From May 31st to August 26th, 2016, UTC Aerospace Systems (UTAS) provided internship opportunities for two graduate students affiliated with UTC Institute for Advanced Systems Engineering (IASE). Kyle Palmer and William Hale spent their past summer working on various projects assigned by UTAS using the knowledge and skills developed at the University of Connecticut (UConn).
Kyle Palmer is pursuing a Ph.D. in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at UConn. His interest in computational research consists of test design optimization for robust fault detection and identification.
During the internship at UTAS, Kyle focused on two projects. The first project involved an analysis of an air-craft environmental control system and its effect on fault detection with uncertainty. The second project involved nonlinear dynamic models and an assessment of which models were suitable for linearization.
Kyle was able to receive a “hands-on experience” as to what engineers within the industry can accomplish. Additionally, he was exposed to the work environment of UTAS and the expectations that the industry held regarding project timelines and management. He enjoyed applying his current research into relevant projects at UTAS, and this experience has shown that modeling and simulation work is a fulfilling career path. Lastly, he stated that the collaboration between UConn and UTAS helped provide him with a unique opportunity that exceeded his expectations of a standard internship.
William Hale (Billy) is also pursuing a Ph.D. in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at UConn and has been conducting research on robust fault detection and isolation methods for aerospace applications. His interests include computational modeling, simulation, and optimization for improving system reliability.
Billy worked on three projects during his time at UTAS. For the first project, Billy investigated the effect of uncertainty on the detection of a failed component in an aircraft environmental control system. For the second project, he analyzed flight test data to determine the feasibility of creating a detection and prevention algorithm for a separate failure. For the final project, Billy developed a modular control library for an aircraft environmental control system aimed at improving control model development.
Billy claimed that, “The most important thing I was able to learn, or re-establish in my mind, is that no results are bad as long as they are conclusive”. He came to this conclusion when he determined that it was infeasible to reliably detect and prevent a failure with the current system architecture. Overall, Billy feels he had a positive impact on his projects and that this UTAS internship was exceptionally rewarding proclaiming, “If given another opportunity to work for UTAS, I would accept it in a heartbeat”.
These two experiences are just the start of what UTC-IASE hopes to accomplish. With the completion of the first building at the UConn Tech Park in early 2017, future collaborations between UConn and UTC will invite similar student experiences for many years to come.