National Aeronautics and Space Administration

Glenn Research Center

Armando J. Hernandez

Armando J. HernandezCapitol College

  • M.S. Computer Science May 2012
  • M.A. Teaching 2007
  • B.A. Physics 2006
  • A.S. Engineering 2010

NASA Glenn Aeronautics Academy

Logistics and Operations Manager

Hometown: Dameron, MD


Academic and Work Experience

  • Great Mills High School Teacher 2007- Present
    • Certified to teach physics, engineering, computers, chemistry, and mathematics. 4 years experience in teaching and training with physics and engineering.
    • Cheerleading coach and Engineering club sponsor
    • Created/Taught CAD simulations and model development using variety of software
    • Trained students on Unmanned Aerial Systems development and competitions
    • Interned with Patuxent River VX-20 Naval Force Aircraft Test Squadron doing airplane maintenance. Studied the P-3 Orion and C-130 Hercules airplane platforms
    • Designed and built a flight simulator under the guidance of Manned Flight Systems
  • NASA Robotics Academy Robotics Engineer Research Assistant 2010
    • As a robotics engineer research assistant and project team lead, I lead engineers to develop a Distributed Swarming Robotic System.
    • Used IR for guidance navigation and controls (GN&C), microcontrollers, embedded systems, electronics installation and modification, software development, computer programming, robot modeling and simulation, and scientific equipment to coordinate the actions of multiple robots to perform a desired task and develop an autonomous ability.
    • Experience with using the MarcBot robot: an Army, tele-operated, semi-autonomous unmanned ground vehicle (UGV). Researched replacing a Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) board on it.
  • Virginia Space Flight AcademyDirector and Instructor2007- Present
    • As instructor, trained students to use robotics, robot modeling/simulation, rocketry, aeronautics, and astronomy.
    • Exposed to sounding rocket development, research, and testing based out of NASA/Navy Wallops Flight Facility.
    • Responsible for managing operations, budgeting, employment, communications, and advertisement. Developed educational computer games, a flight simulator, and trained students on orbital mechanics, flight dynamics, and space shuttle systems for entertainment and learning enhancement.
    • As a Pyrotechnics Ground Crew Coordinator, I organized, operated, and oversaw the safe operation and coordination of high-end pyrotechnics display and fireworks at local events. Experience with a multitude of ground-based, air-borne, flashing, and exploding fireworks
  • College of Southern Maryland College Adjunct Professor 2011
    • Teach Quantum Mechanics and Modern Physics
  • Living Word Community Church Sound and Light Technician 2010
  • Patuxent River Naval Base Optics Research Lab Technician2005-2006
  • Palo Verde Nuclear Generating Station Power Plant Laborer 2005
  • Science and Engineering Apprenticeship Program Computer Analyst 2001- 2002

Memberships and Activities

  • Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society MemberNational Honors Society Member
  • National Association for Rocketry MemberNational Space Society Member

Honors and Awards

  • Northrop Grumman Weightless Flight of Discovery Participant
  • US Space Camp Educator Space Academy, Path Finder Academy, and “Right Stuff” Award Recipient
  • NASA Student Ambassador
  • Eagle Scout

Skills and Certifications

  • Fluent Spanish and Learning Russian
  • Certified Locksmith
  • CDL License
  • High Powered Rocketry Certified
  • SCUBA Certified
  • Computer Languages and Programs: Java, C++, Labview, Visual Basic, Matlab, Android, Solidworks

Hobbies and Interests

  • Astronomy
  • Model Rockets and Airplanes
  • Video Games
  • Horseback Riding

Personal Statement

I was born into a strong Hispanic family in Puerto Rico. As the oldest of three, I was always pushed to excel in all that I do. Throughout my academic years, I was always at the top of the class and always carried a majority of the awards given at school assemblies. I eventually accepted an invitation into the Naval Academy just after high school. After some time there, I decided that the Navy was not for me and I gave it up in 2002 to study physics and engineering at St. Mary’s College of Maryland. There, I found my true calling and rather than sticking to my original plan of being a fighter pilot or an engineer, I started to work toward being a teacher. As a teacher, I returned to my alma mater, and have being teaching physics there ever since. During the summers when I have off, I like to venture out and see what other possibilities are in the world. Therefore, I have taken up multiple internship and employment opportunities over the summer.

In 2007, I married a local Maryland girl and started to settle down a little bit. Now, I am the father of a little baby girl born in 2010.

Professional and Educational Objective

As a little kid, I have always wanted to be an astronaut for NASA. I found the opportunity as a pilot for the military, but later disliked the idea. I traded that lifestyle for an engineering possibility to get in to NASA. However, over time, I noted that there was very little job security as an engineer. So I found an alternative way into NASA which is through the field of education and perhaps the Educator Astronaut Program. I applied twice, but got denied. Now with the fall of many NASA programs, it is unclear how I can be an astronaut. Until then, I will try to finish my M.S. in Computer Science, get an M.S. in Nuclear Engineering and continue to teach (where it is secure and fun) until another astronaut possibility arises anywhere.