Sample Abstracts

Below are some examples of what research abstracts look like in various departments on campus. Don’t see your department? Contact us for an example. If you need help writing your abstract for DD, work with your faculty advisor or contact the Office of Undergraduate Research for help.


Title: Vortex Solitons Interactions

Author Information: Shan Guruvadoo, and AJAY RAGHAVENDRA,

Faculty Mentor Name: Stefan C. Mancas

Utilizing a rotational actuator with different paddle configurations in the Nonlinear Wave Lab at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, the velocity and vorticity fields of vortex solitons are obtained. Using a powerful HD camera for a wide range of paddles and angular velocities, formation of ring vortices that travel in the water tank will be analyzed. The vortex ring propagation is useful for sending information across an optical fiber for long distances without the need for amplification. Since such fibers capable of sending information for very long distances don’t exist yet, we will experiment with the propagation of spatiotemporal structures along the water tank. As a partial differential equation (PDE) model we will use the complex cubic-quintic Ginzburg-Landau Equation (CCQGLE), which for particular parameters can be simplified to a fifth order nonlinear Schrodinger equation.

Human Factors

Title: Simulation Research to Identify the Ideal Crew for Exploration Space Missions

Author Information Victoria C. Barkley, Sarah Glista,; Nishant Karvinkop, Shanggar Ganesh, and Margaret Micinski

Faculty Mentor Name: Jason Kring

The composition of the crew for long-duration exploration space missions can affect how the crew functions and ultimately performs; however evidence on the optimal mixture is limited. To study this relationship, we propose a series of experiments to determine which crew compositions produce the highest level of performance. In three different phases, 4-person teams will conduct simulated missions in an enclosed habitat called the Mobile Extreme Environment Research Station (MEERS). Depending on the phase, teams will spend either 2, 4 or 6 days performing a variety of tasks including research projects and simulated extravehicular activities and also complete a battery of behavioral measures on stress and mood. We will then compare how a crew’s specific composition in terms of gender, personality, age, and national culture correlates with measures of performance. Results will show which mixture of these variables is associated with better levels of performance in a simulated space mission.


Title: Development of ERAU Minion Autonomous Surface Vehicle

Author Information: Eric DeMaso and Will Shaler

Faculty Mentor Name: Eric Coyle

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University has been selected as one of three schools to represent the United States in the inaugural Maritime RobotX Challenge. This challenge requires teams to develop a fully-autonomous surface vehicle using a 16-foot high-performance Wave Adaptive Modular Vessel. The platform must accomplish multiple complex tasks autonomously, including buoy channel navigation, debris avoidance, docking, target identification and sonar localization. The system architecture consists of software nodes running in parallel to produce the complex behaviors required by the RobotX Challenge. These nodes include state estimation, health monitoring, object classification, map creation and trajectory planning. This method offers a robust and dynamic navigation solution capable of being applied to autonomous systems operating in multiple domains and not just those limited to maritime operations. This presentation discusses the development of the ERAU RobotX platform with a focus on addressing the challenges of autonomy, navigation, and propulsion in a maritime environment.


Title: Investigating UAS Operator Characteristics Influencing Mission Success

Author Information: Kristina Kendrick, and Zane Zeigler

Faculty Mentor Name: Haydee M. Cuevas

Our research objective is to evaluate how the knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSAs) of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) operators influence mission success. In Phase I, we conducted a critical review of the literature to create a UAS Taxonomy of important KSAs and a metrics taxonomy to assess these KSAs. After discussion with UAS program director Alex Mirot, our team identified a prioritized set of KSAs for further investigation: flight skill in a manned and unmanned flight environment, gaming experience, team experience, and trust in automation. In Phase II, we plan to observe flight crews, recruited from students enrolled in ERAU UAS courses, to evaluate the effect of these KSAs on participants’ task performance, situation awareness, and crew resource management during an operational mission. Findings from our study may offer insights into the development of personnel selection tools, operator training programs, and user interface design guidelines to ensure successful UAS operations.


Title: San Diego County Regional Airport Authority: Strategic Analysis and Recommendations

Author Information: Eric Harmatz, Joseph Ancona, Joshua Begin, and Rogelio Soto

Faculty Mentor Name: Dr. Janet Tinoco

This project entails an in-depth analysis and inventory of the current strategic issues facing the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority (SDCRAA), the owner/operator of the nation’s 28th largest airport, serving 8.6 million passengers in 2012. Analytical frameworks used include Porter’s Five Forces, SWOT/TOWS, as well as an analysis of various standard Airport Benchmarking metrics. As a landlocked facility on 661 acres, the airport faces a disadvantage compared to its peers of comparable size in available space to expand capacity to meet future demand. Due to the site’s geographic location – in the middle of the downtown area in the nation’s 18th largest metropolitan area, the airport faces various political, economic, social, technological, and environmental issues that need to be addressed for long term sustainability. This analysis provides recommendations based off of identifiable future travel trends to ensure SDCRAA’s long term success in meeting the transportation needs of the region.


Title: Journalism and Social Media

Author Information: Erin K. Washington

Faculty Mentor Name: Steve Master

This paper examines the values and dangers of the use of Twitter for modern day journalists in gathering and reporting the news. As my research will suggest, Twitter has been a highly useful tool for journalists in gathering and disseminating the news. As opposed to the traditional news cycles, journalists use Twitter to disseminate stories in real time, often as they are happening. Twitter is an effective news gathering tool as it allows them to communicate instantly with sources, or witnesses to news events. However, this same pull toward expediency has drawbacks, particularly in the area of accuracy, the most vital component of a journalist’s credibility. The “rush to Tweet” pressures journalists to the extent that, in some cases, sources are not appropriately vetted , resulting in inaccurate reporting. However, my research suggests that journalists will continue to use Twitter as it serves multiple purposes for both journalists and their audience.”