Bradford A. Neal is Chief Engineer at NASA’s Dryden Flight Research Center, Edwards, Calif. He provides independent technical guidance and oversight to Dryden flight projects to ensure conformance with center and agency standards, policies, and processes.
In addition, as chair of the Airworthiness and Flight Safety Review Board, he is responsible for determining and providing the appropriate level of independent technical review for each project prior to flight.
Neal served as deputy chief engineer from 2008 until being named acting chief engineer in November 2011. He received the official appointment in June 2012.
From 1987 to 2008, Neal was an operations engineer at NASA Dryden, specializing in the integration, test and operations of flight research vehicles and experiments. Among projects to which he was assigned were the X-31 Enhanced Fighter Maneuverability Demonstrator, Hyper-X / X-43A hypersonic research vehicle, the Stratospheric Observatory For Infrared Astronomy and the Linear Aerospike SR-71 experiment. He also was an engineer on projects with the F-104, Advanced Fighter Technology Integration F-16 and F-16XL laminar flow research aircraft and has served as mission controller for flight activities.
Neal earned a Bachelor of Science in aeronautical and astronautical engineering in 1986 and a Master of Science in aeronautics and astronautics in 1996, both from Purdue University, West Lafayette, Ind. He began his career at Dryden as a cooperative education student in 1982, and joined the full-time engineeringstaff following completion of his undergraduate studies.
Neal is co-author of three technical papers and a recipient of the NASA Exceptional Service Medal.