Born in Toronto, Ontario, Etkin is a graduate of the University of Toronto and was Dean of the Faculty of Applied Science and Engineering at the university in the 1970s. He is currently a Professor Emeritus at the University of Toronto Institute for Aerospace Studies.
Bernard was a member of the team at the University of Toronto Institute for Aerospace Studies, which had been contracted to build the lunar-landing module for Apollo 13. When the service modulde became crippled, they performed initial calculations needed for the astronauts safe return.
Etkin's treatment of six degree of freedom (6-DoF) theory in "Dynamics of Atmospheric Flight" was unusual in being sufficiently general that it touched upon hypersonic flight and was usable in simulating Atmospheric reentry.
In 1970, he was made a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada. In 1980 Etkin received the Thomas W. Eadie Medal from the Royal Society of Canada. He was named to the Order of Canada as a Member in 2003 for his contributions to the aerospace industry in Canada.
- Etkin, Bernard (1972). Dynamics of Atmospheric Flight. New York: John Wiley & Sons, Inc. ISBN 0-471-24620-4.
- "Thomas W. Eadie Medal". The Royal Society of Canada. Retrieved 27 September 2011.
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