Notre Dame and Lockheed Martin partner to advance aerospace research

Author: Brandi Wampler

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The University of Notre Dame and Lockheed Martin Corporation signed a Master Research Agreement on November 4, 2021, to facilitate future collaborations that advance aerospace research. This agreement showcases the mutual desire of both institutions to accelerate their ongoing productive relationship.

“Notre Dame and Lockheed Martin have a rich history of collaborating on research benefiting the aerospace industry. This agreement will enable us to build upon that relationship,” said Robert J. Bernhard, vice president for research and professor of aerospace and mechanical engineering at Notre Dame. “It represents a major step forward in Notre Dame's footprint in aerospace research; we are grateful to have Lockheed Martin as a trusted partner in this growth.”

Establishing a Master Research Agreement between Notre Dame and Lockheed Martin is expected to catalyze the development of new research collaborations because it is a more efficient structure than typical industry-sponsored university research projects, in terms of administrative work, time, and resources. 

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The University of Notre Dame and Lockheed Martin Corporation sign a Master Research Agreement

“At Lockheed Martin, we seek science and innovation wherever it originates and continuously pursue strategic engagements with leading colleges and universities across the globe,” said Steve Walker, vice president and chief technology officer at Lockheed Martin and a Notre Dame alumnus. “We are excited to partner with Notre Dame and look forward to deepening our collaboration with their distinguished faculty and students in aerospace engineering and related research pursuits.”

Notre Dame has made fundamental contributions to aerospace research dating back to 1882, when then-student Albert Zahm built one of the first wind tunnels in the United States. Now, the University collaborates with other university, government, and industry partners to develop the largest quiet hypersonic wind tunnels in the United States. This includes a Mach 6 wind tunnel at Notre Dame, a Mach 8 tunnel at Purdue University, and a planned Mach 10 wind tunnel at Notre Dame.

As part of the Master Research Agreement signing, Walker and other Lockheed Martin representatives visited several of Notre Dame’s laboratories and facilities that conduct aerospace-related research. In addition, they also discussed research at the Wireless Institute through its newly awarded NSF Innovation Center, SpectrumX, and learned about cyberinfrastructure development and trusted artificial intelligence (AI) research at Notre Dame. 

The University of Notre Dame is a private research and teaching university inspired by its Catholic mission. Located in South Bend, Indiana, its researchers advance human understanding through research, scholarship, education, and creative endeavor in order to be a repository for knowledge and a powerful means for doing good in the world. To learn more about research at Notre Dame, please visit