Home | Photography | Daily Antarctic Photo | Blog


My name is Nathan Precup. I am a scrappy aerospace engineer who gets things done. Explore this web page to learn a little more about me and the things I work on!


It has already been two years since I quit my job as a flight test engineer to do something completely different. I moved to the midwest to work on the BICEP Array microwave telescope. Then I deployed to the South Pole in November 2019 to install the telescope with a great team of research scientists. I stayed behind for the cold, dark Antarctic winter to run the telescope. Then COVID-19 hit, and still I stayed for another summer to help train my replacement and fix a problem with the telescope. It has been over 14 months of continuous time "on ice" as we say down here. Soon, I'm returning home to a very different world than I left behind, and hopefully new adventures.

Before this trip to the bottom of the world in search of evidence of inflation in the cosmic microwave background, I worked for two years as a flight test engineer at Quicksilver Aerospace, alongside some of the most outstanding engineers I've ever had the pleasure of working with. Back then I was responsible for the company's software and data system development, at least when I wasn't installing instrumentation and participating in flight tests. My roots in test engineering goes back to my days as Operations Manager at the University of Washington Aeronautical Laboratory (UWAL), where they provide wind tunnel testing services for industry and academic research. In all, as a student and professional engineer, I spent nearly 9 formative years at UWAL.


It is not hard to get me excited about the world around me, there is inspiration around every corner. Before deployment to Antarctica, I came within a few hours of obtaining my Private Pilot Certificate. Finishing that is high on my priorities list when I return. The natural world is astounding, and I try to capture that with night sky time lapse photography. Back home in the Pacific Northwest you might find me hiking or climbing, scuba diving or sailing.

I believe that one should always be expanding their horizons. It's a big world out there. Let's go explore it.


I graduated from the University of Washington with a BS in Aeronautics & Astronautics in 2011 and a MS in Aeronautics & Astronautics in 2018. I had the opportunity as an undergraduate to work part time at a wind tunnel for over 3 years, spend a summer gaining hands on research experience working in a plasma thruster lab, and study aeronautics for several months in France.