Blog | Department of Aeronautical Engineering (AE)

Autonomous Technology, Laminates, Avionics, and Spacecraft (ATLAS) Research Group

Autonomous Technology, Laminates, Avionics, and Spacecraft (ATLAS) Research Group

The "ATLAS" research group - an acronym symbolizing Autonomous Technology, Laminates, Avionics, and Spacecraft - was established under the initiatives of Lecturer Debanan Bhadra and Lecturer Anas Aziz. The group, working within the Aeronautical Engineering Department of Military Institute of Science and Technology (MIST), stands as a pivotal cornerstone of advanced research and groundbreaking innovation in aerospace technologies. The principal goal of ATLAS is to break the barriers of conventional aerospace science and push the envelope in four main areas: Autonomous Technology, Laminates, Avionics, and Spacecraft.

In the realm of Autonomous Technology, the ATLAS group is passionately engaged in revolutionizing UAV systems. They scrutinize the principles of unmanned flight, research the dynamics of autonomous control, and delve into the development of efficient drone systems. Aspects of energy efficiency, autonomous control, and maneuverability in unmanned flight systems form the core of their exploration.

Laminates or advanced composites constitute the second primary area of focus for ATLAS. Recognizing the ever-growing importance of these materials in aerospace engineering due to their superior strength-to-weight ratios, the group investigates various types of composites. They probe their behaviors under different environmental conditions and aim to optimize their properties for specific aviation and space technology applications. Research is conducted from multiple dimensions, including the safe and cost-effective manufacturing, testing, and maintenance of these materials.

Avionics forms the third critical component of the group's interest. Here, ATLAS delves into the practical challenges and potential solutions related to the integration of electronic systems in aircraft, satellites, and spacecraft. From improving communication systems to enhancing navigational tools, the group focuses on the development and application of cutting-edge avionics technology.

The final and equally significant area of focus is Spacecraft and the vast realm of space engineering. ATLAS is at the forefront of the fascinating world of space technology, navigating through the complexities of spacecraft design, orbital mechanics, satellite technology, and deep space exploration. The group works on developing advanced techniques for reliable, precise, and safe spacecraft maneuvering, taking into account factors such as gravitational influences, space debris, and the effect of space weather on orbital navigation.

By weaving theoretical research with real-world applications and fostering a community of researchers, engineers, and students, ATLAS is contributing to the evolution of aerospace technology. The knowledge and innovation germinating from ATLAS extend beyond academic understanding, providing tangible technological developments that serve society at large. Each of these efforts is guided by the principle of enabling safe, efficient, and sustainable growth in aerospace, marking the "ATLAS" group as a beacon of progression in this exciting field.





Debanan Bhadra
Aeronautical Engineering Department
Military Institute of Science and Technology (MIST)

Anas Aziz
Aeronautical Engineering Department
Military Institute of Science and Technology (MIST)





Ongoing Research:

  1. Data-Driven Air Quality Monitoring: PM 2.5 and AQI Predictions for Dhaka Using Python and ML.
    The project aims to develop a predictive model for the Air Quality Index (AQI) and PM 2.5 levels in Dhaka City to provide timely information for public health interventions. Utilizing data from local monitoring stations, the focus is on offering actionable insights for policymakers. Methodologically, we are leveraging Python for data collection and pre-processing, followed by applying machine learning algorithms to build and train the predictive model. The model's performance is validated through cross-validation techniques and compared against historical data for accuracy.
  2. Analysis of thermogravimetric analysis on CNT-reinforced PMC.
    The ongoing project aims to perform thermogravimetric analysis on Carbon Nanotube (CNT) filled Natural Fiber Reinforced Polymer (NFRP) composites to investigate their thermal properties and degradation mechanisms. The study seeks to provide comparative insights into the thermal stability of these two types of advanced composites for potential applications.The testing methodology involves subjecting CNT and NFRP composite samples to controlled thermal conditions using a thermogravimetric analyzer to measure weight loss as a function of temperature. This data is then analyzed to ascertain each composite material's thermal degradation kinetics and stability.
  3. Designing a Smart UAV: Integrating Return-to-Home and Autopilot Systems for Advanced Agricultural Operations.
    The ongoing project aims to design a smart UAV equipped with advanced return-to-home and autopilot systems, specifically tailored for agricultural operations. The goal is to optimize crop monitoring and treatment by automating complex flight patterns and navigation. Methodologically, the project employs both hardware and software development: integrating GPS, gyroscope, and other sensors for real-time location tracking while also programming the UAV's onboard computer to execute complex tasks autonomously. Extensive field tests are conducted to validate the UAV's capabilities in varying agricultural conditions.
  4. Optimization of parking orbit for Earth to Mars Missions.
    The ongoing project focuses on optimizing the parking orbit for missions traveling from Earth to Mars to enhance fuel efficiency and mission success rates. The primary goal is to minimize energy expenditure while ensuring mission-critical orbital parameters. For methodology, we are employing advanced computational simulations using tools like MATLAB and specialized orbital mechanics software to identify the optimal parking orbits. These theoretical results are then cross-referenced with existing mission data to validate their feasibility and effectiveness.
  5. Investigating Aerodynamics: A Computational Fluid Dynamics Analysis of a Blended Wing Body Aircraft.
    The ongoing project aims to investigate the aerodynamics of a Blended Wing Body (BWB) aircraft, focusing on its potential benefits for fuel efficiency and lift-to-drag ratio. The goal is to provide insights into how BWB configurations could revolutionize future aircraft design. For the methodology, we employ Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) analysis using ANSYS software to simulate various flight conditions and evaluate aerodynamic performance metrics. Wind tunnel testing further verifies the simulation results for real-world applicability and validation.

Completed Research:

  1. Impact of CNT-Induced Nanofluids on the Precision Machining of Metal Matrix Composites.
    The completed project sought to fill a gap in the existing literature by focusing on the optimization of turning operations for nano Metal Matrix Composites (MMCs) using Carbon Nanotube-based nanofluid, a material relatively new to commercial aviation industries. These MMCs were particularly scrutinized for their performance in both dry and wet mechanical turning conditions. Employing Taguchi orthogonal array design for methodological rigor, the study successfully optimized the control parameters, particularly in wet environments induced with nanofluid. The research found that higher cutting speeds and lower feed rates, when coupled with an SNMG carbide insert, significantly improved the surface quality of these complex materials.

    Published Paper: Chakma, P., Bhadra, D. and Dhar, N. R. (2021). Modeling and Optimization of the Control Parameters in Machining of Aluminum Metal Matrix Nanocomposite under CNT induced Nanofluid, In Materials Today: Proceedings. Elsevier.
  2. Study the Delamination Factor and Taper Angle on the Machining of Natural Fiber and Carbon Nanotube Reinforced Composites.
    The completed project aimed to explore a little-researched area in mechanical engineering: the impact of drilling on hybrid nanocomposites, specifically those reinforced with natural fibers like Sisal and Coir, and Carbon Nanotubes (CNT). This research fills an existing gap in the literature and has applications in industries like aviation and automobiles. Using the hand lay-up method for composite fabrication, the study varied the weight fractions of the natural fibers and examined how different drilling parameters influenced hole quality metrics such as roundness error, delamination factor, and taper angle. It was determined that a unit ratio of weight fractions between sisal and coir fibers resulted in minimized delamination and improved hole quality, offering valuable insights for manufacturing industries.

    Published Paper: Bhadra, D., & Dhar, N. R. (2022). Study of the Delamination Factor and Taper Angle in Drilling of Natural Fiber Reinforced Epoxy Nanocomposite Materials. In Materials Today: Proceedings. Elsevier.
  3. Utilizing Ultrasonic Sensors for Enhanced Object Detection in 3D Space.
    The completed project focused on leveraging ultrasonic sensors to improve object detection in three-dimensional space, a critical requirement for various applications like robotics, surveillance, and autonomous vehicles. The research aimed to enhance the accuracy and range of conventional object detection methods. The methodology employed involved a systematic calibration and data fusion approach, using multiple ultrasonic sensors placed strategically to capture a 360-degree view of the environment. Algorithms were then developed to interpret the sensor data and construct accurate 3D maps for real-time object detection.
  4. Natural Fiber and Carbon Nanotube Reinforced Composites for Aerospace Cabin Interior.
    The project aimed to develop a new class of composites for aerospace cabin interiors by reinforcing natural and glass fibers with Carbon Nanotubes (CNTs). The motivation behind this research was to achieve lighter, stronger, and more environmentally sustainable materials that meet the stringent safety standards of the aerospace industry. The methodology encompassed selecting and preparing natural and glass fibers, followed by their reinforcement with CNTs using an optimized fabrication process. The resultant composites underwent rigorous mechanical and flammability testing to evaluate their suitability for aerospace applications, revealing significant strength and fire resistance improvements.

Debanan Bhadra
Office: Room No 1015, 10th Floor, Tower II, MIST.
Lab: Avionics, Sensor and Guidance Lab, Ground Floor, 10th Floor, Tower II, MIST.