EMA Consultants

Timothy J. McDonald, PhD President and Co-Owner

Timothy McDonald is President of Electro Magnetic Applications where he has implemented new system-modeling approaches to simulate the interaction of systems and their electronics with electromagnetic environments in a shorter time, with more accuracy, and at a lower cost. He is a consultant to NASA and DoD major primes for specialty engineering of critical systems, development of novel materials solutions to EMI/EMC problems, and in the execution of major programs that require verification to electromagnetic environmental effects.

Specific consulting projects include:
• Lockheed Martin NASA Orion MPCV – Lightning, EMC and spacecraft plasma charging simulation and testing
• Orbital Sciences MDA Ground-based Midcourse Defense Booster Vehicle – Lightning and HEMP analysis
• SpaceX Starlink (Tintin 1) – EMC Responsible Engineer
• Bell Helicopter Relentless 525 –  Lightning, HIRF and EMC simulation, design and certification support
• Korea Aerospace Industries –  KF-X Lightning/HIRF/EMC Technical Advisor, KAH and LAH Helicopter HIRF and Lightning test and analysis
• Sierra Nevada Dream Chaser – EMC Lead

Matt Miller, Principal RF Engineer II and Co-Owner

Matt Miller is a Principal Scientist II at Electro Magnetic Applications (EMA) where he leads a group providing analysis services for cosite interference, installed antenna performance and radar signature prediction. Mr. Miller has 20 years of experience in electromagnetics, business development, marketing and sales. Mr. Miller worked for The Boeing Company from 1998-2001 as an Electromagnetic Effects (EME) engineer supporting various defense and space programs providing analysis in the areas of antenna-to-antenna coupling, electro-static discharge (ESD), lightning effects, receiver intermodulation product generation and shielding effectiveness. From 2001-2005, Mr. Miller worked for SAIC-DEMACO in Champaign, IL as a Research Scientist performing code development and analysis for various types of electromagnetic phenomena. In 2005, Mr. Miller co-founded Delcross Technologies, LLC where he served as the President. Delcross developed commercial simulation tools for cosite interference, installed antenna performance and radar signature prediction.

Cody Weber, Principal Scientist II and Co-Owner

Cody Weber is a Principal Scientist II at EMA and has focused on using computational electromagnetics (CEM) to assist in the design and certification support for a wide range of aerospace vehicles. He has developed numerous high complexity models for military, civilian and specialty engineering applications simulated in lightning, HIRF, EMP, and EMI environments. Cody has served as the Program Manager for many consultation efforts on certification programs for indirect effects of lightning (LTA analysis) and CFR 25.981 for fuel tank ignition prevention. He has developed modeling techniques and tools to efficiently and accurately incorporate important EM features, including complex cable systems, into high fidelity FDTD models. The quality of these techniques and models have been validated for aircraft of metallic and composite structures as well as other unique design applications in numerous efforts. Some of these validation efforts have been presented at the ICOLSE for lightning simulation validation for a composite wing test box and full commercial aircraft. He has also presented papers at the IEEE EMC symposium for modeling aircraft cable complexities in a HIRF environment and the HEART conference to demonstrate how FDTD techniques can evaluate missile responses in an HEMP environment.

Gregory Rigden, Technical Fellow

Mr. Rigden joined the technical staff of EMA in June 1985. Since that time, he has been involved in various endeavors involving numerical investigations, experimental/laboratory work, and the development of commercially available software products.

Numerical investigations pertain to the study of electromagnetic effects involving computer simulations of EM hazards (e.g. ESD, p-static, EMI/EMC, HIRF, lightning, NEMP, HPM) and the associated interaction with such complex structures as rockets, aircraft, shelters, ground vehicles, ships, antennas, equipment racks, equipment boxes, LRM’s, multilayered circuit boards, microchips, and individual electronic components. These studies have involved both linear and nonlinear phenomena as well as the incorporation of a variety of complex materials such as frequency dependent, magnetic, and full anisotropic substances.

Throughout these investigations Mr. Rigden has developed numerous numerical techniques and approaches. Many of these techniques have been combined into the user friendly commercially available software products called EMA3D and MHARNESS. Mr. Rigden is the principle developer of these software products. He has also developed numerous front end GUI tools to aid in preprocessing and problem definition. He has recently been involved in parallelizing the software product EMA3D.

Curtis Crockett, Senior RF Engineer

Curtis Crockett is a Senior Scientist at Electro Magnetic Applications where he works on the RF Interference team. He completed his undergrad in Electrical Engineering (E.E.) at Colorado State University in Fort Collins, and is currently pursuing a Master’s degree in E.E. at University of Colorado, Boulder, where he is specializing in RF.  Curtis began his career with a rapid prototyping group, designing antennas and RF electronics for military platforms.  He has experience designing and simulating, as well as physically building and measuring RF components.  As part of the RF Interference team at EMA, Curtis is helping develop a system to characterize the broadband performance of transmitters and receivers.  The data collected from this measurement system will provide the necessary data to accurately predict and avoid unwanted interference between RF systems.

Juan Arambula, RF Engineer

Juan earned his BS in Electrical Engineering from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo in 2016. Prior to joining EMA, he worked in the cellular industry. He developed cellular RF amplifiers and ensured compliance with global regulatory standards. He developed a test stand and software that expedited compliance testing, streamlining product development. At EMA, Juan joins the RF Interference team where he is developing a broadband transceiver performance test system.

Justin McKennon, Principal Scientist I

Justin McKennon is a Principal Scientist at Electro Magnetic Applications and an industry recognized leader in understanding and simulating the effects of lightning and other electromagnetic effects, having published dozens of papers and been an invited speaker at numerous conferences and events. He obtained his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Electrical Engineering from the University of Massachusetts. He holds an FAA Designated Engineering Representative license in all lightning disciplines. His areas of expertise are in lightning effects on aircraft, wind turbines, systems, etc., finite element analysis, aircraft certification, and electromagnetic effects. He has previously worked for large defense contractors, and recently served as the Chief Engineer of NTS Lightning Technologies.

Jennifer Kitaygorsky, PhD Principal Scientist I

Jennifer Kitaygorsky received a B.S. in Physics from the University of Colorado at Denver in 2001, and a Ph.D. from the University of Rochester Electrical Engineering Department in 2008. As an undergraduate, she was a recipient of the National Institute of Standards and Technology Professional Research Experience Program (PREP) Fellowship. It was followed by a fellowship from the Civilian Research and Development Foundation (CFDR) Junior Scientist Program when Jennifer was attending the University of Rochester.

Jennifer specializes in validation and verification of EMA3D and MHARNESS, EMA’s computational electromagnetics codes, making use of her extensive experimental experience. She is also an expert in measuring electromagnetic properties of anisotropic composite materials and nanomaterials. In addition, Jennifer has consulted for major civilian and military aerospace prime integrators, as well as evaluated inductive interference coupling on railroad tracks from high voltage power lines. She has developed full-wave computational electromagnetic (CEM) simulation, converted CAD drawings to sophisticated numerical models, and performed measurements of RF shielding and EM properties of novel and mission-critical materials. Jennifer has been with EMA since 2008.

Bryon Neufeld, PhD Principal Scientist I

Bryon earned a PhD in theoretical nuclear and plasma physics from Duke University in 2009.  While at Duke he published multiple articles in the Physical Review on dense plasma systems, and received a Viewpoint recognizing him for excellent research by the American Physical Society.  After graduating from Duke, Bryon worked in the Theory Division at Los Alamos National Laboratory, where he was awarded a Director’s Funded Postdoctoral Fellowship.  At Los Alamos, he continued to work and publish across a wide array of projects related to hot plasmas and electromagnetic systems.  In addition to his technical degrees, Bryon has an MBA from Cornell University, where he graduated in the top 10% of his class.

Bryon joined EMA in 2013.  At EMA, Bryon has performed numerical simulation and model development for a number of electromagnetic effects projects, including lightning indirect effects, lightning direct effects, HIRF, and space charging.  He developed and executed simulation strategies to help determine the space charging risks for NASA’s Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle’s FT-1 and EM-1 missions.  He has also developed computational tools to bridge near-field, table-top measurement data into a format compatible with EMA3D’s numerical simulation, which can in turn be used to extract the far-field EM emission pattern.  He has developed software tools to expand EMA3D’s abilities in the thermal effects of lightning and geometry export for space charging applications.

Karen Burnham, Principal Scientist I

Karen Burnham has worked in the aerospace, defense, and automotive industries since 1996. Her most recent prior experience was doing vehicle testing and troubleshooting for Ford Motor Company, both on traditional gas engines and also newer Hybrid Electric vehicles. Prior to that she was the Lead EMC engineer for the Dream Chaser space vehicle being built by the Sierra Nevada Corporation for crew transport to the International Space Station. She has worked as EMC lead on the NASA side for the European Service Module that will accompany the Orion spacecraft. Her specialty is aerospace pyrotechnic systems, and she has conducted extensive research into the RF and lightning susceptibility of NASA Standard Initiators. She is familiar with requirements generation, verification and validation, systems engineering, and test plans.

She is an iNARTE certified Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC) Engineer with a Master’s degree in Electrical Engineering at the University of Houston and a Bachelor’s degree in Physics from Northern Arizona University. She sits on the SAE EMC working group that advises on CISPR, ISO, and SAE standards for automotive products.

Javier Pazos, PhD Senior Scientist

Javier Pazos is a Senior Scientist at Electro Magnetic Applications with experience in computational electromagnetics tools and their use in solving issues in aerospace topics including launch vehicles, spacecraft, commercial aircraft, ground systems, and more. His experience includes algorithm development, code optimization, and the testing efforts to validate those, helping to form a path to certification with the FAA, the U.S. Air Force, and more.

His PhD in metamaterial and photonic crystal designs earned him recognition for innovative use of digital manufacturing and 3D printing.  He performed pioneering work in spatially-variant lattices, including the world’s tightest optical bend achieved using spatially-variant self-collimation

Vittorio Picco, PhD Senior Scientist

Vittorio Picco is a Senior Scientist at Electro Magnetic Applications where he works on modeling electromagnetic effects for aerospace applications including precipitation static effects, EMI interference to antennas, antenna modeling and co-siting, and others. He is also involved in the preparation and execution of laboratory testing. Before joining EMA he worked for Schlumberger as a Tool Physicist where he modeled, designed, tested and supported the manufacturing and field operations of electromagnetic logging-while-drilling tools used for the measurement of the resistivity of rock formations, for well placement and for reservoir mapping. He received his PhD from the University of Illinois at Chicago in 2014, where his research focused on electromagnetic imaging for the detection of underground tunnels, through-wall imaging, and other inverse-scattering problems.

Jason Stanko, Senior Scientist

Jason Stanko earned his MS degree in Aerospace Engineering from Penn State in 2017. As a graduate student, he conducted research on rotorcraft aerodynamics and blade optimization for the Applied Research Laboratory at Penn State. Here he created a software package to automate the pre-/post-processing and execution of aerodynamic simulations on an HPC Cluster by coupling various numerical analysis tools.

Jason joined EMA in March 2018 as a Scientist/Software Developer. At EMA, he has primarily been responsible for user interface development, helping to streamline EMA’s workflow by refactoring existing interfaces and implementation of new capabilities.

Kevin-Druis Merenda, PhD Staff Scientist

Kevin graduated from Boston University (2013), MA, with a bachelor’s degree in astrophysics and mathematics, from École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (2015), Switzerland, with a master’s degree in physics, and from Colorado School of Mines (2020), CO, with a doctoral degree in physics. Kevin joined EMA in 2020 to apply his background in atmospheric electricity and elementary particle physics to impactful industry projects.  With involvement in large physics experiments such as the NA62 and LHCB experiments at CERN, or the Pierre Auger Cosmic-Ray Observatory, in Argentina, Kevin knows that every bit of efficiency is needed to achieve the imposed deadlines.

Kevin developed strong communication skills by presenting at conferences and publishing journal articles on the study of transient luminous events induced by lightning. His knowledge of numerical methods, his approach to problem diagnostics, and his data analysis skills are directly applicable to consulting project involving EMA3DCable and EMA3DCharge, the software products developed by our company.

Grant Riley, PhD Staff Scientist

Grant earned a PhD in physics from Colorado State University (CSU) in 2018 where he studied the effects of thermal lensing and shape anisotropy on spin wave propagation in ferromagnetic microstructures. After graduating from CSU, he worked as a postdoc at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in Boulder, where he led in developing a measurement technique based on inelastic light scattering to study exchange stiffness, a crucial parameter for magnetic devices in the semiconductor industry.

Grant joined EMA in 2020 and relies on his extensive experimental background in magnetics research to find impactful solutions to problems in electromagnetic compatibility.

Gregory Wilson, PhD Staff Scientist

Gregory Wilson is a Staff Scientist at Electro Magnetic Applications specializing in space environment interactions with materials and spacecraft as well as electromagnetic effects of lightning and other high voltage phenomenon. Gregory received his Masters in Physics at Montana State University and is currently pursuing his PhD in Physics at Utah State University with a focus on energetic electron interactions with multilayer materials.  In connection with his research at USU, he has worked on numerous projects contracted by NASA, SpaceX, AFRL, and other space focused organizations and was awarded a USU Utah NASA Space Grant Consortium Fellowship in connection with his dissertation research.

Gregory has published dozens of articles focusing on electron ranges in materials, secondary electron yield, surface voltage measurements, and other space based material characterization topics. He has recently worked on high fidelity electromagnetic simulations to understand the transient effects of lightning attachment. Most recently he has published an article on the need for electromagnetic simulations in the design process of VTOL aircraft.

Brian Wood, Scientist

Brian received his MS degree in physics from Utah State University in 2015, where his research focused on the synthesis and optical characterization of carbon nanotube forests. After graduation, he worked at Space Dynamics Lab to help develop a neutral particle beam emitter to help simulate atomic oxygen ablation processes in low earth orbit. He later returned to Utah State to join the Material Physics Group within the physics department to research issues pertinent for the spacecraft charging community. Here he collaborated and authored studies involving the radiation effects of both spaceborne passive materials and powered components, to understand how ionizing radiation and total dose affected their performance and material properties.

Brian joined the EMA team as a Scientist in 2020, where his main focus is the construction and development of their Space Environment and Radiation Effects lab, which will be used to validate EMA’s simulation software, as well as provide commercial availability of measurements and observations applicable for space applications.

Eric Miller, Scientist

Eric received a BS in Engineering Physics from the Colorado School of Mines in 2015. It took him three years to graduate from Mines with high honors. While at Mines, Eric focused on electromagnetism and planetary science. Along with the standard undergrad engineering and physics courses, his coursework included four combined semester courses covering planetary science (astrophysics, satellite remote sensing, etc.) and five combined semester courses covering circuits and Maxwell’s equations. Eric is now working on his Master of Science degree in Applied Physics from the Colorado School of Mines. His research has included work on anomalous atmospheric events during thunderstorms and simulating in-flight radioactive decay of recoiling nuclei. His thesis discusses using the new simulation technique to match with experimental data.

Eric has been with EMA since 2015. He has created high fidelity models of aircraft and spacecraft for lightning, HIRF, and surface charging simulations. Since becoming an EMA scientist, he has also helped expand EMA’s capabilities with antenna simulation and consultation. Consulting projects include:

  • Sierra Nevada Dream Chaser – Lightning direct effects and precipitation static coupling to antennas
  • Aurora Flight Sciences VXP – Antenna cosite and pattern distortion simulations and consultation
  • Orbital ATK Mission Extension Vehicle – Indirect effects of ESD
  • COMAC C919 – Lightning direct effects simulation and software training
  • SpaceILBeresheet – Surface charging simulations and indirect effects of discharge during lunar landing
  • San Diego Composites – Electrothermal and magnetic simulations of novel composite panels

Besides consulting and creating models, Eric has created many software tools to expedite model development and has earned a spot on the software team at EMA.

Megan Maguire, Scientist

Megan graduated from the University of Colorado at Boulder in 2016, where she earned two bachelor’s degrees in four years. She graduated at the top of both of her classes, receiving a B.A. in Astronomy with Physics with distinction and a B.S. in Chemical Engineering with summa cum laude honors. Her study included coursework in electromagnetism, astrophysical phenomena, planetary science, and material science. During that time, she pursued research in the field of astrophysics, where she studied the dynamics of supermassive black hole mergers. Simultaneously, she conducted research and wrote an undergraduate thesis in the field of catalysis and reaction engineering, where she studied the electrochemical impacts of particle atomic layer deposition on fuel cell catalysts. This research won first place in the undergraduate poster competition at the AIChE national conference.

Megan joined EMA as a Scientist after graduation. Since then, she has been involved with generating high fidelity aircraft models for the simulation of lightning indirect effects. She has also been heavily involved with developing detailed models of spacecraft equipment to simulate internal dielectric charging effects in space plasmas.

Casey Peirano, Scientist

Casey earned his PhD in Atmospheric Science from the University at Albany, SUNY. His dissertation was on the mechanisms by which hurricanes experience intensity and size changes during interaction with external low-pressure systems. Prior to that he earned his BS in Meteorology from the University of Oklahoma. At EMA, Casey has served as an application engineer in the development of the EMA3D computational electromagnetic simulation product.

Kellan Kremer, Scientist

Kellan earned a BA in Physics at Simpson College in 2016. At Simpson, he developed an interest in Atomic Molecular Optics (AOM). In the Summer of 2019, Kellan received a MS in Physics from Creighton University. While at Creighton, he spent two years conducting research in an ultracold atoms lab. That research was the subject of his thesis.

Since becoming a scientist at EMA, he has been a part of projects that involved surface and internal charging effects on a spacecraft and the effects of lightning striking an aircraft. He has also been involved with projects pertaining to MIL-STD-461 compliance for electrical equipment, focusing mainly on radiated emissions and susceptibility.

Sebastian Soldwisch, Scientist

Sebastian earned his B.S. in Engineering Physics from Colorado School of Mines in 2020. At School of Mines, he was a teaching assistant for both the intro and advanced electromagnetism classes. His work at EMA has focused on lightning and HIRF simulation, signal integrity simulation/electromagnetic measurement for the DreamChaser program. Further, he’s assisted with EMA3D development and served as an application engineer.

Charlie Becquet, Scientist

Charlie earned a B.S in Engineering Physics and a Minor in Applied Mathematics at the Colorado School of Mines in 2020. At Mines, he spent a year and a half researching the effects of additively manufactured materials in radiation environments. Since joining EMA he has focused on RF engineering, from using the HFSS simulation tool to classify and improve antenna performance, to designing a comprehensive procedure for performing proper absorber measurements.

EMA Europe Consultants

Giancarlo Guida, Senior Scientist

Giancarlo Guida joined the technical staff of EMA in 2018, serving as Senior Scientist and Account Manager. Giancarlo focused his activities on advanced electromagnetic modeling with more than 20 years of experiences in supporting main aerospace European companies in the field of the antenna/array design and antenna co-siting on a complex platform.

Giancarlo published several papers on IEEE magazines and workshops on numerical modeling in electromagnetics, antenna design, and EMC for aerospace platforms.