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Alumnus Brian Justusson awarded the Young Professional Award from the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics

U-M Aerospace Engineering congratulates alumnus Brian Justusson (PhD ‘15), Structural Analysis Engineer at Boeing, on winning the 2020 AIAA St. Louis Section Young Professionals Award for his development of structural analytic tools for composite structures. | Short Read

U-M Aerospace Engineering congratulates alumnus Brian Justusson (‘15), Structural Analysis Engineer at Boeing, on winning the AIAA St. Louis Section Young Professionals Award for his development of structural analysis that combined fundamental and applied research to standardize analysis tools.

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IMAGE:  Portrait of Brian Justusson

At Boeing, Brian has been developing a set of computer-aided tools in the field of progressive damage and failure analysis (PDFA) that work with commercial finite element analysis solvers to predict local damage within a composite structure. The current problem in PDFA is that the academic tools have not yet been widely embraced by industry because of fundamental questions about how the tools function. Justusson has worked to standardize the tools and make them broadly available to the engineering community.

“My team and I have developed a framework to evaluate these academic methods, identify technical gaps, close those gaps, and then demonstrate that we have improved predictive capability,” Justusson said.

We’re bridging the gap between academic research and applied research, and demonstrating the tool for aerospace applications.”

Brian recalls that part of his appreciation for combining academic and applied research stems from his time in the classroom under Dr. Tony Waas. “I’ve grown really appreciative of the work that Tony does because he does a tremendous job of recognizing those gaps that exist between academic research and applied research to come up with engineering solutions to solve problems that are facing the aerospace industry today.”

Brian received his Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Michigan. He later returned to complete his PhD in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Michigan, during which he was a research fellow through the US Army Research Labs. Brian has been a Structural Analysis Engineer at Boeing for five years.

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Kimberly Johnson
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