Naira Hovakimyan started out as a mathematician in Armenia after graduating in a republic of the USSR with a Master’s degree in theoretical mechanics and applied mathematics. She later went to Moscow to complete her PhD. in physics and mathematics.
From there she went on to travel around the world teaching and studying, earning a Young Investigator Best Paper Award in Japan along the way. Eventually she came to the U.S. to develop the L1 adaptive control theory at Virginia Tech.
Hovakimyan joined the Illinois faculty in 2008. She started the Advanced Controls Research Lab, which has close ties with NASA. Her patented L1 adaptive controller has had marketing inquiries from commercial aviation as well as drone markets.
Read more about Hovakimyan here.
Read the article from MechSE Illinois about Hovakimyan’s hope to combine drones with ride sharing here.
Vignette written by: Taylor Tucker, July 2017
Updated: September 2018