Christopher L. Bertagne

Thermal Engineer at NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory



Work Experience

Thermal Engineer

NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, CA
September 2016-Present

• Provide sustained thermal engineering support on flight projects or technology development tasks in order to meet thermal element deliverables, including competed mission proposals.
• Identify feasible thermal architectures and mature designs through conceptual, preliminary, and detailed design phases using practical passive and active thermal control techniques.
• Support design trade studies that successfully balance performance margins, resource use, risk, cost, and schedule.

NASA Space Technology Research Fellow

Dr. Darren Hartl, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX
August 2014–August 2016

• Developed, implemented, and demonstrated modeling tools to simulate the behavior of morphing radiators for spacecraft thermal control systems.
• Designed and fabricated a fully-functional prototype morphing radiator.
• Worked with engineers in the Crew and Thermal Systems Branch at NASA Johnson Space Center to test prototype morphing radiator in a thermal vacuum chamber.
• Led a team of four students in designing and fabricating a thermally-conductive and compliant composite panel for a morphing radiator.
• Conducted design/trade studies to select a morphing radiator panel satisfying both thermal and structural requirements.

Graduate Research Assistant / Teaching Assistant

Dr. Darren Hartl, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX
January–August 2014

• Developed, implemented, and validated reduced-order models of shape memory alloy actuators for Boeing.
• Developed and implemented modeling tools to simulate feedback control of morphing structures using high-fidelity finite element models.
• Graded homework and gave guest lectures for senior-level aerospace structural analysis course.


Department of Aerospace Engineering, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX
October 2009–December 2013

• Administered department’s web-based IT resources including intranet, databases, and web servers.
• Designed and developed departmental website, which served 380,000 pages to 55,000 unique visitors in a 12-month period.
• Composed detailed documentation of department’s web-based resources.

Intern, Student Engineer

The Boeing Company, Mesa, AZ
June–August 2013, December 2013–January 2014

• Interned in Vehicle Management Systems group, which manages flight and fire controls for AH-64 Apache and AH-6 Little Bird.
• Assisted in implementing control law specifications for AH-64 Apache helicopter.
• Developed tutorials to teach control design using Simulink.

Undergraduate Research Assistant

Dr. Raktim Bhattacharya, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX
May–August 2012

• Assisted in developing statistical methods to analyze the stability of nonlinear dynamical systems.
• Presented progress during weekly program meetings and in a technical report at conclusion of program.
• Participated in a program-wide poster competition and won third place.

Seismic Processing Assistant

Texseis, Inc.
June–August 2009

• Assisted in seismic signal processing for petroleum exploration.
• Assembled office workstations for other staff.



Abaqus, LaTeX, Maple, MATLAB, Simulink, SolidWorks, Thermal Desktop, Visual Studio


C, C++, C#, CSS, Fortran, HTML, Java, PHP, Python, SQL, XML


Arduino, Finite Element Analysis, GitHub, Object-Oriented Programming


 SAE Aero Design

• Managed one of four small groups in student-run SAE Aero Design organization.
• Designed, constructed, and utilized test stand to measure static and dynamic thrust of model aircraft engine to optimize propeller selection.
• Implemented safe and efficient operational procedures from aircraft during test flights and competition
• Assisted in construction of student-designed aircraft.
• Competed at international level at SAE Aero Design West Competition in 2012 and 2014.