Rotorcraft Systems Engineering and Simulation Center

HIRAD Global Hawk

The Rotorcraft Systems Engineering and Simulation Center (RSESC) is a multifaceted research center focused on applied engineering and the Systems Engineering techniques to enhance project success. RSESC brings proven, unparalleled capabilities in systems engineering, rapid prototyping, system analysis, integration and fabrication. RSESC skills include: system design and development, analytical analysis in CFD and mechanical fields, reverse engineering, data analysis, trade studies, systems engineering, systems integration, non-destructive testing and independent verification, analysis and review.


The Rotorcraft Systems Engineering and Simulation Center was established in 2003 as an initiative between the Program Executive Office – Aviation (PEO-AVN), Aviation and Missile Research and Development and Engineering Center (AMRDEC) and the University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH). Since its inception it has grown to 22 full time employees, 25 on-call employees, and 65 students of which 52 students are working at the Boeing Huntsville Design Center.


The Rotorcraft Systems Engineering and Simulation Center (RSESC) operates under the Office of Research at UAH. The center is self-sustaining by providing professional integration and engineering solutions to DoD, NASA, and industry. A unique workforce comprised of engineers, project managers, technicians, subject matter experts and students is available to the center. Professors or research staff from other departments and centers can be engaged when specialized areas of expertise or analysis are required. Employing students fulfills a prime component of the center’s mission; the mentoring of students and providing on-the-job experience for the future workforce.


Apache Block III National Airspace Trainer (AB3NAT)

The center specializes in hardware and software systems engineering and integration to solve the problems presented by today’s advanced technology and mission requirements. The RSESC concentrates on integrating individual equipment packages, including defining requirements and going through conducting trade studies, value engineering studies, designing or modifying design, developing software, prototyping and testing. Center personnel have proven experience with retrofits, upgrades, reverse engineering and miniaturizations to improve systems to meet emerging requirements, to address obsolescence or save on overall lifecycle costs.

The RSESC multi-disciplined team of professionals has decades of combined experience in understanding requirements, clearly defining problems and developing system-centric integrated solutions. The RSESC team is lean, flexible, efficient and responsive and understands mission requirements and the hardware and software used to meet them. From defining requirements to handover of prototypes, RSESC provides solutions that smoothly integrate mechanical, electrical, and software systems, ensuring that no other system is adversely affected. RSESC management works closely with the funding agency’s technical point of contact to ensure that all aspects of the design have been addressed and expectations are met. Solving problems of complex systems is understood to be iterative. Final deliverables may consist of software, reports, government mandated documentation (including production-ready drawings, systems engineering plans, test plans, etc.), and working software and hardware prototypes.

The RSESC provides students an opportunity to work alongside researchers and engineers to obtain the real world experience critical in giving meaning to their academic education. The experience may be project specific enough that the student is suitable for direct hire by the funding agency after graduation. RSESC also supports the Space Hardware Club and reestablished the American Helicopter Society student chapter.

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