Meet: Roxana M. Greenman,
Who I Am
One of my current research areas is to develop new methods that incorporate information technology into CFD design methods. I am currently researching the benefits of integrating neural networks with optimizers. Neural networks are a collection (or network) of simple computational devices which are modeled after the architecture of biological nervous systems. They have the ability to accurately learn and predict nonlinear, multiple input and output relationships. Optimizers are computer programs that search the design space for maximums and minimums. I integrate all of the above computer software together so that they can communicate between each other. I then use the integrated system as a tool to design aircraft such as high-lift devices. High-lift devices are elements that are attached to the wing (forward and/or aft of the main wing) to help the aircraft fly better and safer during takeoff and landing. One important feature is that they increase the lift of the aircraft. The high-lift devices are stowed while the aircraft is cruising at a level flight.
At Cal Poly in 1992, I started working on the High-Alpha project. My position was sponsored by a NASA Ames Research Center grant. I was basically a student research scientist. I then was fortunate to work on a CO-OP (cooperative Agreement) with NASA Ames researching forebodies of aircraft in high angles of attack flow. Since 1993, I have been employed by NASA Ames and have worked on various research projects that have been very interesting. For instance, I used CFD solutions to investigate the effects of tangential slot blowing on a generic chinned forebody at high angles of attack. Tangential slot blowing was investigated as a means of generating side force and yawing moment on the forebody. I also demonstrated the use of a numerical optimization routine to understand the significance of changing different geometric parameters, for instance, wing platform, on the aerodynamic characteristics of a transonic wing. Recently, I have optimized the high-lift performance of a multi-element airfoil by using neural-net predictions that were trained using a computational data set.
I think my mom and dad have always encouraged me to work in something that would make me happy (and so far I have!). When I was young, I used to watch airplanes takeoff and land at the neighborhood airport. As I look back, I think this was a big influence on me. Also, I was influenced when I would see my dad creating mechanical parts for helicopters. I was also interested in space because once my parents took me to a planetarium to see the eclipse of the moon. I always was interested to know why airplanes flew and why the planets and moons existed/moved the way they did in space. Thus, I chose a career that would be interesting, intriguing, and would help answer some of the many questions that I had.
Positive and Negative Aspects of Career
There are not to many negative aspects about my work. I think that is because I really do enjoy it. One thing, however, is that I do wish I could work more in the outdoors. I miss walking and studying out in the sunshine like I did in college. But at least now when I leave work I have the whole afternoon to play and I don't have any homework nor do I need to study for an exam. Another negative aspect is that I work most of the day alone. Sometimes this seems to make the days go be slowly. But, at the same time, it is a positive aspect because I can work at my own pace and have the freedom to work as I please.
Preparation for Career
Some of my interests are jet-skiing, hiking, reading, and playing at the beach! I also take Daisy for many long-walks near a lake. I enjoy playing and watching sports such as baseball, softball, football, and hockey.
My latest hobby is gardening. My favorite flowers are tulips and roses. I planted many of these and other types of flowers this past year and will plant many more in the future. I have many different colors of flowers growing in my garden. However, I despise weeding, but it does allow me to be outdoors.