VSCL is proud to welcome four new Ph.D. graduate research assistants:
Shelby Hackett is a Ph.D. student in the aerospace engineering department. She graduated in May 2020 from the University of Florida with B.S. degrees in mechanical and aerospace engineering. During her undergraduate studies, she completed an honors thesis on range optimal control for an aircraft, looking at methods for solutions that lie on a singular arc. While in school, she completed internships at Sandia National Laboratories and GE Oil & Gas as a Research & Development intern and a Manufacturing Engineering intern, respectively. Shelby is currently interning at Sandia National Laboratories in Albuquerque, NM as a Research & Development intern. She will be a member of the Guidance, Navigation, and Control II group, working on improving GPS systems for defense vehicles. This is her second summer interning with Sandia. In the fall, Shelby will research Tightly Integrated Navigation and Guidance for Multiple Autonomous Agents, which is sponsored by Sandia National Laboratory.
Hannah Lehman is a Ph.D. student in the aerospace engineering department. Hannah has been an active member of VSCL since Fall 2017, focusing on human-machine interaction and the control of UAS with Machine Learning. As an undergraduate, she participated in internships with Rockwell Collins, Collins Aerospace, and the REU program. She graduated with the B.S. degree in Aerospace Engineering from Texas A&M University as a University Scholar, University Honors, and Engineering Honors in May 2020. As a Graduate Research Assistant Hannah researches Tightly Integrated Navigation and Guidance for Multiple Autonomous Agents, which is sponsored by Sandia National Laboratory. She is also participating in a remote 2020 summer internship at Sandia National Laboratory with a focus on machine learning.
Nidhin Ninan is a Ph.D. student in the aerospace engineering department. He graduated from the University of Kansas with a B.S. degree in aerospace engineering. During his undergraduate studies, Nidhin worked on Simultaneous Localization and Mapping (SLAM) based navigation using depth sense camera and edge detection using reinforcement learning for a Mars rover prototype being built at KU for the Mars Society’s University Rover Challenge. AT VSCL, Nidhin will be working on the Agile Technology Development (ATD) – Air-Ground Coordinated Teaming, which is sponsored by the Army Futures Command.
Ravi Kumar Thakur is a Ph.D. student in the aerospace engineering department. His interest is in the field of aerospace robotics and autonomy. He graduated with an MS(Research) degree in Electronics and Communication from the Indian Institute of Information Technology Sri City, Chittoor in 2019. For his thesis, he worked on developing machine learning-based models for estimating scene flow from stereo images. He earned his BS in Engineering Physics from National Institute of Technology Calicut in 2014. In the past, he was a machine learning engineer at Ford Motor Company, where he worked on driver assistant technology with a focus on visual odometry and object tracking. Before that, he worked at the Indian Institute of science working on the development of an endoscopy simulator. At VSCL, Ravi will be working on the project Enhancing the Cycle-of-Learning for Autonomous Systems to Facilitate Human-Agent Teaming which is sponsored by Army Research Laboratory.