Structure Lead Team/ Structure Group/ AM Vehicle Development Dep.
After graduating from Kyoto University with B.E. in Mechanical Engineering, he joined the aerospace division of Kawasaki Heavy Industries in April 1990. In the development programs of approximately 10 models of aircraft and spacecraft, he worked as a structure and composite material engineer in the project management department coordinating engineering works and gained experience in almost every field of engineering work involved in the development of aircraft and spacecraft. In October 2017, he was transferred to the head office and was involved in launching new businesses through open innovation. He then moved to ElevationSpace in September 2022 and worked on satellite development as a project manager. He joined SkyDrive in August 2023 and is currently primarily responsible for type certification work for the structures and composite materials of our eVTOL.
While working, he earned his M.S.E. degree in the master’s program at the Purdue University School of Aeronautics and Astronautics in 2002, and Ph.D. degree in the doctoral program at the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Science of Kyoto University in 2018. He also obtained the Japanese Professional Engineer qualification in 2009. In 2023, He became a fellow of the Japan Society for Composite Materials, and currently serves as its first vice president. He now also serves as the vice chairman of the Ships, Marine and Aerospace Subcommittee of the Institution of Professional Engineers, Japan (IPEJ).
Engineering a Sustainable Future: S.A.’s Amazing Journey to SkyDrive
S.A., a seasoned engineer with over three decades of experience in aircraft and space launch vehicle development, joins SkyDrive as a specialist for structures and composite materials focusing on type certification. With a wealth of knowledge gained from his time at Kawasaki Heavy Industries, he brings his expertise to the table as he takes on the challenge of developing the perfect electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft for the company.
He began his illustrious career after graduating from Kyoto University with a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering. He spent the next 27-plus years at the Aerospace Division in Kawasaki Heavy Industries, where he worked on various high-profile development projects such as the Japanese H-II launch vehicle and HOPE (Japanese mini-shuttle) programs and the Boeing 787 program. During his tenure, he also earned his Master’s and Doctoral degrees from Purdue University and Kyoto University, respectively. His extensive experience in aerospace engineering makes him uniquely qualified to tackle the challenges of developing sustainable air mobility solutions and certification.
Role at SkyDrive:
As a specialist for structures and composite materials focusing on type certification at SkyDrive, he plays a vital role in ensuring the successful development and certification of the company’s eVTOL aircraft. He relishes the opportunity to work directly with the Japan Civil Aviation Bureau (JCAB) and contribute to the evolution of the company’s SD-05 electric aircraft technology. He appreciates the diverse and open-minded team at SkyDrive, which allows for meaningful discussions and collaboration. His experiences working on many programs including the Boeing 787 have prepared him for the challenges of certification, testing, and problem-solving.
Goals and Future Plans:
He aims to expand his skills as a structural engineer with a focus on certification at SkyDrive. Having transitioned from conventional aviation to advanced air mobility (AAM), he finds the latter to be a stimulating challenge. He plans to continue growing with SkyDrive, leveraging his expertise to create innovative solutions that promote sustainable air travel.
When not engaged in engineering endeavors, he enjoys traveling by train and indulging in local Japanese cuisine. So far, he has visited all 47 prefectures in Japan and finds it particularly enjoyable that each destination offers something unique in food, drink, and sight.
SkyDrive represents the forefront of AAM technology in Japan, boasting a diverse team of individuals from across the globe. According to him, the company’s commitment to collaboration and innovation creates a motivating atmosphere, particularly for those passionate about engineering and sustainability. As he puts it, “Working at SkyDrive, witnessing the fusion of ideas and expertise, is truly inspiring.”