Dr. Robert D.M. Tachau

Proliferation Detection R&D, Department 5753

P.O. Box 5800 MS 0968, Albuquerque, New Mexico 87185-0968


(505) 845-7157

Sandia National Labs


Robert (Rob) Tachau is deputy to the Program Manager for the portfolio of R&D projects Sandia executes for the National Nuclear Security Administration’s Office of Proliferation Detection within the NNSA Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation R&D organization.

After completing his BS in Civil Engineering at New Mexico State University, Rob was commissioned in the Air Force and spent six years as the pilot of the RF-4C Phantom II tactical reconnaissance aircraft. After leaving the military, he returned to NMSU to complete his Master’s Degree in Civil Engineering.

Upon graduation, Rob joined the Technical Staff at Sandia’s Rocket Sled Test Facilities where he was responsible for the design, development and execution of high-velocity, reverse ballistic, rocket sled tests. Additionally, Rob was a Test Director for the Sandia F-4 Aircraft Impact Test. In pursuit of his research interests in rocket sled engineering, Rob was selected for Sandia’s Doctoral Study Program and entered the Graduate Engineering School of the University of Texas at Austin. His dissertation, “An Investigation of Gouge Initiation in HighVelocity Sliding Contact,” is a significant contribution to the rail gouging phenomena body-ofknowledge. After completing his PhD in Engineering Mechanics, Rob became the Technical Supervisor of Sandia’s Rocket and Dynamic Test Team. Later, after an assignment as a Systems Analyst in the Arms Control Studies Department, Rob was promoted to Manager of the Explosives Applications Department, followed by an assignment as Manager of the Thermal, Fluid, and Aero Experimental Sciences Department. Rob joined the Management Team in Sandia’s Monitoring Systems and Technology Center in April 2007.

Rob is a Sandia Corporate Recruiter for Aerospace Engineering and Engineering Mechanics at the University of Texas at Austin. He is a registered Professional Engineer in the State of New Mexico, a Member of the American Society of Civil Engineers, and the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics