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Colonel Brian J. Neff

Vice Dean for Academics & Permanent Professor


Official photo of Colonel Brian Neff
Contact Information

(719) 333-2958



Colonel Brian Neff is the Vice Dean for Academics at the U.S. Air Force Academy. He manages the institutions efforts towards implementation and assessment of the nine institutional outcomes. Additionally, he manages curricular policy for 31 academic majors and 17 minors. As part of his dual role as the permanent professor for Electrical and Computer Engineering, Colonel Neff directs an active research program including the Academy Center for Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) Research and maintains state of the art lab and test facilities.

Colonel Neff entered the Air Force in 1999 through Air Force ROTC at the University of Pittsburgh. He has deployed in support of Iraqi Freedom, where he was the Detachment Commander for the Joint Air Battle Staff. Colonel Neff was previously a permanent party faculty member at the USAF Test Pilot School and continues to serve as adjunct faculty, where he leads the test community in modernizing Electro-Optic and Electronic Warfare flight test techniques. Prior to his current position, Colonel Neff was a squadron commander for the 746th Test Squadron, where he led the developmental test efforts for DoD global positioning system upgrades.

Colonel Neff is an accomplished flight test engineer with 573 military flight hours in 35 unique aircraft types. Additionally, he has 292 combat flight hours in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.


Air War College, by correspondence (2016)

Doctor of Philosophy, Electrical Engineering, Air Force Institute of Technology, Wright Patterson AFB, Ohio (2013)

Master of Arts, Military Operational Art and Science, Air Command and Staff College (2010)

Master of Science, Flight Test Engineering, USAF Test Pilot School, Edwards AFB, California (2007)

Master of Science, Electrical Engineering, Polytechnic University of NYU, Brooklyn, New York (2006)

Squadron Officer School, in residence, Top Third Graduate (2004)

Bachelor of Science Degree, Electrical Engineering, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (1999)

Professional Experience

Vice Dean for Academics, United States Air Force Academy, Colorado 2022-Present

Head, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado (2018-2022)

746th Test Squadron Commander (CC), Holloman AFB, New Mexico (2016-2018)

96th Test Group Deputy CC, Holloman AFB, New Mexico (2015-2016)

USAF TPS Director of Education, Edwards AFB, California (2014-2015)

USAF TPS Deputy Director of Education, Edwards AFB, California (2013-2014)

AFIT PhD Student, WPAFB, Ohio (2010-2013)

419th Flight Test Squadron Asst Ops Officer, Edwards AFB, California (2009-2010)

Joint Airborne Battle Staff Detachment CC, Balad Air Base, Iraq (2009)

419th Flight Test Squadron Ops Engr Flt CC, Edwards AFB, California (2008-2009)

419th Flight Test Squadron Chf Flt Test Engr, Edwards AFB, California (2007-2008)

USAF TPS Student, Edwards AFB, California (2007)

Information Ops Flight Commander (2006)

Information Ops Test Director (2004-2006)

Intelligence Squadron Technical Director (2002-2004)

National Air Intelligence Center Signals Analyst, Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio (1999-2002)

Honors & Awards

Meritorious Service Medal with two oak leaf clusters

Air Medal

Air Force Commendation Medal

Army Commendation Medal

Air Force Recognition Ribbon

Iraq Campaign Medal

USAF Outstanding Scientist and Engineering Educator (2015)

Three time USAF Test Pilot School Academic Instructor of the Year (Classes 15A, 14A, 13B)

Distinguished Graduate – USAF Test Pilot School

R.L. Jones Award Recipient – USAF Test Pilot School as #1 of 11 Flt Test Engr / Nav

National Air Intelligence Center Award for Tech Merit (2000)

Research and Scholarly Interests


Flight Test Techniques

3-D Laser RADAR

Computer Vision

Electronic Warfare


Refereed Journal Publications

Brian J. Neff, Quentin D. Macmanus, Stephen C. Cain and Richard K. Martin, “Image deblurring and near-real-time atmospheric seeing estimation through the employment of convergence of variance,” Journal of Applied Remote Sensing 7(1), 2013.

Brian J. Neff and Stephen C. Cain, “Multiple surface discrimination in three-dimensional FLASH laser radar while minimizing the effects of diffraction” Optical Engineering 51(5), 2012.

Conference Presentations

Neff, B.J., Hardgrove, R., Bennett, M.L., Liebmann, C.J., Mensen, J.M., Lippert, M.T., Santroch, E.J., “HAVE LIGHT – An evaluation of electro-optic system imaging performance test techniques and C-12J utility as an electro optics airborne test bed,” 47th Annual International Symposium of the Society of Flight Test Engineers pp. 66-80, 2016

Neff, B.J., Fuka, J.A., Burwell, A.C., Gray, S.W., Hubbard, M.J., Schenkel, J.W., “Remote sensing solution using 3-D flash LADAR for automated control of aircraft,” Proceedings of SPIE – The International Society for Optical Engineering 9617, 2015.

Neff, B.J., Cain, S.C., “Image restoration technique for motion-compensated frame averaged data collected by 3D FLASH LADAR imaging system,” Proceedings of SPIE – The International Society for Optical Engineering 8520, 2012.

Neff, B.J., Cain, S.C., Martin, R.K., “Discrimination of multiple ranges per pixel in 3D FLASH LADAR while minimizing the effects of diffraction,” Proceedings of SPIE – The International Society for Optical Engineering 8165, 2011.

Neff, B.J., Vijayagopal, R., Latifi, S., “Testing the reliability of a hypercube and folded hypercube in the presence of random and dynamic faults,” Proceedings of the International Conference on Parallel and Distributed Processing Techniques and Applications 3, pp. 1267-1271, 2003