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DIANA ALSINDY

  • Brooke Owens Fellow, Class of 2017
  • UC San Diego, Chemical Engineering ‘17
  • Host Institution: Virgin Orbit
  • Mentor: Scott Paraznyski

Diana Alsindy received a B.S. in Chemical Engineering (2017) from the University of California, San Diego (UCSD). Originally from Baghdad, Diana is an Iraqi immigrant who has been passionate about engineering since she was 10 years old, watching her grandfather weld metal plates in small machine shop in the backyard of their home in Baghdad.  

Prior to enrolling at UCSD, Diana earned an Associates Degree in Physics, Mathematics, and Science. At UCSD, she was the Propulsion Team Lead for Students for the Exploration and Development of Space (SEDS) at UCSD. She was heavily involved in NASA’s CubeQuest Challenge in designing a 6U Cubic Satellite with propellant feed system, powered by a monopropellant engine. Diana also completed several successful internships while an undergraduate student, working at Northrop Grumman, NASA JPL, and Space Micro in addition to a job at UCSD's Stable Isotope Laboratory. Additionally, she was named a Gordon Engineering Leadership Fellow, and was awarded the Bahat Family Alumni Leadership Scholarship, the GKN Aerospace Chemtronics Scholarship, and the Osher Foundation Scholarship. 

As a Brooke Owens Fellow, Diana worked at Virgin Orbit as a Structures Engineering Intern, where she demonstrated Roll Tab Electromechanical Actuators operability, communication with Data Acquisition System, and created a unique test interface for qualification testing.

After completing her Brooke Owens Fellowship, she accepted a full-time offer from Virgin Orbit as a Propulsion Development Engineer, working on LauncherOne's main stage rocket engine. She is responsible for testing the Thrust Vector Control Actuator (TVCA) and creating an operational procedure for qualifying all TVCs used on the rocket. Her job also consists of creating comprehensive engineering documentation and assembly level work instructions necessary for the transition from prototype propulsion assembly to production. She hopes that one day, she can transform the space industry from “not doable” to “been there, done that.”