Grad student recognized for work in sustainable aviation

Posted: September 28, 2022
David Mapunda

As part of a grant that the Ohio State University Sustainability Institute received from Honda, graduate student David Mapunda received $25,000 worth of funding for his work in sustainable aviation. Honda funds several areas including initiatives to help build a carbon free and sustainable future.

Aviation accounts for 2.5 percent of global carbon emissions. This percentage is expected to increase relative to the rest of the transportation sector as other segments, such as automobiles, electrify. The Ohio State University’s Center for Automotive Research (CAR) held a forum with the Sustainability Institute and several other units to explore different areas of sustainable aviation.

This work is important, and David Mapunda is here to do it. As he begins research next year, he will focus on control theory and application, as well as a deeper understanding of flight and airport operations to be able to model and simulate the impact of electrified air propulsion. Currently, his classes are helping him build a foundation for this work.

A team of three faculty working on aviation issues reviewed and ranked the applications based on engagement, technical merit and impact and Mapunda’s work came out on top. The panel felt like his application clearly articulated the issue of sustainable aviation and how he plans to contribute to it.

Mapunda says that this award aligns with his plan for research and gives him the opportunity to organize with people interested in sustainable energy. He calls this award “the foundation of everything.” It will have a meaningful impact on him as he transitions to a fellowship with the National Science Foundation Research Traineeship (NRT) Empowerment program this coming spring. 

Written by CAR Writing Intern, Cassie Forsha

Categories: AwardsStudents