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Research reaching for the sky

Oklahoma State University is focused on producing top-tier research and cultivating future aerospace and STEM leaders. With multiple projects aboard the International Space Station, cutting-edge unmanned vehicle research and aircraft sustainment expertise emerging from state-of-the-art facilities, OSU continues to build on its legacy as Oklahoma’s aerospace leader.

1stfor FAA approval of fixed-wing swarms.

OSU’s Unmanned Systems Research Institute was the first program in the nation to receive FAA approval to fly unmanned fixed-wing aircraft in swarms of up to 20 within the national airspace system.

1stfor FAA approval of beyond visual line of sight.

The first university in the nation approved by the FAA to conduct Beyond Visual Line of Sight research flights, OSU continues to improve autonomous safety systems and better airspace management.

From Stillwater to space

OSU is the only university with two research projects through NASA’s EPSCoR program that have been aboard the International Space Station. The first was a radiation dosimeter designed to help understand and eventually limit astronauts’ radiation exposure. The other was a lightweight radiation shielding material with the potential to replace aluminum as the outer skin of a spacecraft.
Astronaut with Pistol Pete badge on zero gravity suit

Supporting Sustainment

Our faculty and research excellence in aircraft sustainment solidifies OSU as a go-to resource for many industry leaders. Expertise in aircraft structures, propulsion and additive manufacturing, along with a laser processing lab, x-ray tomography lab and anechoic and reverberation chambers have created groundbreaking partnerships with FAA, DoD and multiple major aerospace companies such as Boeing and Pratt & Whitney.

Soaring with unmanned aircraft research

OSU’s expert faculty members are developing tools and methods to advance everything from space travel to atmospheric research and environmental sensing. Through development of unmanned aerial systems and aerospace technologies, OSU is flying high.

State-of-the-art facilities

ENDEAVOR is a three-story, 72,000-square-foot laboratory where students can take classroom theories and apply them with hands-on learning.
EXCELSIOR is part of OSU’s Unmanned Systems Research Institute. It provides high level educational opportunities for research related to the environment, ecology, weather, climate change and national security.

Where dreams take flight

Professional pilots are in high demand, and OSU’s aviation program is ranked among the nation’s top flight schools. Students at OSU benefit from expert instruction, state-of-the art aircraft and easy airfield access. The program also offers graduate-level aviation degrees — one of only 18 in the country to do so. OSU is also home to the Flying Aggies, a nationally recognized student flying club founded in 1948.

Combining engineering and aerospace

OSU aerospace engineering students study the science and technology of flight and design of air, land and sea vehicles. They also have access to a retired MD-80 American Airlines plane for hands-on learning. The program includes a dual-degree option with mechanical engineering, allowing students the opportunity to graduate with two degrees in four years.

Top programs


Speedfest is a high-speed aircraft design, build-and-fly competition for high school and college students hosted annually by Oklahoma State University. OSU teams have placed first and second in Speedfest since the event began in 2011. Prior to hosting Speedfest, OSU dominated in the nation’s largest aerospace engineering contest — American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics Student Design/Fly/Build competition — beating rivals like MIT and the University of Texas, winning first and second five times between 2004 and 2010.

Space Cowboys

NASA’s Micro-g Neutral Buoyancy Experiment Design Teams program challenges undergraduates to design and test a tool that addresses a current space exploration problem. OSU has had at least one team selected for the program annually since 2015.

High-Power Rocketry Team

OSU’s rocketry team has won the Argonia Cup rocket competition since its inception in 2017. OSU’s latest design includes an autonomous glider that ejects from the rocket at an altitude of 12,000 feet and returns the payload to within two-tenths of a mile of its launch site.

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