Graduate School Awards Faculty Academic Promotions and Tenure

Posted Wednesday, August 23, 2023



The Air Force Institute of Technology’s Graduate School of Engineering and Management completed the academic year 2022-23 promotion and tenure cycle. Eight faculty members underwent a rigorous evaluation of their teaching, scholarship and service resulting in promotion of academic rank and/or award of tenure.

Cumulatively, the faculty members have advised more than 140 students and received more than $17.6M in sponsored research funding. Their research resulted in 13 patents, more than 900 publications, and 2 textbooks with more than 16,680 citations per Google Scholar.

“Achieving promotion and tenure is the ultimate testimony of the superior performance of academicians,” said Dr. Adedeji Badiru, Dean, Graduate School of Engineering and Management. “I am very proud of the performance of our faculty here at AFIT in comparison to our peer civilian institutions. Our faculty perform admirably in all the typical metrics of academia with respect to teaching, research, consultations, and professional service.”

Dr. Heidi Ries, AFIT Provost and Chief Academic Officer presented promotion awards on 1 August.

“Our civilian and military faculty have educated the next generation of analysts, engineers and scientists for the Department of the Air Force while also making valuable research contributions necessary to advance our nation’s military capabilities,” said Ries. “I am excited to see the progress of each faculty member’s career at AFIT and am looking forward to their continued success.”

Dr. Ramana Grandhi, Professor of Aerospace Engineering, earned tenure within the Aeronautics and Astronautics Department. Prior to joining AFIT in 2018, he was a Distinguished Professor at Wright State University, Dayton, Ohio where he served as the Director of the Engineering Ph.D. program for 15 years, and Executive Director of the International Collaborations and Graduate Programs for four years.

His research interests include hypersonics, multidisciplinary analysis and optimization, aircraft structures, risk-based design, and advanced manufacturing processes. He has obtained approximately $3M in research funds while at AFIT with a career total of about $15M. He has published 200 peer-reviewed journal articles, 250 conference proceedings, 40 technical reports, and a textbook with more than 11,000 citations per Google Scholar.

During his tenure at AFIT, he has advised one doctoral and two master’s students to graduation and is currently advising two doctoral and three master’s students as well as several visiting scholars. In his 30-year academic career at Wright State University, he supervised 25 doctoral dissertations, 50 master’s theses, and 30 post-doctoral fellows.

Grandhi has increased AFIT’s profile in the hypersonic community serving as a principal investigator for AFIT’s participation in the University Consortium for Applied Hypersonics, a visiting lecturer at the Missile Defense Agency, Sandia National Laboratories, Air Force Research Laboratory, and Navy events, coordinator of an annual hypersonic short course, and editorial board member for six journals.

He is a Fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. He has served the associations in several capacities including as Session Chair, conference organization committee, Conference Technical Chair, General Chair, awards, policies, and technical committees, Journal Associate Editor, and as a short courses instructor.

Grandhi is the recipient of many awards including the AIAA Multidisciplinary Design Optimization Award, Navy Solberg Award, Caterpillar Continuous Quality Improvement Award, SAE Ralph Teetor Award, and ASEE Dow Outstanding Faculty Award.

He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from the National Institute of Technology, Warangla, India, a Master’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, India, and a Ph.D. in Engineering Mechanics from Virginia Tech Blacksburg, Va.


Lt. Col. Milo Hyde earned promotion to Professor of Optical Physics with military tenure within the Engineering Physics Department. He is the fourth active duty military member at AFIT to receive promotion to full Professor.

He was promoted early to the rank of Associate Professor during his first tour on the AFIT faculty from 2010-2014, and was among the first selected for an extended AFIT military faculty tour of duty from 2014-2017. He returned to AFIT in 2020 after serving as the Air Force Deputy for Operations, Defense Science Board, Washington, D.C.

Hyde’s research interests include electromagnetic material characterization, guided-wave theory, and statistical optics. He has been a Principal Investigator or Co-PI on 22 grants with a personal share of research funding of $2.1M. He has collaborated with the Air Force Office of Scientific Research, Air Force Research Laboratory’s Directed Energy Directorate, and multiple Phase II Small Business Technology Transfer projects.

He has one textbook (in press), one patent, 84 journal articles, and 89 conference papers with more than 1,430 citations per Google Scholar. His article titled “Stochastic complex transmittance screens for synthesizing general partially coherent sources” is one of the top 15 cited Journal of the Optical Society of America articles since 2020.

Hyde has previously advised 10 master’s and three Ph.D. students to completion, and served on an additional 33 committees. He serves as the AFIT Optical Sciences and Engineering Curriculum Chair and is a Faculty Research Council representative.

He is a Senior Member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, the Society of Photographic Instrumentation Engineers, and Optica, and a member of the Directed Energy Professional Society and Military Officers Association of America. He has served as a guest lecturer, session chair, SPIE book reviewer, an Optica journal reviewer, and review editor for Frontiers in Physics.

As an active duty Air Force Officer, Hyde as served as maintenance officer with the F-117A Nighthawk, Holloman AFB, N.M., a researcher with the Air Force Research Laboratory and the Air Force Deputy for Operations for the Defense Science Board at the Pentagon in Washington, D.C.

He has earned several academic awards including the Eta Kappa Nu Outstanding Teaching Award, MOAA Military Faculty Award, Air Force Association General Bernard A. Schriever Award and six thesis/best paper awards.

He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, Ga., and a Master’s (Distinguished Graduate) and Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from AFIT.

Dr. Matthew Robbins earned promotion to Professor of Operations Research with tenure within the Operational Sciences Department. He joined the AFIT faculty in 2010 as an Air Force military member and then transitioned to a civilian faculty member in 2019 after retiring at the rank of Lieutenant Colonel.

His research focuses on the advancement of operations research and artificial intelligence techniques for solving computational stochastic optimization problems. He has received over $1.1M in research support from the Air Combat Command, Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, Air Force Office of Scientific Research, and the Air Force Office of Strategic Development Planning and Experimentation. He has written 37 archival journal articles and seven peer-reviewed conference proceedings with more than 960 citations per Google Scholar.

Robbins’ has advised 25 master’s and three doctoral students to completion and is currently advising two master’s and two doctoral students. He has developed two new courses and received above average student feedback while teaching four offerings annually with an average of nearly 18 students per class. He is the Chair of the Operations Research Doctoral Program Committee and initiated the Master of Operations Analysis program.

He currently serves as an Associate Editor for the journals Military Operations Research and Naval Research Logistics. He also serves as an elected council member and past-President of the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences Cincinnati-Dayton Chapter.

His research has earned recognition including a 2019 Best Paper Award by the journal Omega, 2018 Richard H. Barchi Prize from the Military Operations Research Society, 2014 Outstanding Young Member Award from the Cincinnati-Dayton Chapter of INFORMS, and first place in the 2011 Pritsker Doctoral Dissertation Award from the Institute of Industrial Engineers.

Robbins earned a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Systems Engineering from the University of Arkansas, a Master’s degree in Operations Research (Distinguished Graduate) from AFIT, and a Ph.D. in Industrial Engineering from University of Illinois.

Col. Jason Anderson was promoted to Associate Professor of Logistics and Supply Chain Management with military tenure within the Operational Sciences Department. He is a senior military faculty member currently leading the digital transformation effort at AFIT.

Anderson’s research interests include transportation, logistics management, inventory, sourcing, operations management, and simulation. He was a partial Principal Investigator for a $440K grant with the Air Force Materiel Command and the PI for a $1M AFWERX grant to develop the next generation of Air Force pilots.

He is the author of 10 peer-reviewed journal articles, one currently under revision, one paper submitted for review, and more than 100 citations per Google Scholar. He was a co-editor for the Joint Defense Analytics and Logistics journal. He established a special edition of the Air and Space Power Journal to provide an avenue for peer-reviewed military research.

Anderson has served as a master’s thesis chair for 25 students and a Ph.D. chair for one student. He has taught 16 classes across five different programs averaging close to 16 students per class, and co-taught multiple classes providing simulation-packaged games and lesson materials. He has developed new capstone courses for department programs emphasizing supply chain leadership, simulations, and analytics.

He has served as the chair of the Operations Management program that included the Advanced Study of Air Mobility program and the School of Advanced Nuclear Deterrence Studies. His AFIT leadership roles include serving as the Deputy Department Head for the Operational Sciences Department, the Air University Detachment 1 Section Commander, and the Associate Dean of Students.

As an active duty Air Force officer, Anderson was a KC-135 Instructor Pilot and was selected to cross-flow major weapons systems as a PHOENIX Reach Officer to the C-130. He is skilled in airdrop, air-land, and aeromedical missions. As an aviator, he has deployed 14 times in support of Operation IRAQI FREEDOM and Operation ENDURING FREEDOM accumulating over 1,125 combat and combat support hours during 278 sorties. Anderson is a Senior Pilot, having logged over 2,500 hours in both airlift and tanker aircraft.

Anderson is a member of the Airlift/Tanker Association, the American Society of Transportation and Logistics, and the Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals.

His academic awards include selection as the ASAM teacher of the year twice, the AFIT 2019 Centennial Mentor of the Year, and the Military Officers Association of America Operational Sciences Faculty Winner in 2019.

Anderson graduated from the United States Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colo., in 2000 with a Bachelor’s degree in Operations Research. He earned a Master of Business Administration degree from Central Michigan University and a Master of Logistics and Supply Chain Management degree from AFIT. He completed his Ph.D. in Logistics Supply Chain Management at AFIT in 2016.

Lt. Col. Robert Bettinger earned promotion to Associate Professor of Aerospace Engineering with military tenure within the Aeronautics and Astronautics Department. Prior to joining the AFIT faculty in 2017, he served as the Senior Military Analyst and Kinetic Effects Analyst for the Counterspace Analysis Squadron at the National Air and Space Intelligence Center.

His research interests include cislunar trajectory design and operations, spacecraft survivability, reentry dynamics and prediction, space law and doctrine, and optimization and control for aerospace applications. He has received 38 research grants totaling approximately $2.95M, including support from the Air Force Research Laboratory and the Space Test Program.

Bettinger has published 31 refereed journal articles, two book chapters, and 41 conference papers, including the award-winning article entitled “Cislunar Debris Propagation Following a Catastrophic Spacecraft Mishap” at the 2021 American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics Science and Technology Forum and Exposition. He holds two patents with one provisional patent application, and has nearly 150 citations per Google Scholar.

He has successfully advised 21 master’s students, 1 doctoral student, 1 master’s capstone project, and serves as the research advisor for 13 master’s and three doctoral students. Bettinger teaches graduate courses in astrodynamic reentry, spacecraft safety and survivability, multi-body dynamics, and spacecraft reverse engineering. He has created three new courses and taught 29 special study courses during his time at AFIT.

Bettinger serves as his department’s Division Chief for Faculty and Research Operations, the Deputy Director for the Center for Space Research and Assurance, the Curriculum Chair for the Graduate Astronautical Engineering degree program, and the Program Chair for the Graduate Space Vehicle Design Certificate.

He is active member of AIAA, serving as the session chairs for the 2020 and 2021 AIAA Dayton-Cincinnati Aerospace Sciences Symposiums, and a member of the honor societies Tau Beta Pi and Sigma Gamma Tau.

Bettinger is the recipient of the 2021 Air Force Science and Engineering Award for Exploratory and/or Advanced Technology Development, the 2020 Graduate School of Engineering and Management Early Career Achievement Award, as well as the 2020 Outstanding Scientist/Engineer (Mid-Career Military) Award for the Air Education and Training Command.

He is a distinguished graduate from the United States Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colo., earning a Bachelor’s degree in Astronautical Engineering. He has a Master’s degree in European History from the American Military University, Charles Town, W.Va. He also holds a Master’s and Ph.D. degree in Astronautical Engineering from AFIT.

Dr. Hengky Chandrahalim earned promotion to Associate Professor of Electrical Engineering with tenure within the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department. He joined the AFIT faculty in 2017 where he also serves as the Director of AFIT’s Microfabrication and Characterization Facility overseeing the daily operation of the cleanroom and characterization labs.

Chandrahalim has led the development of nanofabrication techniques to create 3D multifunctional microsystems on virtually any substrate. These techniques have enabled the realization of 3D freeform geometries that have nanometer-level precision — a feat which cannot be accomplished using conventional lithographic patterning methods on the same scale.

His team is actively investigating novel thin-film electromechanical transducers such as solid dielectrics, liquid dielectrics, ferroelectric, and piezoelectric thin-films to efficiently generate high quality mechanical waves in solids. The results of this research have enabled the realization of highly miniaturized frequency agile radio wave processors on chip-scale platforms. At higher technology readiness levels, these devices can be used to facilitate the implementation of Multifunction Advanced Data Link in F-22 and F-35 jet fighters with about a 100 times reduction in cost compared to the existing technology.

Chandrahalim has trained students from different departments at AFIT in the study of novel nanoelectronic-based paints to economically and accurately identify strain on aircraft parts. The team was selected as the finalist in the Air Force Materiel Command’s 2020 Spark Tank Competition.

His research has resulted in ten patents, five pending patents, and one invention disclosure.

Chandrahalim has been the principal investigator with 100% control on 13 sponsored research grants, worth $1.2M. His success is largely due to his focus on establishing research partnerships with the Air Force Research Laboratory and the Air Force Office of Scientific Research.

He has authored two book chapters, 27 journal articles, 28 peer-reviewed full conference papers, including a best student paper award winner and a finalist for the best student paper award, and 16 peer-reviewed conference abstracts, including five invited papers and one of the top 20 best papers, and has more than 890 citations per Google Scholar.

He has advised seven master’s students and one doctoral student to graduation and is currently advising two master’s students and one doctoral student. In addition, he has also trained one postdoctoral associate and six undergraduate research assistants.

Chandrahalim is a senior member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers and Optica, and a member of the Acoustical Society of America, American Physical Society, American Society of Mechanical Engineers, Society of American Military Engineers, and the International Society for Optics and Photonics. He is a peer-reviewer for several publications and is an Associate Editor for the Royal Society Open Science journal. He has served as the General Chair for the Foundations of Nonlinear Optics 2019 Conference, Program Committee Member for 24 technical conferences, including eight appointments as a Session Chair, and a reviewer for 247 articles that were submitted to 43 different journals.

He won the Air Education and Training Command’s Outstanding Airman of the Year, Civilian Supervisory Category IV for 2022, the AFIT Chancellor's Innovation Excellence Award (Junior Faculty Category) and the Society of Asian Scientists and Engineers Achievement Award.

Chandrahalim earned a Bachelor of Science degree from the Ohio State University, followed by Master of Engineering, Master of Science, and Doctorate degrees from Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y., all in Electrical and Computer Engineering.

Maj. Daniel Emmons earned promotion to Associate Professor of Physics with military tenure within the Engineering Physics Department. He joined the AFIT faculty in 2017.

Emmons’ research interests include laser kinetics, plasma chemistry, and the effects of ionospheric disturbances on radio wave propagation.

He participated in 14 research grants totaling over $2.3M, with ownership of six awards and intellectual control of $860K. He received funding for space environment research from the National Reconnaissance Office, Air Force Research Laboratory, Air Force Office of Scientific Research, Air Force Technical Application Center, Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

Emmons has published 24 peer reviewed journal articles in 14 different journals, and has more than 170 citations per Google Scholar.

He has advised eight master’s and two Ph.D. students, served on 17 additional thesis committees, taught multiple offerings of seven different space environment and other courses, and received multiple Graduate School-level teaching awards.

Emmons is a member of the Federal Space Weather Operation, Research, and Mitigation Subcommittee, representing the DOD in support of the National Space Weather Strategy and Action Plan. At AFIT, he has served as a Teaching Evaluation Tools Committee member, Engineering Physics Department Division Chief, and a 2d Lt Mentoring Program facilitator for more than 150 brand-new officers.

In 2022, Emmons won the Outstanding Science and Engineering Educator Award at the Department of the Air Force level.

Emmons earned a Bachelor’s degree in Physics from San Diego State University, San Diego, Calif., a Master’s degree (Distinguished Graduate), and Ph.D. in Applied Physics from AFIT.

Dr. Clark Taylor earned promotion to Associate Professor of Computer Engineering with tenure within the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department. He joined the AFIT faulty in 2018 following eight years at the Air Force Research Laboratory’s Sensors Directorate and six years as an Assistant Professor at Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah.

Taylor’s research interests include Bayesian Estimation, distributed data fusion, vision-aided navigation, and EO-based geo-location. He is also the Director of AFIT’s Autonomy and Navigation Technology Center.

He has supported funded research projects totaling over $3.6M, including approximately $1.9M in personal funding with sponsorship from the Air Force Research Laboratory, Army, and Navy organizations.

During his time at AFIT, Taylor has published 14 journal papers, 19 peer reviewed conference papers, one book chapter, one magazine feature article for the Fall 2022 edition of Inside GNSS, and has more than 1,900 citations per Google Scholar. Externally, he has reviewed approximately 65 journal and conference paper submissions and has been a Track Chair for the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers/Institute of Navigation Position Location and Navigation Symposium, a Session Chair for ION Global Navigation Satellite System+, and a Tutorial Instructor for ION GNSS+ and ION PLANS.

Since joining the AFIT faculty, Taylor has advised nine master’s students to graduation, with six master’s and two Ph.D. students in progress. He has taught 12 courses and two short courses to more than 100 students. Additionally, he created or completely redesigned three courses foundational to the guidance, navigation, and control track in the department. His efforts included adaptations to enable participation by distance learning students and increased statistical content. He served as the GNC Track Chair, department Awards Committee Chair, and is currently the Faculty Advisor for the AFIT chapter of the International Honor Society of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Eta Kappa Nu.

Taylor is a Senior Member of IEEE and a member of ION. He received the ION “Red Pencil” award given for reviewing activities that support ION, a best presentation in session award at the 2021 ION GNSS+ conference, and the Graduate School’s Mentoring Award.

Taylor earned a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Brigham Young University, and a Ph.D. in Electrical and Computer Engineering from the University of California, San Diego, Calif.


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