Masataka Okutsu, Ph.D.

Masataka Okutsu
Assistant Professor, Engineering
Program Coordinator, Engineering
Rydal, 217
Penn State Abington
1600 Woodland Rd.
Abington, PA 19001

Biographical Sketch

Dr. Masataka (“Masa”) Okutsu conducts research in various areas of aerospace engineering. Examples of ongoing projects (in 2022) include evaluation of commercial-grade electronics for small satellite applications and fabrication and testing of sulfur concrete made from Martian regolith simulant. Dr. Okutsu’s doctoral research area was astrodynamics and space mission design especially those involving design of multiple-gravity assist trajectories. In the past, he was also involved in a project to teach an aerospace design course in multi-user 3D virtual environments. 

Prior to joining Penn State Abington, Dr. Okutsu was a Clinical Assistant Professor at The Catholic University of America (Washington, DC). He received his Ph.D. in aeronautical and astronautical engineering from Purdue University (West Lafayette, IN).  

Courses Taught 

  • Penn State University (at Abington and Great Valley campuses): Thermodynamics (ME300); Introduction to Thermal Science (ME201); Dynamics (EMCH212); Cornerstone Engineering Design (EDSGN100). 
  • The Catholic University of America: Aerospace Design (ME554); Introduction to Flight Dynamics (ME552); Senior Capstone Design/Project (ME441/442); Differential Equations (ENGR222); Introduction to Computer Programming with MATLAB (CSC113). 
  • Purdue University: Introduction to Aerospace Design (AAE251)


Representative Publications

Barkatt, A. and Okutsu, M., (2022). “Obtaining Elemental Sulfur for Martian Sulfur Concrete.” Journal of Chemical Research. DOI: 10.1177/17475198221080729. 

Li, L., Lay, K., and Okutsu, M., (2021). “Preliminary Thermal Validation Tests for Education-Class CubeSats and Weather-Balloon Payloads.” Journal of Small Satellites, Vol. 10, No. 01, pp. 983–993. 

Franqui, A., Seufert, S. and Okutsu, M., (2019). Seismic Investigation of Icy Crust Covering Subsurface Oceans of Europa and Ganymede: Preliminary Assessment of Hypothetical Experiment Using Impactor. Acta Astronautica, pp. 170-178. 

Okutsu, M., Landau, D. F., Rogers, B. A., Longuski, J. M., “Low-Thrust Roundtrip Trajectories to Mars with One-Synodic-Period Repeat Time,” Acta Astronautica, Vol. 110, 2015, pp. 191-205. doi: 10.1016/j.actaastro.2015.01.006 

Okutsu, M., Yam, C. H., Longuski, J. M., and Strange, N. J., “Cassini Saturn-Escape Trajectories to Jupiter, Uranus, and Neptune,” Acta Astronautica, Vol. 79, 2012, pp. 157-167. doi: 10.1016/j.actaastro.2012.04.034 

Okutsu, M., DeLaurentis, D. A., Brophy, S. P., and Lambert, J. B., “Teaching Aerospace Engineering Design Course via Virtual World: Comparative Assessment of Learning Outcomes,” Computers and Education, Vol. 60, 2013, pp. 288-298. doi: 10.1016/j.compedu.2012.07.012