Dr Brad Pietras

Associate Fellow; Senior Commercial Advisor to DARPA


Dr Brad Pietras is currently a Senior Commercial Advisor to the US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), as well as a board advisor to several companies from start-up to the FTSE 100. Prior to joining Rolls Royce, as the Technology Strategy Director and then Director of Business Development for AI and Machine Learning, he spent his twenty-year career at Lockheed Martin, reaching the position of Vice President of Technology. He has personally managed over $100M of R&D programmes, ranging from energy to quantum computing in the US, Europe, and the Middle East.

As a member of the Lockheed Martin Emerging Technology Fund board, he also provided expert advice on investments while serving on several corporate boards in the portfolio. Dr Pietras led the initiative that resulted in the founding of Applied Nanostructured Solutions LLC and the introduction of advanced carbon-based materials in multiple Lockheed Martin products, including the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter and the Juno spacecraft that successfully entered orbit around Jupiter in July of 2016. He also shares the patent for composites comprising of carbon nanotubes on fibre (US Patent 8,585,934).

In 2019, he received his Ph.D. in Computational Neuroscience from the University of Maryland’s School of Medicine. His thesis, entitled ‘Computational Modelling of Behaviour and Neural Mechanisms of Decision-Making Using Reinforcement Learning Theory’, was developed in collaboration with the Gatsby Computational Neuroscience Unit at University College London and explores the mathematical and neural foundations of value in decision-making and reinforcement learning.

Dr Pietras also holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Physics and a Master of Science degree in Neuroscience. He was a visiting scientist at the National Institutes of Health in the United States, a visiting researcher at University College London, and is currently a Visiting Professor at King’s College London, and an Honorary Principal Research Fellow at Imperial College London.

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