.D  E  P  A  R  T  M  E  N  T    O  F    A  E  R  O  S  P  A  C  E    E  N  G  I  N  E  E  R  I  N  G


On April 4, 1930, eleven men and one woman founded the American Interplanetary Society (AIS) in New York City. A single pioneering dream motivated them: the idea that space flight and interplanetary flight were not only desirable, but possible. Four years later, in recognition of the role that rocket propulsion would play in space flight, the AIS changed its name to the American Rocket Society (ARS).

At the same time that the ARS was pursuing these revolutionary goals, a group of aeronautical engineers and scientists saw another need. Coming from the struggling aircraft industry, which was still in its infancy, they recognized the value of aeronautical sciences and technologies. On October 15, 1932, vision became reality as the Institute of Aeronautical Sciences (IAS) was founded. At its Founders Day, the meeting roster listed 408 members. Orville Wright was its first Honorary Fellow.

Over the next three decades, aeronautics and astronautics made remarkable advances. Both societies kept current by changing with the technology and the times. In 1960, to reflect the expanding scope of its mission, IAS changed its name to the Institute of Aerospace Sciences.

But as time passed, the two societies crossed paths more and more. By the early Sixties they shared broad areas of common technical ground. On February 1, 1963, the American Rocket Society and the Institute of Aerospace Sciences merged to become the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA).

AIAA and its founding societies have been on the forefront of the aerospace profession since its beginnings. The Institute has sought to foster a sense of pride and professionalism among those who have effected profound and long-range changes in people throughout the world. This is why we take great pride in the fact that every major achievement in flight since 1963 was made by at least one of AIAA's individual or corporate members.

However, as we look back at the Institute and the extraordinary contributions of its members, we also look forward to the possibilities and the potential that our future members offer in this ever-changing and exciting field.

AIAA carries out its objectives through its numerous publications and technical meetings, its professional sections and student branches, and its Technical Information Service (TIS). AIAA participates in over 35 national technical meetings yearly (25 are operated solely by AIAA), with an audience totaling more than 25,000.

Through its affiliation with the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology, Inc., AIAA is responsible for providing Aerospace Engineering Accreditation teams to review the aerospace engineering curricula nationwide.