Joseph P. Abrahamson announced as the FAA Center of Excellence Student of the Year Award Recipient
Monday, April 25, 2016

Story shared from the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences

- April 25, 2016

Joseph P. Abrahamson has received the FAA Center of Excellence Student of the Year (SOY) Award. Nationally competed, it is sponsored by the Department of Transportation, Council of University Transportation Centers and corporate affiliates. Joseph has also won the FAA ASCENT Joseph A. Hartman Student Paper Competition – a peer-reviewed process to select the best paper with focus on the environmental impact of the aviation industry. Joseph is presently a graduate student in The John and Willie Leone Family Department of Energy and Mineral Engineering at Penn State, pursuing his Ph.D. under the guidance of Professor Randy L. Vander Wal.

The emerging use of alternative fuels with varied compositions markedly changes the non-volatile particulate matter (nvPM) emissions from jet aircraft. These measures in particular are relevant to potential regulations, given increasing recognition of their impacts on both climate and human health. Emission indices can vary with engine power, and are strongly dependent upon fuel composition. Joseph is developing predictive tools based on data compiled across a comprehensive set of NASA coordinated field campaigns to separate nvPM fuel dependence from engine combustor conditions in order to develop predictive tools for nvPM emission indices for alternative fuels, in partnership with GE Aviation.

Joseph will be receiving his award and giving an invited presentation on his research accomplishments at the upcoming FAA ASCENT – Aviation Sustainability Center meeting this April, with academia and industry attendance. Penn State is a member school of ASCENT, formally known as the Center for Alternative Jet Fuels and Environment, led by Washington State University and MIT.  ASCENT works to create science-based solution for the aviation industry’s biggest challenges, see Joseph will be awarded the SOY in person by the National Program Director, FAA Centers of Excellence, and the Hartman award by the ASCENT Program Director on April 27th in Alexandria, VA.