer 2015. 

Leveraged off of the NASA SBIR efforts, Mr. Gibson has been leading and managing electric hybrid aircraft integration and design work for General Atomics, electric hybrid helicopter design, optimization and analysis work for Electricore, Inc. for an undisclosed sponsor, HEDP system level studies using ESAero’s Hybrid Aircraft Propulsion System Synthesis (HAPSS) and Propulsion Airframe iNTegration for Hybrid Electric Research (PANTHER) for an array of Government and Industry Customers. 

Additionally, he reverse engineered the entire 747-200F fuselage (from 1969 hand drawings) to calculate stiffness and obtain mass properties data in support of Evergreen Aviation. He has led, both technically and programmatically payload performance and integration on the Global Observer for Aerovironment and more recently two additional platform applications; a subcontract support role which has been managed and worked successfully for over 5 years. He is also currently working with Lockheed ADP on designing and building a sub-scale demonstrator for a novel VTOL UAS system, and helping to manage a program with Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control to manage logistics and assemble a small UAS on their behalf. 

Mr. Gibson is a Subject Matter Expert on HEDP and TeDP systems for transformational and transport aircraft and participates in the NASA sponsored TeDP Workshops, NASA/AFRL “LEAPTECH”, the Transformative Vertical Flight Workshop, and he was a panel member during an innovative TeDP session at AIAA JPC ’12. He has been invited to submit papers both domestically and internationally to discuss and present ESAero’s work in Hybrid Electric. He recently spoke on a distinguished AIAA Forum 360 Panel at AIAA Propulsion and Energy 2015 ( He is a member of the AIAA V/STOL TC, where he was the Technical Chair for the committee sponsored 2016 International Powered Lift Conference, AIAA Transformational Flight PC, and is Chair of the AIAA Green Engineering PC. He received his Bachelor's Degree in Aerospace Engineering from California Polytechnic State University at San Luis Obispo.