Category Archives: Members in Action

UB-SEDS member featured in Buffalo News Article

UB-SEDS President Andrew Dianetti was featured in a Buffalo News article discussing the end of the shuttle program.

“But Washington’s political environment has often vilified NASA as an entity of waste.

Because of that, Andrew Dianetti, a UB junior studying aerospace and engineering, thinks the private sector needs to step up to the plate and realize the long-term advantages of going into space.

“Usually the House has one idea, the Senate has another idea, the president has another idea, and nobody can agree on anything,” said Dianetti, who is the president of UB-SEDS, a group that promotes the study of space exploration on campus. He was in Florida for the shuttle’s final launch July 8, and hopes to find a career working in the space industry.

“A perfect argument for commercial space flight,” he said, “comes when you compare what the government has been able to organize the past six or seven years — which is practically nothing — to the advancements being made by some companies,” like Boeing and Lockheed Martin.”

Matt_Poster Day

UB Represented in inaugural NASA Propulsion Academy Class

UBSEDS Rocketry Captain and SEDS-USA Director of Publications Matt Cannella worked at Marshall Space Flight center in Huntsville, Alabama as an intern in the inaugural NASA Propulsion Academy. Throughout the 10 week program Matt completed research on “Liquid-Oxygen(LO2)/Liquid-Methane(LCH4) 100-lbf Reaction Control Thruster Maturation”.  He aided in the development of a test regime for the thruster, which culminated in actual hot-firings of the engine.

Matt_Poster Day NASA Propulsion Academy Marshall 2009

UB Yuri’s Night 2008 – The Spectrum

UB to host world’s biggest space party


   This Saturday, UB students will join 49 other countries around the world in celebrating the exploration of space. Yuri’s Night, a global event that commemorates accomplishments in the field of space exploration, will be hosted by UB students for the Exploration and Development of Space (UB SEDS).

    The event, named for Yuri Gagarin, the first man to orbit the Earth, has become what is widely referred to as the “Cinco de Mayo of space.”

   “It caught on with college students and SEDS, so we brought it to Buffalo,” said Nick Alterio, UB SEDS secretary and a junior aerospace and mechanical engineering major.

   According to the event’s official Web site, Yuri’s Night marks the anniversary of Yuri’s historic journey into space on April 12, 1961. Traveling on behalf of the Soviet Union, Yuri was just 27 years old when he embarked on the journey in the Vostok-1 capsule. His flight, which encircled the Earth in 108 minutes, made him an international hero.

   The event also commemorates the launch of Columbia, the first US Space Shuttle, on April 12, 1981. This maiden voyage, commanded by John Young, launched exactly 20 years after Yuri’s landmark journey.

   UB’s Yuri’s Night celebration is scheduled for Saturday in the Center for the Arts from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. It will be headlined by local band The Waves, a group that fuses rock, powerpop and indie vibes. Other festivities include a local campus musical group, two guest speakers and free food. Party packs containing space-related items will be distributed to get students in the spaced-out mood.

   “It’s going to be a great time,” Alterio said.

   The first Yuri’s Night was willed into reality at the United Nations Space Generation Advisory Council Conference in September of 2000. Co-founded by Loretta and George Whitesides, it was held on April 12, 2001 in Sydney, Australia. It was simultaneously celebrated in 64 locations, including a large blowout party in Los Angeles. The event spread to cities such as Dublin, London, Istanbul, Vancouver, Boston and Cape Town. This year, UB will join what has snowballed into 168 parties to be held on all seven continents.

   According to UB SEDS President Brad Cheetham, last year’s event was one of the largest Yuri’s night parties throughout the northeast. He hopes that this year will be just as much of a success.

   “This year, we’re going to outdo ourselves,” Cheetham said. “We have some donations from local businesses. It’s going to be a fun hangout, and students get to eat food, listen to speakers – all in the name of fun.”

    According to Cheetham, UB SEDS promotes the “final frontier” by piquing the interest of students. The student-run organization invites members across all disciplines of study. They strive to provide students with internship opportunities, and foster communication about development of space in a variety of academic fields, Cheetham said.

   “Our goals are to promote space and inform people about why we think space is important,” Cheetham said.

   In conjunction with Yuri’s Night festivities the Mechanical Aerospace Engineering Graduate Student Association will hold a barbecue, which is scheduled to begin promptly at the conclusion of the Yuri’s Night main events.

   The celebration is free for all, and students are encouraged to join the world this weekend to celebrate the glorious accomplishments in space discovery. As Yuri famously said after his voyage,

   “Circling the Earth in my orbital spaceship I marveled at the beauty of our planet. People of the world, let us safeguard and enhance this beauty – not destroy it!”

   For more information on Yuri’s Night, visit

   Additional information about UB SEDS can be found on their Web site at

A Lunar Lander Summer

UB SEDS member and outgoing treasurer Jon Bapst was selected by the Exploration Systems Mission Directorate to serve as a summer research association at Glenn Research Center this Summer. He will be working one-on-one with a principal investgator from NASA studying cryogenic tanks and fuel storage for the lunar lander that will be used to return humans to the Moon. As the summer progresses we will update this article with pictures and updates.



Matt at Kennedy Space Center

A Summer at Kennedy Space Center (KSC)

UB-SEDS member Matt Cannella interned at NASA Kennedy Space Center for the summer of 2007. He completed two research projects on launch awareness and material selection for Ares I upper stage in the shuttle fluids division. His coding in the launch awareness software PCGoal2 is currently in use for launching of the Space Shuttle System.