Prof. James M. Longuski

Dr. Longuski (Lŏng-gŭs-skē) graduated from the University of Michigan with a B.S.E. (cum laude) in Aerospace Engineering in 1973, an M.S.E. in Aerospace Engineering in 1975, and a Ph.D. in Aerospace Engineering in 1979.  Throughout his education in aerospace engineering he specialized in the area of Flight Mechanics and Control.  His dissertation (under the direction of Professors N.X. Vinh and D.T. Greenwood) was entitled “Analytic Theory of Orbit Contraction and Ballistic Entry into Planetary Atmospheres.”

In 1979, Dr. Longuski accepted the position of Senior Engineer in the Guidance and Control section of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory at California Institute of Technology.  There he worked in the area of maneuver analysis, analytic theory of spinning and thrusting rigid bodies, rigid and flexible body dynamics, and probabilistic error analysis for the Galileo spacecraft.

In 1982, Dr. Longuski joined the Mission Design section at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, where as a Member of the Technical Staff he worked on the trajectory and mission design for Project Galileo.  Responsibilities included designing the orbital tour of Jupiter for Galileo, which required knowledge of celestial mechanics, science and navigation requirements, and simulation.

In 1988, Dr. Longuski accepted the position of Assistant Professor at Purdue University, where he is teaching and researching in the area of spacecraft dynamics and controls.  In 1992, Dr. Longuski was promoted to Associate Professor (with tenure).  In 1998, he was promoted to Professor of Aeronautics and Astronautics.  Dr. Longuski is co-inventor of a “Method of Velocity Precision Pointing in Spin-Stabilized Spacecraft or Rockets” and is an Associate Fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA).  Professor Longuski has published over 200 conference and journal papers in the general area of Astrodynamics including such topics as spacecraft dynamics and control, reentry theory, mission design, space trajectory optimization, and a New Test of General Relativity. He has also published two books, Advice to Rocket Scientists (AIAA, 2004) and How to Think Like a Rocket Scientist (Springer, 2007).