Born: United States of America
Primarily active in: United States of America


Roger Alwang, P&W/Vertol/Boeing Propulsion Engineer

John Roger Alwang died peacefully on Sept. 8. Known to all as Roger, or Poppy, he was born on July 6, 1933 in Jamaica (Queens), New York, to Anne and Walter Alwang. He was raised in Glendale, New York, attended high school at Brooklyn Tech, and college at Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, where he earned his bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering in 1955.

Alwang began his career as an aerospace engineer at Pratt & Whitney in East Hartford, Connecticut. He earned an MS in mechanical engineering at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. In 1972, Roger moved to Boeing Vertol, specializing in engine control optimization for tandem helicopter and tiltrotor products, retiring in 1995. During Alwang’s watch, controls progressed from hydromechanical, through analog electric for the XCH-62 Heavy Lift Helicopter (HLH), to digital (FADEC) controls on later CH-47 Chinooks and the V-22. He was an early participant in defining functional requirements, the validation/verification of flight critical software, and resolving associated conflicts among engine and air vehicle procurement specifications. Alwang was adept at inventing methodology for ground rig and/or flight test of  demonstrations of engine response and rotor/drive stability. He joined the Society in 1974 and was a co-author on several Forum and other papers over the years.

Alwang lived in Media, Pennsylvania, for 48 years. His obituary said, “He is remembered for his love of family, his wit, passion for debate, joy in travelling, the twinkle in his eyes, and his delight in solving problems — he was an engineer at heart.” He was also fondly remembered as the prime venue for eclectic “Vertol” parties and picnics over more than 40 years.

Source: "In Memoriam," Vertiflite November/December, 2020