Dr. Alok Das, a member of the scientific and professional cadre of senior executives, is Senior Scientist for Design Innovation, Air Force Research Laboratory, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio. As the laboratory's chief innovation officer he serves as the principal adviser to the commander in formulating, planning and implementing technology and process innovation strategies throughout the organization. He also leads the AFRL rapid reaction team that utilizes innovation and collaboration, providing near-term solutions to the warfighter's highest priority urgent needs.
Dr. Das started his career as a controls engineer at the Indian Space Research Organization, designing attitude control systems for some of India's initial earth observation satellites. In 1984 he joined the Air Force Rocket Propulsion Laboratory. As the technical lead for the emerging large space structures area, he developed it into the Defense Department's premiere facility for developing and demonstrating advanced technologies for modeling, and precise control of such systems. Later, working closely with the Ballistic Missile Defense Organization, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, he was instrumental in the development and transition of the emerging smart structures technology. He also worked with NASA on several initiatives, including the New Millennium Program.
Since 1997, Dr. Das has focused on exploring revolutionary space mission architectures, satellite designs and technologies to radically reduce the cost, while enhancing the capability and operating flexibility of space systems. Prior to his current assignment, he was Chief Scientist, Space Vehicles, AFRL, Kirtland AFB, N.M. Dr. Das has written more than 60 technical articles on space technologies.
1976 Bachelor of Engineering degree in electronics and communications engineering, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, India
1978 Master of Engineering degree in aeronautical engineering, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, India
1982 Doctor of Philosophy in aerospace engineering, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg
1. 1978 - 1980, controls engineer, Indian Space Research Organization, Bangalore, India
2. 1982 - 1984, research associate, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Edwards AFB, Calif.
3. 1984 - 1986, aerospace engineer, Air Force Rocket Propulsion Laboratory, Edwards AFB, Calif.
4. 1986 - 1988, aerospace engineer, Astronautics Laboratory, Edwards AFB, Calif.
5. 1989 - 1993, technical adviser, Space Vehicle Structures and Controls Division, Space Technology Directorate, Phillips Laboratory, Edwards AFB, Calif. 6. 1993 - 1996, technical adviser, Space Vehicle Structures and Controls Division, Space Technology Directorate, Phillips Laboratory, Kirtland AFB, N.M.
7. 1996 - 1997, technical adviser, Space Vehicle Technologies Division, Space Technology Directorate, Phillips Laboratory, Kirtland AFB, N.M.
8. 1997 - 1998, technical adviser, Space Vehicle Integration and Demonstration Division, Space Vehicles Directorate, Air Force Research Laboratory, Kirtland AFB, N.M.
9. 1999 - 2004, Senior Scientist for Space Structures and Control, Space Vehicles Directorate, AFRL, Kirtland AFB, N.M.
10. 2004 - 2007, Chief Scientist, Space Vehicles, AFRL, Kirtland AFB, N.M.
11. 2007 - present, Senior Scientist for Design Innovation, AFRL, Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio
AWARDS AND HONORS
1988 Scientist/Engineer Excellence Award, Air Force Astronautics Laboratory
1991 Meritorious Achievement Award, American Defense Preparedness Association
1995 NASA Achievement Award, Small Spacecraft Technology Initiative Team
1999 Fellow, American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics
2000 Smart Structures and Materials Achievement Award, International Society for Optical Engineering (SPIE)
2008 Meritorious Senior Professional Presidential Rank Award
PROFESSIONAL MEMBERSHIPS AND ASSOCIATIONS
Former member, Organizing Committee, First and Second NASA/DOD Control/Structures Interaction Conference
Former general chairman, First and Second U.S. Air Force and NASA Workshop on System Identification and Health Monitoring of Precision Space Structures
Former member, AIAA Structural Dynamics Technical Committee
Former member, Joint AIAA/American Society for Mechanical Engineers and SPIE Planning Group, AIAA SDM Conference
Former general chairman, First Conference on Smart Structures and Materials, SPIE
Former member, Program Committee, SPIE Conference on Smart Structures and Materials
Former member, Mechanical Engineers Technical Committee on Adaptive Structures and Materials Systems, ASME
Former executive program chair, Space Technology Conference and Exposition, AIAA
(Current as of January 2009)