Andrea Besnard

Andrea Besnard, Ph.D.

Associate
Thermal Sciences
Los Angeles

Dr. Besnard has over six years of professional experience in aerospace and mechanical engineering, working with various propellants, cryogenics, high pressure systems, and hazardous chemicals. She has specific experience in the mechanical design, fabrication, and testing of spacecraft, launch vehicle, rocket engine, and unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) propulsion systems and components. She has specialized in flow control and pressure control devices, applying her expertise in failure investigations and product qualification campaigns. She has experience with non-destructive testing and evaluation (NDT/NDE).

Prior to joining Exponent, Dr. Besnard worked at SpaceX (Space Exploration Technologies) as the Responsible Engineer for propulsion fluidic components in the Dragon spacecraft, servicing the International Space Station (ISS). In this role she developed product requirements, specifications, and testing/qualification procedures in compliance with NASA, ISS Safety, Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), and military standards and regulations. This role required extensive hands-on testing with high pressure and high flow systems, as well as environmental stress testing such as random vibration, shock, thermal, and vacuum conditions. Dr. Besnard has lead various component failure investigations including in-flight anomaly investigation testing, root cause determination, resolution, and documentation. While at SpaceX, Dr. Besnard conducted mission operations consisting of on-console monitoring of telemetry and spacecraft health from pre-launch to mission completion, with the responsibility of a GO/NO GO call for the maiden flight of the Dragon spacecraft. She also has experience with rocket engine/thruster hot fire testing and geared micropump design and test.

Dr. Besnard worked in the Energy and Propulsion Research Laboratory as she earned her Ph.D. in aerospace engineering at University of California, Los Angeles. There, under Department of Defense (DoD) sponsorship, she conducted experimental research examining the fundamental stability characteristics of transverse jets, with emphasis on strategic external flow control methods for altering the instability modes and optimization of the jet characteristics and mixing process. At UCLA she gained experienced in laser diagnostics, including planar laser induced fluorescence (PLIF) and particle image velocimetry (PIV).

CREDENTIALS & PROFESSIONAL HONORS

  • Ph.D., Aerospace Engineering, University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), 2019
  • M.S., Aerospace Engineering, University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), 2017
  • B.S., Aerospace Engineering, California State University, Long Beach, 2009
  • National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate (NDSEG) Fellowship, 2015-2018

    Eugene V. Cota-Robles Fellowship, UCLA, 2014-2019

    NASA JSC Achievement Award, Member of SpaceX Dragon Demo Fight Control Team, 2012

    Outstanding Graduate, Aerospace Engineering, California State University, Long Beach, 2009

    NASA Space Grant Summer Scholarship, 2007

LICENSES & CERTIFICATIONS

Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response (29 CFR 1910.120) Certification

FI-210 Wildland Fire Origin & Cause Determination, National Wildfire Coordinating Group

Publications

Besnard A, Tennakoon S, Torres J, Besnard E. Preliminary Results of a Micropump for MON-25/MMH Propulsion and Attitude Control. AIAA Propulsion and Energy Forum, Indianapolis, IN, August 2019

Torres J, Besnard A, Tennakoon S, Besnard E, Eid N. Scalable, High Performance Pump-Fed Spacecraft Propulsion System. 65th JANNAF Propulsion Meeting, Long Beach, CA, May 2018

Besnard A, Shoji T, Harris EW, M’Closkey RT, Karagozian AR. Exploration of Asymmetric Forcing on Mixing and Structural Characteristics for Transverse Jets. 70th APS/DFD Meeting, Denver, CO, November 2017

Shoji T, Besnard A, Harris EW, Schein SG, MCloskey RT, Karagozian AR, Cortelezzi L, Structural and mixing characteristics in actively controlled transverse jets. 69th Annual Meeting of the American Physical Society Division of Fluid Dynamics, Portland, OR, November 2016

 Shoji T, Besnard A, Harris E, M’Closkey RT, Karagozian AR. Effects of External Forcing on Transverse Jet Structure and Mixing. 24th International Congress of Theoretical and Applied Mechanics, Montreal, Canada, August 2016

Shoji T, Besnard A, Harris EW, M’Closkey RT, Karagozian AR. Effects of Axisymmetric Forcing on Transverse Jet Structure and Mixing. 10th Southern California Flow Physics Symposium, UC Irvine, CA, April 2016

Shoji T, Gevorkyan L, Besnard A, Smith OI, Karagozian AR, Strain Rates and Scalar Dissipation Rates in Gaseous Transverse Jets. 68th Annual Meeting of the American Physical Society Division of Fluid Dynamics, Boston, MA, November 2015

Besnard E, Torres J, Hoff T, Besnard A, Eid N. Pump-fed Propulsion Systems for High Performance Nanosats, CubeSats and Other Applications. 62nd JANNAF Propulsion Meeting, Nashville, TN, June 2015

Shoji T, Gevorkyan L, Besnard A, Smith OI, Karagozian AR. Scalar Dissipation Rates and Strain Rates for Gaseous Transverse Jets, 9th Southern California Flow Physics Symposium, San Diego State University, CA, April 2015

Prior Experience

Graduate Student Researcher, University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), 2014-2019

Project and Development Engineer, Flight Works, Inc., 2013-2019

Propulsion Development Engineer, Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX), 2009-2013

Research Assistant, California State University, Long Beach Foundation, 2007-2008

Professional Affiliations

American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (member)

American Physical Society (member)

National Fire Protection Association (member)

CREDENTIALS & PROFESSIONAL HONORS

  • Ph.D., Aerospace Engineering, University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), 2019
  • M.S., Aerospace Engineering, University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), 2017
  • B.S., Aerospace Engineering, California State University, Long Beach, 2009
  • National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate (NDSEG) Fellowship, 2015-2018

    Eugene V. Cota-Robles Fellowship, UCLA, 2014-2019

    NASA JSC Achievement Award, Member of SpaceX Dragon Demo Fight Control Team, 2012

    Outstanding Graduate, Aerospace Engineering, California State University, Long Beach, 2009

    NASA Space Grant Summer Scholarship, 2007

LICENSES & CERTIFICATIONS

Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response (29 CFR 1910.120) Certification

FI-210 Wildland Fire Origin & Cause Determination, National Wildfire Coordinating Group