For its contribution to the success of space enterprise in California, the California Launch Vehicle Education Initiative (CALVEIN), a program developed by CSULB and Garvey Spacecraft Corporation (GSC), received the Buzz Aldrin Space Education and Workforce Award from the California Space Authority (CSA).
Aldrin is an American mechanical engineer, retired United States Air Force pilot and astronaut who was the Lunar Module pilot on Apollo 11, the first lunar landing. On July 20, 1969, he was the second person to set foot on the moon, following his mission commander Neil Armstrong.
CSULB’s College of Engineering and GSC received the award during the California SpotBeam Awards Dinner in Los Angeles on Nov. 18. The dinner served to recognize and honor the exemplary accomplishments of individuals, organizations and programs over the past year, particularly those that have significantly contributed to California space enterprise.
“We are pleased that the CSA recognized the importance and uniqueness of this endeavor. It represents a marvelous example of a partnership between industry and a university, and it combines cutting edge research with education and workforce development.” said Forouzan Golshani, dean of CSULB’s College of Engineering. “Through this partnership, our teams have been able to design, prototype, test and launch more than a dozen rockets, each with numerous innovative features and with some being the first of their kind.”
The CALVEIN program was designed to integrate research and development into a rich, hands-on learning experience for CSULB students who work collaboratively with GSC personnel, engineering professors, program alumni and partnering companies and agencies. Over the years, CALVEIN has garnered ample industry and collegiate recognition for CSULB’s College of Engineering and its Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (MAE) Department.
Students in the program benefit from the experiences and knowledge passed on by industry professionals who serve as workforce mentors. CALVEIN has resulted in the end-to-end development, flight and recovery of 14 CSULB “Prospector” rockets and numerous static fire tests of student-developed rocket engines.
“The accomplishments realized by the CALVEIN students have allowed them to compete with the best and the brightest in the nation,” said Eric Besnard, a professor in the Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Department at CSULB, who was the recipient of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics 2009 Faculty Adviser Award. “This has given them the chance to work for companies and other organizations which may change our view of space travel in the decades to come, from one reserved for the elite to one accessible to most.”