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Hendrix to head UAH rotorcraft center

HUNTSVILLE – The University of Alabama in Huntsville tapped Jerry Hendrix as the director of its Rotorcraft Systems Engineering and Simulation Center to replace recently retired David Arterburn, who served as director since 2013.

Hendrix was director of Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) programs for the same group over the past four years.

The UAH RSESC is a multifaceted research center established in 2003 as an initiative
between UAH and the Aviation and Missile Research and Development and Engineering Center. The center focuses on rotorcraft hardware and software systems engineering and integration for ground and airborne systems, unmanned aerial systems and space and airborne payloads.

“These areas rank among the top needs of the U.S., and our primary research will be
applied to provide warfighter assistance,” Hendrix said. “With UAH ranked sixth in
aeronautical and aerospace research and development expenditures, according to the
National Science Foundation Higher Education Research and Development survey, we
stand at a transformational crossroads of research expansion.

“Particularly, our research at the center will focus on advanced assured autonomy, precise navigation and timing, new rotorcraft, intelligent teaming and the many aspects of unmanned aircraft systems and counter-unmanned aircraft systems.”

Hendrix’s aerospace experience includes stints with Boeing, L3 Communications and Huntington Ingalls Industries comprising more than 35 years supporting Federal Aviation Administration, NASA and Department of Defense missions.

“Growing our center is the number 1 challenge at this time,” Hendrix said. “Student support, engineering discipline and targeted internal research are critical so we can be in touch with the Huntsville community to better serve customers and raise student capabilities.”

Since its inception, the center has blossomed to 45 full-time employees, 20 on-call
employees and 70 students – 53 who are working at the Boeing Design Center South.

“It is our goal to become a national premier autonomous aerospace research center,
addressing these needs for our customers, while allowing our students to excel in top
research areas,” Hendrix said. “To facilitate this research, we will use our key experts with the fundamental aspects of engineering/tests, while supplementing system understanding with digital engineering.

“This will position UAH for millions of dollars of research supporting federal agencies and commercial enterprises.”

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