Science at NASA

Check out this team of scientists, including Florida Tech professor Dan Kirk, study the way fluids slosh and bubble on the International Space Station. 

Explore Florida Tech Research

Florida Tech Research Portal

Florida Tech faculty and students are involved in cutting-edge research, in a wide variety of disciplines.

Check out all of the projects in the Research Portal that make Florida Tech a world-class research institution!

Get ready for this fun fact!

Keuper StatueFounded in 1958 by visionary physicist Jerome P. Keuper to educate area professionals working on the U.S. space program, Florida Institute of Technology got its start with an initial donation of 37 cents!

Discover more distinguishing facts with the Florida Tech Factcard!

Choose Florida Tech For a Ph.D. in Aerospace Engineering

Supporting NASA and the Space Program since 1958

The Ph.D. in aerospace engineering program at Florida Tech gives doctoral students opportunities for creative investigation of scientific and engineering problems in topics related to aerospace. Located in the heart of Florida's Space Coast near Kennedy Space Center and a large number of major high-tech engineering companies, Florida Tech was founded in support of the space program and since 1958 has offered students a comprehensive aerospace and aeronautics education.

Areas of Concentration

The Ph.D. in aerospace engineering program prepares graduates for their career using the latest body of knowledge in the industry and by providing excellent research facilities for conducting state-of-the-art research. Three areas of concentration are available for doctoral candidates:

  • Aerodynamics and fluid dynamics
  • Aerospace structures and materials
  • Combustion and propulsion

Distinguished Faculty

Florida Tech's faculty is highly distinguished with research interests in propulsion, flight mechanics and control, mechatronics, robotics, fluid mechanics, aerodynamics, computational methods, composite structures, lasers, and hurricane and wind damage, among others. Florida Tech's low student-to-teacher ratio allows students working towards a Ph.D. in aerospace engineering to work closely with professors who mentor their success.

Research Opportunities & Facilities

Doctoral students earning a Ph.D. in aerospace engineering at Florida Tech pursue research in a wide range of areas that align with their interests and career goals. The university is home to an abundance of aerospace engineering-related research centers and laboratories including:

  • Wireless Center of Excellence
  • National Center for Hydrogen Research
  • College of Engineering Center for Space Commercialization
  • Laser, Optics and Instrumentation Laboratory
  • Wind and Hurricane Impacts Research Laboratory
  • Dynamic Systems and Controls Laboratory
  • Robotics and Spatial Systems Laboratory
  • Federal Aviation Administration Center of Excellence for Commercial Space Transportation
  • Center for Remote Sensing
  • Center for Aviation Human Factors
  • Institute for Materials Science and Nanotechnology
  • Institute for Energy Systems

Doctoral students in the Ph.D. in aerospace engineering program have an opportunity to work with regional and international research organizations including NASA, Department of Energy, Department of Defense, Florida Department of Transportation and the Federal Aviation Administration.

Faculty members are engaged in a wide range of research topics which students can participate and contribute including:

  • Aerodynamic testing and wind engineering
  • Experimental and CFD analyses of non-stationery complex flows
  • Crashworthiness of composite materials
  • Astrodynamics
  • Trajectory and mission design organization
  • Spacecraft Guidance Navigation and Control
  • Graphic Processing Unit computing
  • Solid, liquid and hybrid rocket propulsion system design

Florida Tech is surrounded by thriving aerospace organizations/industries who provide internship and employment opportunities to students working towards a Ph.D. in aerospace engineering program. This includes:

  • NASA
  • Boeing
  • Northrop Grumman
  • Harris Corp.
  • Embraer
  • Piper Aircraft
  • Patrick Air Force Base


Employers seek out graduates with a Ph.D. in aerospace engineering from Florida Tech for careers in design and development, field service, marketing, software development, and research at leading aerospace firms. Employers that have hired Florida Tech graduates include NASA, Raytheon, Northrop Grumman, Boeing, Harris Corp., GE, Pratt and Whitney, U.S. Army, U.S. Navy, U.S. Air Force, and Mainstream Engineering.