UC Awards Mechanical Engineering PhD Candidate for Drone Research

By:    Brandon Pytel
Date: April 10, 2018

UC’s graduate school recently awarded the Dean’s Fellowship to Reza Radmanesh, a mechanical engineering PhD candidate developing novel algorithms for unmanned aerial vehicles. 

Radmanesh stands with a black shirt and bridge in the background.

Radmanesh's work on unmannaed aerial vehicles earned him the Graduate School Dean's Fellowship.

Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), also known as drones, are a big part of our society. Their benefits in advancing civilization and making life easier are countless.

Mohammadreza (Reza) Radmanesh, PhD candidate in the University of Cincinnati (UC) mechanical engineering program, is researching how to make these UAVs part of our daily life, capable of performing tasks ranging from package delivery to emergency aid.

His work recently earned him the prestigious Graduate School Dean’s Fellowship. This annual award grants five doctoral students a fellowship “to support superior scholarship that enhances the reputation of their program, department and the University of Cincinnati.”

The award includes a $20,000 fellowship and a full one-year tuition scholarship.

“This is a huge honor for me,” said Radmanesh. “Awards like these motivate students to work harder.”

Radmanesh has always been passionate about the field of flight. By combining this passion with his love of equations, algorithms and mechanics, Radmanesh found an interest in drones and the large-scale planning problems associated with them.

Through his PhD work, Radmanesh develops novel algorithms that would allow a large number of drones to engage in many different applications like package delivery, traffic management and law enforcement. Radmanesh hopes this research can eventually create drones that save lives.

“My dissertation and research is based on a futuristic vision that connects UAVs to our lives,” said Radmanesh. “When a fire breaks out, for example, UAVs can help first responders and emergency crews.”

UAVs can gather information about the location and magnitude of a fire situation and then use that information to direct first responders out of a dangerous environment.

shot from under a drone with blue sky in background.

Drones can aid in package delivery, traffic management and emergency response.

Radmanesh works under the direction of Manish Kumar, PhD, in UC’s Cooperative Distributed Systems Lab.

“Professor Kumar is one of the best advisers a student can have,” said Radmanesh. “His good nature coupled with his passion for research makes for a great work environment.”

Radmanesh’s pursuit of knowledge is impressive. He has a Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering from UC, and in spring of 2019, he is set to graduate with a Master of Science in Aerospace Engineering and a PhD in Mechanical Engineering.

UC and the College of Engineering and Applied Science (CEAS) helped make this academic pursuit possible. Says Radmanesh, “The UC faculty are outstanding, and the whole experience has been enjoyable.”

After UC, Radmanesh hopes to continue transferring his knowledge and expertise in a classroom setting. He has taught at CEAS for over a year and enjoys the rewards that come with academia and research.

Radmanesh’s thirst for knowledge will pave the way for an advanced future. His work with drones and traffic management can make lives easier. Applied to emergency aid, this research may someday even save lives.