Archive for the ‘Engineering’ Category

MIT’s Aircraft Systems Engineering

May 17, 2012

Everyone knows that MIT has an open course project. One of them is “16.885J / ESD.35J Aircraft Systems Engineering“. I am interested in this one because it was given by top scientists, engineers and managers in the field of space shuttle design, development and operations. Therefore, it offers first hand experiences and information in terms of system engineering of space vehicles.

I personally listened through all the video lectures of this course. One thing I have to say is that it is not a systems engineering course in general. Rather, it is an “Aircraft Systems Engineering” as the title says. So, it is an excellent reference if you are taking a class in an aircraft systems engineering somewhere else, or you are in this field and want to gain more knowledge and second hand experiences, or you want to know the history of space shuttle. I learned a lot from the course. Unfortunately, most of the slides used in classroom are not available on the internet. Sometimes, you would have to guess on speakers. Please note that there are transcripts available and it is particularly useful.

While I was listening this course, I put together a list of lectures.


Building an egg shaped cabin

March 7, 2011

This is a translation from Ruan Yifeng’s blog. There are 100 images in this entry. You might need to refresh your browser to get them loaded.


At the end of 2010, the media reported that there appeared an egg shaped cabin inside an area in Haidian District, Beijing (北京海淀区).


It is MY rocket!

February 14, 2011

It is MY rocket

LUNAR organizes model rocket launch at Moffett Field every month, and the one on July 19, 2009) was definitely the biggest one. Sure it is a huge success, but there was a little problem: Many people do not follow the rules there since they are first time visitors. For example, I saw some people tried to catch rockets and took away. They thought whoever grabbed the rockets could own them. No, it is not true. The model rockets belong to those who build them. When I launch my rocket, it is MY rocket.


A Day in the Life of a Programmer

February 3, 2011


I saw this curve the other day and thought it was cool. Programmers do have productivity period every day and this curve does reflect the trend, at least I think so. A lot of start-up companies let their programmers work a lot longer than 8 hours. Their bosses offered free diner so that employees will stay longer. On one hand, I understand they have a lot to achieve in a short period of time, but on the other hand, I wonder whether it is really working. Isn’t there a better way?

You can get a copy of an educator’s guide on rockets

February 1, 2011

NASA provides educational materials and one of them is called “Rockets – An Educator’s Guide with Activities in Sciences, Mathematics, and Technology“. Activities include (online listing is a little different):


Need testing as a non-admin user

August 19, 2010

For security reasons, I am required to log-in as a non-admin user at work. When I need to install an application, I will have to switch to a different account with admin privilege. Recently, I had experienced two instances in which an installation is user dependent. So an installation for an admin user account does not apply to my non-admin user account.


A Helicopter without flight recorder

May 30, 2010



On May 12, 2008, a 7.9 Mw earthquake shaked Wenchuan (汶川), China and killed at least 69227 people. 17824 people were reported missing. On May 31, a rescue helicopter carrying earthquake survivors and crew members crashed in fog and turbulence in Wenchuan county. No one survived. Eighteen bodies, including five crew members, were found.


Time for Polyhedral Meshing

December 12, 2009

Polyhedral Meshing

Triangle mesh has the advantage of flixibility. Quadrilateral mesh is good for finite different scheme. What about generatl polyhedral Meshes?


Every Scientist&Engineer@universe Should Have A Facebook Page

November 3, 2009

Keith Cowing thinks that “Everyone@NASA Should Have A Facebook Page” which I agree. In fact, I think what he is thinking is similar to what I have said: “Engineers, please write blog or diary“.

The possible capacity of Long March 5

September 26, 2009

Long March rocket (长征) is a family of expendable launch systems operated by China. Development and design falls under the auspices of the China Academy of Launch Vehicle Technology. In English, the rockets are abbreviated as LM- for export and CZ- within China. The rockets are named after the Long March of Chinese communist history.