Purdue doctoral student receives Amelia Earhart Fellowship to study spacecraft dynamics

Maaninee Gupta is one of the recipients of this prestigious annual fellowship, which supports women in the aerospace industry.

Maaninee Gupta seated in front of a laptop

A Purdue PhD student studying spacecraft trajectory design at Purdue has been selected to receive the Zonta International Amelia Earhart Fellowship. Maaninee Gupta came to Purdue in 2014 for her bachelor’s degree in Aeronautics and Astronautics, and has remained here for her postgraduate studies.

Gupta is one of 30 women receiving the Amelia Earhart Fellowship in 2022.

This fellowship was established in 1938 in honor of Earhart, who joined Purdue in 1935 as a counselor in the study of careers for women and an advisor in aeronautics. Zonta International aims to help women in the aerospace industry to be represented in decision-making positions on an equal basis with men.

“I was ecstatic when I received the email notifying me of my selection! It is truly humbling and inspiring to be selected alongside such accomplished and wonderful women in aerospace,” Gupta says.

With her $10,000 fellowship, Gupta will continue the research she has been doing in cislunar spacecraft dynamics with Kathleen Howell, who is Gupta’s advisor and the Hsu Lo Distinguished Professor of Aeronautics and Astronautics at Purdue. Gupta has been working with Howell’s Multi-Body Dynamics Research Group since 2018.

“As we see (and expect) increasing activity near the Moon, it is important to be able to maintain knowledge of objects in cislunar space,” Gupta says. “This research seeks to expand our current capabilities for monitoring the large volume of space enclosed within the lunar orbit via Space Domain Awareness.”