Megan Harrington
Megan Harrington
Test Facilities Design Engineer, Blue Origin
WA

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Close Up
  • What I Do

    I support the design of test stands and launchpad systems for reusable space vehicles.

  • Why Engineering?

    I chose engineering because (a) it's challenging, (b) I like understanding how things work, and (c) am fascinated by the idea of humans exploring space.

  • School Days

    BS Mechanical Engineering from University of Nevada Reno
    MS in Engineering Science from the University of Queensland

  • My Day At Work

    Typical activities include design and analysis (i.e., fluids, thermo, heat transfer), conducting trade studies, assessing safety and hazardous operations, interfacing with customers and contractors, and project management.

  • Best Part

    Using well-understood scientific theories, laws and data and applying them to real-world problems to achieve results.

    Or more simply: I like building things, big explosions (controlled), and making things fly.

  • Proud Moments

    The big picture results: knowing the work our teams are accomplishing together will help expand human presence beyond Earth.

  • Challenges

    Getting over the fear of not knowing enough.

  • My Family

    My family are my role models and I wouldn't be here without them.

  • Dreams and Goals

    Build for space.
    Go to space.
    Work in space.

  • Inspiration

    My parents. They encouraged my brother and I to pursue our dreams and passions, and emphasized that we could be anything we wanted to be when we grew up. Having this freedom to dream up any future for ourselves provided the foundation to discover our passions.

  • Want to be an Engineer?

    Find what you're passionate about; it fuels you forward in the long run.

  • Hobbies

    I like to be outdoors and exploring as much as I can. Hobbies include running, hiking, swimming, snowboarding, paddle boarding, kayaking, rock hounding, stargazing, photography, painting, reading and learning something new. I have too many favorite books.

  • Additional Thoughts

    "Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

Biography
I'm a mechanical engineer with a focus in aerospace. I support the design of test stands and launch systems for reusable space vehicles and liquid propellant rocket engines at Blue Origin. In grad school, I studied scramjet combustion, CFD, and piston-driven shock tunnels with the Centre for Hypersonics at the University of Queensland. I worked at NASA Stennis Space Center supporting the hotfire test programs, including the RS-25 campaign for NASA's Space Launch System (SLS) and prep for SLS core stage testing. Model rockets, fireworks, and stargazing in the rural deserts are where I started. Feel free to ask me anything.
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Education
Master of Engineering Science (focus in Aerospace); Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering, Minor in Mathematics
Volunteer Opportunities
  • I am willing to be contacted by educators for possible speaking engagements in schools or in after school programs or summer camps.
  • I am willing to serve as science fair judge or other temporary volunteer at a local school.
Latest Questions
  • Megan Harrington, Blue Origin
    Answered Saturday, January 6, 2018 at 4:10 PM
    Hi Tatyana,
    
    There is no age limit to furthering education. I'm similarly interested in going back to school and am in my 30's. As long as you've got the drive to pursue it, there's no limit! I hope you consider pursuing the degree...and if you do it, ...
    Read More
  • Tosin, Lagos

    Added Saturday, January 24, 2015 at 7:00 PM

    I want to become an aeronautical engineer but my mom is advising me to study mechanical engineering so as to keep my options open. So now I am wondering, if I study mechanical engineering can I still become an aeronautical engineer?
    Answers 1
    Megan Harrington, Blue Origin
    Answered Saturday, January 24, 2015 at 7:00 PM
    Hi Tosin!
    
    First off, that's great to hear you're going for engineering! 
    
    Good news: you can still work in aerospace as a mechanical engineer. That's what I did. You can also go to grad school for aeronautical engineering and have both engineering ...
    Read More
  • Kelly, Cape Town asked Megan Harrington, Blue Origin

    Added Friday, April 25, 2014 at 6:59 AM

    Hi there! I'm fascinated with your bio and career. You sound incredible and the work you do is amazing. I'm 26 and looking to go back to university to do a degree in mechanical engineering. I'm spending the next couple of years redoing high school maths and science in preparation. I'm a South African and I want to work with rockets and propulsion systems. I know aerospace and defence industries outside of SA are largely off the cards because I'm not a citizen of the USA, for example. However, ...
    Related to Choosing a Degree, Nuclear, Preparation for College, Special fields and Interdisciplinary
    Answers 1
    Megan Harrington, Blue Origin
    Answered Friday, April 25, 2014 at 6:59 AM
    Hi Kelly!
    
    First off, high five for taking the first steps towards achieving your goal. Secondly, and to answer your question, heck no, your career plan is not ludicrous! That's not to say it won't be challenging, but that's a true statement for anyone ...
    Read More
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