Dr. Mark Happel

Systems Engineering

Personal Bio

Dr. Mark D. Happel is a Senior Information Scientist in the Air and Missile Defense Sector (AMDS) of the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (JHU/APL), where he performs signal processing and software engineering research and development projects.  His recent projects have focused on statistical pattern recognition, time series analyses, and the development of image processing simulation systems.  In addition, he has designed and conducted cognitive neuro-science experiments using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI).  

He is currently an instructor in the JHU Engineering for Professionals (EP) Program. Prior to this, he held an appointment as an Associate Professorial Lecturer in Computer Science at the George Washington University, where he taught both graduate-level and undergraduate-level Computer Science courses for ten years.  

Prior to coming to APL, Dr. Happel performed science and technology policy research at the RAND Corporation and both neuroscience and artificial intelligence research at the MITRE Corporation.  He led a software engineering team that developed real-time, safety-critical, Ada-based jet engine control software for the USAF’s YF-22 and YF-23 fighter aircraft prototypes at GE Aircraft Engines, and performed digital hardware design and test at Northern Telecom, Inc.  His first professional experience was as a nuclear-trained submarine officer in the US Navy, serving as the Reactor Controls Officer, Sonar Officer, and Weapons Officer onboard USS PHOENIX (SSN702).

Dr. Happel earned a B.S.E.E. degree in Electrical Engineering from the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland; an M.S.E. degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Central Florida in Orlando, Florida; and a D.Sc. degree in Computer Science from the George Washington University in Washington, DC. 

Education History

  • B.S.E.E. Electrical Engineering, United States Naval Academy
  • M.S.E. Electrical Engineering, University of Central Florida
  • D.Sc. Computer Science, The George Washington University

Work Experience

Senior Professional Staff, JHU Applied Physics Laboratory


Happel, M.D., Spitaletta, J.A., Pohlmeyer, E.A., Hwang, G.M., Greenberg, A.M., Scholl, C.A., & Wolmetz, M., 2017. “National security and the assessment of individual credibility: Current challenges, future opportunities.” Johns Hopkins APL Technical Digest, 33(4), 303-313.

Haufler, A.J., Firpi, A., Goforth, M., Happel, M., Lee, A., Miller, J., Osorno, M., Rager, D., Rollend, D., Spitaletta, J., & Vogelstein, R.J., 2014. “A multi-modal examination of the biophysical signals of interpersonal trust in an interactive, computer-based gaming environment.” Washington DC: Society for Neuroscience (458.02/SS28).

Silberglitt, Richard, Philip S. Antón, Steven Berner, Paul DeLuca, Mark Happel, David R. Howell, Eric Landree, David S. Ortiz, Tim Webb, Shara Williams, 2010. Analyzing Emerging Technologies for Technology Security Concerns. Santa Monica, Calif.: RAND Corporation, DB-586-OSD. Not releasable to the general public.

Bonomo, James, Philip S. Antón, Mark Happel, Dick Hoffmann, Richard Mesic, Charles Nemfakos, Marc Viola, 2010. Planning for an Operational Assessment of Saber Focus (U). Santa Monica, Calif.: RAND Corporation, PM(L)-3157-NAVY. Not releasable to the general public.

Bonomo, J., Mesic, R., Matthews, V., Anton, P. S., Nemfakos, C., & Happel, M. D., 2008. Project SABER FOCUS: A Development Plan for Enhancing the Navy's Irregular Warfare Capability. Santa Monica, CA: The RAND Corporation. Not releasable to the general public.

Happel, M. D., Webb, K. W., Sollinger, J., & Bradley, M., 2007. External Assessment of the Directorate of Intelligence Product Evaluation Methodology. Santa Monica, CA: The RAND Corporation. Not releasable to the general public.

Heckman, K. E., & Happel, M. D., 2006. “Mechanical Detection of Deception: A Short Review” in Educing information: Interrogation: Science and art—foundations for the future, ed. by Swenson, R.. Washington, DC: National Defense Intelligence College Press, 63-94.

Happel, M. D., 2005. “Neuroscience and the Detection of Deception”, Review of Policy Research, 22(5), 667-685.

Happel, M., Oertel, C., & Smith, D. B., 2005. “Geospatial Intelligence and the Neuroscience of Human Vision” in Optics and Photonics in Global Homeland Security, ed. by Saito, T. T., Proceedings of the SPIE Vol 5781. Bellingham, WA: SPIE, 98-108.

Happel, M., and Bock, P., 2001. "Overriding the Experts: A Fusion Method for Combining Marginal Classifiers", International Journal on Artificial Intelligence Tools, 10(1&2), 157-179.

Happel, M., and Bock, P., 2000. "Analysis of a Fusion Method for Combining Marginal Classifiers" in Multiple Classifier Systems, ed. by Kittler, J., and Roli, F., Berlin: Springer-Verlag, 137-146.

Happel, M., and Bock, P., 2000. "Overriding the Experts: A Stacking Method for Combining Marginal Classifiers" in Proceedings of the Thirteenth International Florida Artificial Intelligence Research Society Conference (FLAIRS-2000), ed. by Etheredge, J., and Manaris, B., AAAI Press, Menlo Park, CA, 66-70.

Happel, M., and Bock, P., 1996. “The Classification of Symbolic Concepts Using The ALISA Concept Module” in Proceedings of the Ninth International Symposium on Artificial Intelligence (ISAI-96), ed. by Soto, R., Sanchez, J., Campbell, M., and Cantu, F., IEEE Press, Piscataway, NJ, 170-179.

Happel, M., Pav, M., Jimenez, I., and Bock, P., 1995. "The Impact of Mode Filtering Sparse Images on the Reclassification Performance of the ALISA Geometry Module" in Architectures for Semiotic Modeling and Situation Analysis in Large Complex Systems: Proceeding of the 1995 ISIC Workshop, ed. by Albus, J., Meystel, A., Pospelov, D., and Reader, T., AdRem, Inc., Bala Cynwyd, PA., 314-321.

Happel, M., 1989. “The Use of Expert Systems in In-Circuit Testing” in ATE and Instrumentation (East) Proceedings, Boston, MA.

Happel, M., and B. Petrasko, 1988. “Ada Tools for the Description and Simulation of Digital Signal Processing Systems” in Proceedings of the Sixth National Conference on Ada Technology, U.S. Department of Commerce, Springfield, VA., 182-190.

Honors and Awards

  • Navy Achievement Medal (1985)

Professional Organizations

Society for Neuroscience