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AeroDef Student Research Poster Pitch Presentation Challenge

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Spark Innovation, Cultivate Collaboration, and Gain Recognition at AeroDef's 2023 Student Research Poster Pitch Presentation Challenge!

AeroDef and SME are delighted to extend a special invitation to the upcoming generation of researchers, engineers, and industry professionals. Embrace the chance to participate in AeroDef 's 2023 AeroDef Student Research Poster Pitch Presentation Challenge —a unique opportunity for students to present their cutting-edge research to an engaged and well-connected community of aerospace and defense experts.

Poster Pitch Presentation Winners:

Graduate Winner

Title: Hybrid Manufacturing for Compromised Casting and Forging Supply Chains
School: University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Student: Ross Zameroski
Advisor: Tony Schmitz

Graduate Runner-Up

Title: AI-Powered Smart Robotic Cells for Prepreg Composite Layup Automation
School: University of Southern California
Students: Omey Manyar, Neel Dhanaraj, Meghana Sagare, Gabriel Maymon
Advisor: Satyandra K. Gupta

Undergraduate Winner

School: California State University Northridge
Students: Daniel Cuara, Kevin Hernandez, Tatsuro Kajioka, Jeffrey Liu, Alexander Garcia
Team Lead: Daniel Cuara
Advisor: Sepideh Abolghasem

Undergraduate Runner-Up

Title: Additively Manufactured High Temperature Heat Exchangers
School: California State University Northridge
Student: Marshall Doyle
Advisor: Bingbing Li

Guidelines and Judging:

Presenters need to present a summary of their research to interested attendees and judges. Teams will be limited to 5 minutes for their formal pitch presentations.

Judging will take place on Wednesday, November 8, 2023 from 2:30 to 4:00 pm. All students will receive complimentary AeroDef conference pass for poster abstracts that are accepted.

Judges for the AeroDef's 2023 Student Research Poster Pitch Presentation Challenge are experienced leaders from industry, academia and government.

Competition Rules:

The poster must include the following:

  • Title
  • Names of author(s) and organization(s)
  • Abstract (brief summary of objectives, methods, results, and conclusions)
  • Background Information
  • Materials and Methods
  • Results (tables, graphs, charts)
  • Conclusions
  • Discussion of possible future directions, relevancy and importance to the future of Manufacturing

SME will provide each competitor with a white 40”x60” foamcore poster board, easel, and mounting materials such as push pins, tape, etc. Teams may choose to orient the poster vertically or horizontally.


The competition is open to registered students of their undergraduate program or graduate-level degree engineering programs. Currently enrolled undergraduate and graduate students will need to provide their advisor’s contact information.

Topic Areas:

Submission should address research, case studies and/or industrial applications to include, but are not limited to the following areas within advanced manufacturing:

Additive Manufacturing/3D Technology
Automation & Robotics
Composites & Advanced Materials
Digital Technologies
Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT)
Integrated Assembly
Precision Machining
Finishing & Coatings
Quality, Measurement & Inspection
Smart Manufacturing

Students must provide a description of the design along with supporting figures and photographs. Presentations will be judged on a number of factors, including:

Poster Pitch Rubric

Technical Content  60%

  • Introduction, Background and Objectives
  • Methods and Approach
  • Manufacturing Relevancy and Impact
  • Conclusion

Soft Skills 30%

  • Oral Communication
  • Visual Display
  • Responsiveness

Judges Discretion  10%

Prizes & Awards

Posters and Presentations will be judged and there will be two first place awards (undergraduate and graduate), two second place awards (undergraduate and graduate).
Cash prizes and awards, listed below (subject to­­ the quality of the entries), will be presented at AeroDef Manufacturing Thursday, November 9, 2023. Prizes include: (Awardees must be present to accept the prizes.)

  • First Prize is $1000 and a 1yr subscription to Tooling U-SME online classes
  • Runner-up is $500 
  • A certificate of achievement.
  • A recognition letter sent to the winner with a copy sent to the university advisor/educator.
  • A recognition letter sent to a student newspaper/technical publication designated by the winner

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