Dr. Paulo Iscold obtained his BA, MS, and PhD at the Federal University of Minas Gerais, in Brazil. His undergraduate was in Mechanical Engineering with Aeronautical Emphasis. He had a Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering, developing a tridimensional panel code, and a doctorate also in Mechanical Engineering, developing flight path optimization techniques for parametric trajectories.

Since his early days studying aeronautical engineering, Dr. Iscold was mentored by Prof. Claudio Barros – a notorious airplane design professor in Brazil – and Mr. Joseph Kovacs – the designer of the renown EMBRAER Tucano, among others airplanes. For his undergraduate capstone paper, under the supervision of Prof. Barros, Dr Iscold designed his first airplane: the CEA-308, which he built during his Master Program. This airplane made its debut flight in Dec. 2001.

During Dr. Iscold’s doctorate program, he developed his second airplane, already working with undergraduate students: the CEA-309 Mehari, an unlimited aerobatic airplane, that flew for the first time in 2009.

In 2005, Dr. Iscold joined the Center for Aeronautics Studies of the Federal University of Minas Gerais, stepping into the position of his previous mentor. As professor of airplane design, flight test, and applied aerodynamics, Dr. Iscold build a subsonic wind tunnel laboratory, modernize the airplane fabrication laboratory and build a hangar to accommodate the university aeronautical activities. He also developed a third airplane with his students: the CEA-311 Anequim.

His first airplane, the CEA-308 set four world records with the International Federation of Aeronautics (FAI – category C1a0) in 2010. The CEA-311 Anequim set five world records (FAI C1a) in 2015. The CEA309 Mehari was the Brazilian Aerobatic Champion in 2016 and is still competing and performing air shows in Brazil.

Since 2008, Dr. Iscold and his students have also participated in the Red Bull Air Race Championship, doing flight path optimization, aerodynamic modification, and flight simulation. In 2015, Dr Iscold was World Champion working for the British Team Bonhomme, and he currently works for the American Team Chambliss. Solutions and procedures developed by Dr. Iscold became the standard to be beat in this competition.

Dr. Iscold has served as a consultant for many companies around the world, including EMBRAER, BOEING, NOVAER, and others.

Dr. Iscold is passionate for airplanes and flight, and during his free time now he is building, already surrounded by students, the Project Nixus, a fly by wire high performance sailplane wing.

At Cal Poly Dr. Iscold is looking forward to keep developing new airplane prototypes, pushing the limits of aviation, but also providing to his students unique and exciting opportunities to learn by doing airplanes

Research Interests

  • Airplane Design
  • Applied Aerodynamics
  • Flight Dynamics
  • Flight Test

Office Hours for Winter 2024

  • Week 8
    • T: 4:00-5:00pm at the Airport
    • W: 9:00-12:00pm
    • R: 4:00-5:00pm at the Airport
  • Week 9
    • M: 9:00-12:00pm
    • W: 10:00-12:00pm
  • Week 10
    • M: 9:00-12:00pm
    • F: 10:00-12:00pm