Richard J. Foch
Naval Research Laboratory
RICHARD J. FOCH graduated from the Florida Institute of Technology (FIT) with a B.S. degree in mechanical engineering in 1979. While at FIT, he obtained his private pilot's license and assisted with a local airport's operations. Following his graduation in 1979, Mr. Foch joined NRL as an aerospace engineer. While working for the Tactical Electronic Warfare Division's Offboard Countermeasures (OCM) Branch, Mr. Foch attended the University of Notre Dame and the University of Maryland from 1980 to 1985, and received an M.S. degree in aerospace engineering. His thesis work focused on low Reynolds number aerodynamics at transonic speeds. Since 1985, Mr. Foch has been the head of the OCM Branch's Vehicle Research Section. During this period, the Vehicle research Section has developed numerous unmanned aircraft for EW applications, including the Low Altitude/Airspeed Unmanned Research Aircraft (LAURA), the Flying Radar Target (FLYRT) ATD, and the Self-Navigating Drone, Expendable/ Recoverable (SENDER). Mr. Foch has led several quick reaction EW efforts to support Fleet activities, prior to and during Desert Storm, for which he received the Meritorious Civilian Service Award in 1989 and an NRL Special Act Award in 1991. Since earning his pilot's license, Mr. Foch has been involved with the design and construction of several homebuilt general aviation aircraft and is a member of the Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA). Also, an avid enthusiast of radio controlled (RC) model airplanes for the past 24 years, Mr. Foch also currently serves as the chief RC test pilot for the Vehicle Research Section's remotely piloted aircraft. He was the project manager for the highly successful Eager Electric Preferential Acquisition Decoy ATD and the Swallow Airborne Bio Agent Detection Unmanned Aircraft programs. In July 1996, Mr. Foch received an NRL Special Act Award for flight testing the first biological agent detector to be successfully miniaturized and integrated into an unmanned aircraft. Mr. Foch's most recent project was the design of an autonomous, robotic aircraft to fly in the Martian atmosphere for a NASA Discovery planetary exploration program. Pending the selection of this mission by NASA Headquarters, Mr. Foch will be the chief designer of the first aircraft to fly on Mars, planned for December, 2003.