The Ann and H.J. Smead Department of Aerospace Engineering Sciences at the University of Colorado Boulder has had a record-breaking year for research funding, bringing in $53 million in awards.
The fiscal year 2021 number, which totals $53,101,624, blasts by the previous record of $33.2 million, set just one year ago in 2020.
CU Boulder ranks in the top 5 percent of all U.S. schools in aerospace expenditures and in the top 10 percent for overall research, according to American Society for Engineering Education 2020 Profiles.
“We couldn’t be prouder of the work going on in Smead Aerospace,” said Massimo Ruzzene, Associate Dean for Research. “As a Tier 1 institution, CU Boulder is on the forefront of research in engineering, and the growth we’ve seen in aerospace demonstrates that.”
The department’s research revenue has more than tripled over the last five years. Aerospace Chair and Professor Brian Argrow credits additional investment in both traditional aerospace fields and a push into new areas. The department has ongoing work in astrodynamics, modeling and simulation, hypersonics, space life-sciences, and uncrewed aircraft systems (drones).
“The $10 million Ann Smead and Michael Byram gift in 2017, coupled with the campus investment in our new Aerospace Engineering Sciences Building are the accelerants enabling our faculty, staff, and student research teams to achieve new heights in research, of which dollars are but one measure, while reputation and competitiveness are others,” Argrow said.
U.S. News and World Report ranks Smead Aerospace as the #6 public undergraduate program and #7 public graduate program among all universities.
The FY 2021 awards includes 224 unique grants for research advancing frontiers across aviation and space, with grants coming from NASA, the National Science Foundation, private businesses, universities, and other organizations.
Header Photo: Students working with Professor Tim Minton.