Welcome to Illinois Robotics in Space

A multidisciplinary student organization at UIUC

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IRIS is an organization that gives students the opportunity to design and create innovative robots for the NASA Robotic Mining Competition. With a hands on learning environment and self directed work, we produce some of the best engineers on campus!

The IRIS robot is a continuous work in progress. At the moment, we've completed our Critical Design Review and are about to begin building! As soon as it's complete we can start tests to ensure that it works as planned.

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We are also very involved with the community, reaching out to elementary and high schools to encourage STEM for the younger generation. This unique experience is rewarding for both our members and the students they mentor.

Sponsor? We'd love to hear from you!

Contact us at iris.uiuc@gmail.com or take a look at our Sponsors Packet for more details

Executive Board Members

Adana Pappas


President and Project Manager of IRIS. Senior in Aerospace Engineering. Robots and space are two of my favorite things, so naturally I joined IRIS. Please feel free to contact me anytime with questions, concerns or suggestions for IRIS!

Cassie Dickey

Vice President

I'm this year's vice president and safety officer. I am also part of the mechanical and systems teams. Let me know if you have any questions!

Christina Choi

Communications Director

Hello! I am the Communications Director for IRIS! I am responsible for handling external connections and other public relations. I am also a member of the Electrical team. My major is electrical engineering and I am currently a freshman. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to me!

Daniel Woodall


Deepa Kote


Hello! I'm a sophomore in Materials Science and Engineering, and I'm the secretary of IRIS this year!

Gil Shohet

External Representative

I'm the IRIS representative to EC and AEUAB this year! I've been active on the IRIS autonomous team for two years working on controlling the autonomous system.

Jake Dluhy


I'm the webmaster for IRIS this year. My goal is to make the website informative, interactive, and useful for all the awesome IRIS members. Feel free to get in touch if you have ideas or you just want to chat about web development!

Samyak Shah

Educational Outreach Director

I am a junior Aerospace Engineering student, minoring in Computer Science. I am the Educational Outreach Director, and I am on the Autonomous Team.

Team Leaders

Andy Myrna

Mechanical Team Lead

I'm a senior in Mechanical Engineering and am the Mechanical Lead! If you have any questions about the Mechanical Team or want to get involved, please feel free to contact me!

Dayne Rogers

Chief Engineer

I'm an Aerospace Engineering Graduate Student focusing in Systems Engineering, and I am the Chief Engineer for this year's design. In my role, I help the Project Manager with ensuring that the IRIS-V robot is successful from a technical standpoint, I work with the team Leads to make sure that engineering processes are used effectively, and I keep track of anything that's going on in the design team. If you have any questions about anything, I can help get you an answer!

Nathan Havens

Autonomous Team Lead

Hey! I'm Nathan Havens, a junior in Electrical Engineering and team lead for the autonomous subsystem. Whenever I'm not toiling away late at night doing homework, you'll find me playing sports or hanging out with friends. I'm super excited about this year's robot and look forward to working with everyone to create a winning design!

Peter Grega

Systems Engineering Lead

I'm the Systems Team Lead this year! I'll be working with your Team Leads to ensure subsystem interfaces will work correctly, and I'll also be ensuring that all NASA rules are met. I'm a senior in Aerospace Engineering, and this is my second year doing IRIS.

Raj Vinjamuri

Electrical Team Lead

I lead the Electrical Team, and I am eager to work alongside you to develop robust electrical systems and help you gain experience. An EE Senior with industry experience--I'm excited to work along side you in making IRIS-V the best robot yet!

Faculty Advisors


Seth Hutchinson

Electrical and Autonomous Advisor

Seth is helping with the autonomous and electrical design of the robot. His extensive work with robotics is an invaluable asset to the IRIS team.

Brian Woodard

Manufacturing and Design Advisor

Brian helps maintain IRIS' relationship with the campus machine shop, and aids in teaching design and manufacturing skills to students.