Joe Whitehead

Combustion & Failure Analysis Engineer
BS Mechanical Engineering – 1997
New Mexico State University
MS Industrial Engineering – 2013
New Mexico State University

Joe is a mechanical engineer, focusing on combustion science, and joined the WHA Failure Analysis and Custom Testing Teams in 2016. He specializes in fuel-oxidizer combustion technologies including industrial fire/explosion accident investigations and reactive fuel-gas testing. He has developed the WHA reactive gases ignition test system and conducts testing to evaluate the stability of reactive gases including their minimum ignition energies. He also manages the WHA mechanical impact test systems to determine the reactivity of materials in high-pressure gaseous and liquid oxygen.

Joe came to WHA from the NASA White Sands Test Facility (NASA WSTF) where he served as a project leader in the Oxygen Systems group of WSTF’s Testing and Analysis Laboratory Department. His primary role at WSTF applied engineering analysis of three primary WSTF laboratory specialties (oxygen systems, hydrogen systems, and COPVs) to a unique prototype program that was a joint effort between NASA and DoD. Prior to NASA, Joe worked as a structural engineer for The Boeing Companies Space and Defense Division in St. Louis, Missouri. While at Boeing, he worked many projects involving the F-15 Strike Eagle fighter including extended design on the conformal weapons bay fuel section, retrofit activities on the F-15S conformal Fuel Tank, and several special projects for Boeing’s Phantom Works.