KIRTLAND AIR FORCE BASE, N.M. – Imagine working on the future of space with some of the smallest and most versatile satellite technology available. Then, envision leading your college in nanosatellite research, as well as winning the top national award for an electrical engineering student.
Larry K. Martin, who attended the University of Hawaii at Mānoa, did just that.
He has been named the recipient of the 2011-12 Alton B. Zerby and Carl T. Koerner Outstanding Electrical and Computer Engineering Student Award.
Martin, who graduated with a bachelor’s of science degree in electrical engineering in fall 2011, was named the winner by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers-Eta Kappa Nu, the organization’s student honor society, based on his achievements as an undergraduate student. In February, Martin also received the 2012 Hawaii Council of Engineering Societies Student Engineer of the Year Award, identifying the Kailua resident as the outstanding student engineer in Hawaii for 2011. In addition, he was recognized by his university as the fall 2011 Outstanding Graduating Senior in Electrical Engineering.
The honoree, who managed his college’s satellite program, assisted in writing several proposals, which resulted in two NASA launch opportunities in 2013-14.
As a participant in the University Nanosatellite Program, led by the Air Force Research Laboratory’s Space Vehicles Directorate here, Martin, now a graduate student at the same institution, learned and applied the basics of satellite design, development and construction and that experience helped him win the distinguished honor.
“While I’m overwhelmed with a sense of joy and humility to earn such an achievement, it’s important to recognize that doing so would not have been possible without the support of Dr. Wayne Shiroma and the work I’ve had a chance to do as a part of the University of Hawaii at Mānoa’s nearly 11-year-old Small-Satellite Program,” said Martin. “I also have no doubt that what really made me stand out from the other nominees for this award was the unique and exciting opportunities that I had under my belt through my participation in the Space Vehicles Directorate’s University Nanosatellite Program, experiences that only a select group of students from across the United States can appreciate.”
Martin will receive the honor at the IEEE-Eta Kappa Nu awards banquet, which will be held in March 2013 in Orlando, Fla. IEEE-Eta Kappa Nu is the organization’s official student honor society for collegians and professionals in engineering, science and computing, as well as the IEEE-designated fields of interest. With more than 200,000 members and over 200 university chapters, IEEE-HKN recognizes academic excellence, leadership, outstanding character and service.
The objective of the Space Vehicles Directorate’s UNP is to train the next generation of space professionals by providing a rigorous two-year concept to flight-ready spacecraft competition, and to enable small-satellite research and development, integration and flight test. Approximately 4,000 undergraduate and graduate students from 27 universities have participated since the program’s establishment in 1999, as well as thousands of kindergarten through 12th-grade students. Nanosats weigh little when compared to most operational satellites, yet can have several experiments onboard, which makes them an excellent choice for student activity.
The UNP also seeks to encourage U.S. college students to competitively design, build, launch, and track a small satellite or nanosat. It remains the only program in the federal government open and dedicated exclusively to U.S.-university participation in spacecraft development.
Submitted by the 377th Air Base Wing, Kirtland Air Force Base, NM