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NSWC Crane engineer receives third Purdue University Materials Engineering award for exemplary accomplishments

By NSWC Crane Corporate Communications | May 8, 2019

CRANE, Ind. – A Naval Surface Warfare Center, Crane Division (NSWC Crane) employee received his third Materials Engineering award from Purdue University. Dr. Aaron Pedigo, a Materials Engineer at NSWC Crane, was recognized with the Outstanding Materials Engineer (OMSE) award for demonstrating exemplary accomplishments and leadership in his field. The award ceremony took place in West Lafayette, Indiana on April 25.

“It is an honor to receive this award,” says Dr. Pedigo. “It is reinforcement that I am doing valuable, impactful work. I enjoy finding solutions to difficult problems. With the work we do at NSWC Crane, there is always a diverse set of challenges facing our warfighters to work on.”

Dr. Pedigo earned his B.S. and Ph.D. from Purdue University’s School of Materials Engineering, and received both the Outstanding Undergraduate MSE and Graduate MSE awards prior to receiving the alumni award in April. The OMSE award has been given to 36 people since 1996 and recipients of the award are elected by a vote of the entire school’s faculty. With over two thousand living Purdue MSE alumni, the award is considered one of the highest honors Purdue’s School of Materials Engineering can offer.

“The award recognizes a body of professional work, but also my contribution to soldering and interconnect technologies, wire bonded encapsulated microcircuits, and materials analysis of electronics,” says Dr. Pedigo. “Our team recently concluded a three-and-a-half-year project addressing a challenge with electronic components. We put together a Broad Area Announcement (BAA), which ended up creating a $1.5M contract awarded to Purdue to continue this critical research.”

Dr. Pedigo started his career at NSWC Crane in 2009 while doing graduate work, and currently develops physics-based models of failure mechanisms to determine root cause of failures. He also develops risk mitigation plans to manage the risk of future failures.

“Even though I’m originally from Indiana, I was unaware of the opportunities at NSWC Crane,” says Dr. Pedigo. “I found out about Crane as an option in graduate school and finished my doctorate research here. I work with a dynamic team from diverse backgrounds in expertise, and I become a more intelligent person working alongside my teammates.”

Dr. Pedigo says he primarily works with electronic components, but he also addresses reliability of many military systems. He says together with the robust team, the state-of-the-labs, and hi-tech equipment, they are ready to test and analyze a variety of systems. He also has been involved with seven Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) proposals.

“Since we are a federal lab gathering data, NSWC Crane serves as the objective engineering authority. As a government lab, we represent the warfighter. Knowledge is powerful; we give leaders the right data they need to make tough decisions. This award shows how work being done at NSWC Crane is using today’s best science to rigorously address technical challenged faced by the warfighter, the Navy, and greater DoD community.”

NSWC Crane is a naval laboratory and a field activity of Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA) with mission areas in Expeditionary Warfare, Strategic Missions and Electronic Warfare. The warfare center is responsible for multi-domain, multi- spectral, full life cycle support of technologies and systems enhancing capability to today's Warfighter.