Dr. Ronald Phillips is an Emeritus Professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at the University of Central Florida. Dr. Phillips is also a member of the Department of Mathematics and an associate member of the College of Optics/CREOL at UCF. He has also held positions on the faculties Arizona State University and the University of California, San Diego. He received a Doctoral Degree in Electrical Engineering in 1970 from Arizona State University. Dr. Phillips has been an active researcher in wave propagation through random media for more than 28 years. He was awarded a Senior NATO Postdoctoral Fellow in 1977 and the American Society for Engineering Education 1983 Medal for outstanding contributions in research. Dr. Phillips is co-author of two textbooks on wave propagation through random media and mathematical techniques for engineers. In addition to optical wave propagation, his research interests include optical communications and imaging through atmospheric turbulence.
Dr. Larry Andrews is Professor Emeritus of Mathematics at the University of Central Florida and an associate member of the Townes Laser Institute in the College of Optics/CREOL. Previously, he held a faculty position at Tri-State University and was a staff mathematician with the Magnavox Company, antisubmarine warfare(ASW) operation. He received a doctoral degree in in theoretical mechanics in 1970 from Michigan State University. Dr. Andrews has been an active researcher in optical wave propagation through random media for more than 30 years and is the author or co-author of twelve textbooks on topics of differential equations, boundary value problems, special functions, integral transforms, wave propagation through random media, and mathematical techniques for engineers. He is a Fellow of the SPIE Optical Society and also author of three Field Guides on Atmospheric Optics and Special Functions. Along with wave propagation through random media, his research interests include special functions, random variables, atmospheric turbulence, and signal processing.
Robert F. Crabbs is currently the Project Manager for the Wave Propagation Research Group, a unit of UCF's CREOL Colloege of Optics and Photonics, and the Facility Manager for the UCF-managed Townes Institute Science and Technology Experimentation Facility (TISTEF) at the Kennedy Space Center. He has spent his entire career as an aerospace professional, first as a researcher at The John Hopkins University, then as a designer, engineer, manager, and owner of several small companies actively engaged in the development of instrumentation for space research programs, with customers through the DOD, and the commercial research sector.
Later, at the University of Central Florida's Florida Space Institute, Mr. Crabbs was responsible for the creation of proposals and budgets for the various projects, management of the programs, scheduling, vendor and sub-contractor selection and monitoring, development and maintenance of the facilities and infrastructure, customer liaison, staff management and personnel issues.
All of these functions carry over to the current role in the Townes Institute. Additionally, Mr. Crabbs functions as the primary UCF interface to NASA/KSC and the Air Force 45th Space Wing, dealing with badging issues, security, laser safety, planning and infrastructure.
Melissa Beason is currently working as a Post Doc with the Wave Propagation Research Group, having received her Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Central Florida. She is also the recipient of the prestigious European Research Consortium in Informatics and Mathematics Fellowship and will be collaborating with the Fraunhofer Institute, IOSB, Germany on atmospheric propagation research during the next year. Her previous education includes a Master of Science degree in Applied Mathematics from the University of Central Florida as well as a Bachelor of Science in Physics from the University of Florida. Melissa’s doctoral research focused on the theory and experimental measurement of nonclassical turbulence. She brings unique abilities and experiences to the Wave Propagation Research Group including her experience as a research scientist with Litton Laser Systems where her specialty included modeling of laser systems. She also worked as a physicist with the Naval Research Laboratory, Underwater Sound Reference Detachment and was the Principal Investigator over a major sonar research and development project.
Bruce is a Research Engineer with the Wave Propagation Research Group and is an active Ph.D. student in Electrical Engineering at UCF. He has a BS in Nuclear Engineering from Georgia Tech and a MS in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Arkansas where he worked on materials modeling. His work focus is on developing new software and instruments, and assisting with field experiments.
Joseph received his BSEE and MSEE from the University of Central Florida and is currently a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Central Florida where his area of research is free space optical communication through atmospheric turbulence. While being an active Ph.D. student, Joseph is also employed by the Wave Propagation Research Group as an engineer and researcher and is also lead engineer for field experiments. Joseph has experience in optical design, hardware and software development.
Frank is a senior research engineer in the Wave Propagation Research Group. Frank is currently developing Extinction Imager instrumentation to support fire-no fire decisions for the High Energy Laser community. Additionally, he supports general instrumentation development, and assists with field measurement campaign deployment and operation. He is a graduate from the University of Florida with a BSEE holding multiple patents for a laser-based 3D and computer-controlled volumetric display, communication test device and signal error detection for advanced rail based applications. Frank's skill set includes: Infrared systems design and development, Analog / Digital / RF circuit design and analysis, laser and electro-optics systems design and development.
Jonathan Spychalsky is a Research Engineer with the Wave Propagation Research Group. His education includes a Bachelor's of Science in Electrical Engineering from UCF. He previously interned at Harris Corporation as a lab assistant and at Pangolin Laser Systems as an embedded programmer. Jonathan’s many contributions to the team include instrumentation, experimental testing, documentation, and programming, as well as developing new instrumentation.
Franklin is a Research Engineer with the Wave Propagation Research Group. His education includes a Bachelor's of Science in Electrical and Computer Engineering Technology from Valencia College. His activities include instrumentation development, software development, data analyses, and assisting with field experiments. Franklin manages the information technology and information security for the group.