Home > By Barbara Harris-Para

By Barbara Harris-Para

1. Tech Center participates in 2006 Atlantic City Air Show

By Mike Greco and Janet Kinsell

On August 23, the Technical Center participated in the 2006 Atlantic City Air Show.

With an estimated attendance of more than 600,000 fans, the show opened with a rendition of the Star Spangled Banner sung by 13 year-old Galloway resident, Morgan Kirner. The beach crowd rose to their feet and boardwalk strollers stopped on a dime as Morgan’s impressive voice serenaded U.S. Army Corporal Josh Coleman, who parachuted in with the American Flag flowing from his back. “How could anyone NOT be proud to be an American,” exclaimed Marcus Forner from Philadelphia. After a thunderous applause, radio personality Pinky Kravitz announced additional U.S. Army sky jumpers and the first of several flyby aircraft, a USAF KC-135 and F-16 provided by our own Air National Guard 177th Fighter Wing.

The Tech Center’s Flight Program operated two aircraft at the airshow - the Boeing 727 and Bombardier Global 5000 large business jet. John Wiley, Managing Director of the Integrated Engineering Services Group, proudly took the microphone stating, “The Technical Center features a fleet of 7 test aircraft. These “flying laboratories” support the FAA’s research and development flight program. Today you are viewing the Boeing 727, which will soon be retired after over 35 years of service AND its replacement, the advanced Global 5000 large business jet, the “star” of the Center’s fleet. The pilots flying the Boeing 727 are John Geyser, Dan Dellmyer, and flight engineer John Tatham. Lorry Faber and Mark Ehrhart are flying the Global 5000.”

The Tech Center also had an information booth at the air show. Volunteers distributed extensive material about the Tech Center to viewers, who showed a lot of interest in the work of the FAA.

Blue Angels visit the Tech Center

Prior to the event, the Tech Center provided critical support to the world famous U.S. Navy Blue Angels precision flying team in the FAA aircraft hangar and in the ramp area. Center personnel from operations and the flight program provided ramp parking, ground control traffic, a pilot briefing room, communications and operational support for the Blue Angel team, as well as several other aircraft participating in the show.

The Blue Angels team involved consisted of 65 airmen, seven F-18 Hornet fighters and “Fat Albert,” a C-130 support and demonstration airplane. Center employees found the Blue Angels to be professional, courteous, and genuinely appreciative of the support provided. This effort remains a great example of cooperation and professionalism amongst government agencies while supporting an aviation promotional event for the public.

The Blue Angels showed appreciation to Center employees and contractors by handing out numerous posters, stickers and brochures to the many people who made their way over to wave to the team as they departed the FAA ramp. Several media flights also launched from our ramp, including TV’s Anne Marie Green (Channel 3) and Matt O'Donnell (Channel 6), plus actor James Franco, who stars in the upcoming aviation movie "Flyboy’s.”� Each took flights in the Blue Angels #7 aircraft; a 2-person plane with built in audio and video equipment that provides 3 different views and an instant DVD of the flight to each passenger upon completion of their flight.

Congratulations to all who were involved in producing and supporting this wonderful event.

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2. Fire Safety Aboard Aircraft

By Barbara Harris-Para

Editor’s Note: A little background on the Tech Center’s fire safety group: There are 24 people that do extensive testing, research and development in six devoted facilities and three fully operational aircraft (Boeing 747, 737 and 727). The group is the premier laboratory in the world for aircraft fire safety issues. They can respond quickly to practically any aircraft fire safety concern because of their expertise and in-house testing capabilities. As a unique example, Gus Sarkos spoke of a past situation that required immediate attention during the buildup of armaments and supplies during Desert Shield.� Stripped of their seats, civilian airliners were being loaded with weapons and supplies atop plywood sheathing and flown to the Middle East. The Associate Administrator for Regulation and Certification contacted Gus for help after concerns were raised regarding the flammability of the plywood. On the same day as the request, when the staff went out for lunch they purchased treated and non-treated plywood sheets. A series of tests were conducted in the afternoon that demonstrated clearly that the use of treated plywood would provide the necessary safety protection. The results were communicated to AVR-1 who passed on the information to the appropriate authorities, allowing the buildup to continue unimpeded with the knowledge that the fire safety risks were minimal. In addition to a quick note to the Administrator complementing the responsiveness of the fire safety crew, those involved were given a special award for their “outstanding contribution to the FAA mission in support of Operation Desert Shield/Storm”.

Have you ever taken notice of how many rows there are between you and the emergency exits on an aircraft, or listened carefully to the flight attendants’ safety briefing? After speaking with Gus Sarkos, Manager of the William J. Hughes Technical Center’s Fire Safety Branch, and Engineer Steve Summer, I will be listening to them, as well as spreading the word about onboard aircraft fire safety.

Steve Summer has recently completed research here at the Center on the fire safety implications of pre-packaged self–heating meals (MREs) designed for military use. They have been marketed right here in NJ, saying they are safe for use in camping, homes, on the road and possibly in aircraft, but Steve sees a different scenario through tests performed in his laboratory.

Steve’s research began with the basic contents of the packaged meal. The food was fine, but what was the means to accelerate the heating process? Well, it was a combination of saltwater and a magnesium-iron mixture. The chemical reaction between the two generated heat that reached temperatures of up to 215 degrees Fahrenheit, as well as hydrogen gas as an unwelcome by-product. We all remember the Hindenburg, the hydrogen-filled German lighter-than-air ship that came to its demise in Lakehurst, NJ during a very charged atmosphere of thunderstorms with lightning. The known flammability hazards of hydrogen, punctuated by the Hindenburg tragedy, made Steve take notice.

First, he began with one meal and a continuous ignition source. Then he added a few more meals in their test tank. When they ignited there was at least 8 times the amount of hydrogen at that point then when he began.

Steve said that one of the factors he considered is that water accelerates the process. That rules out water for fighting a fire that involves these meals, and if the magnesium starts burning there may be very little that can be done to douse the flames. He pointed out that a major fire occurred on a pallet loaded with MREs, fortunately, before being loaded aboard a navy ship. It is suspected that the elevated hydrogen levels within the packages contributed to the fire intensity.

I asked both Steve and Gus how they determine what they are going to test. Their work is entirely driven by their customer, the Associate Administrator for Aviation Safety, whose organization is basically responsible for aircraft certification and operational safety. An involved prioritization process identifies those customer requirements that will be addressed within the available budget constraints, not just for fire safety, but also for the entire Aircraft Safety R&D program. Some of the R&D activities are cooperative ventures with aircraft manufacturers such as Boeing or Airbus, foreign airworthiness authorities, NASA, other government agencies, etc. Over the past 28 years, the Fire Safety Branch has also supported the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigation of large transport aircraft fires, which is coordinated by the FAA’s Office of Accident Investigation.

Gus mentioned that much of the premier testing information they produce can be found on their website, at www.fire.tc.faa.gov. The website contains the proceedings of two international working groups, chaired and administered by the Fire Safety Branch, each of which meet three times a year, to provide a forum for cooperation and coordination on fire safety R&D. Planning is also underway on a major triennial international conference on cabin safety, which usually draws 400-500 attendees, which will be held in Atlantic City in the fall of 2007.

Gus feels that the Tech Center has the world’s leading experts on aircraft fire safety. In addition, a well-known professor from the University of Maryland will be doing his sabbatical leave here early next year. He will collaborate with the fire safety folks to study the flammability of epoxy/graphite composites, of the type that will be used for the fuselage and wing structure in the new Boeing 787 aircraft. He will be working side-by-side with folks like Steve, Dick Hill, and Dr. Rich Lyon, just to name a few.

Another important study that was recently completed here at the Tech Center was examining methodologies to protect aircraft from accidental fuel tank explosions using inert gases. Steve was responsible for studying the flammability of fuel tanks and, in particular, determining the concentration of oxygen that would prevent an explosion. Gus mentioned that because Steve’s work had such a critical effect on the design of the inerting system developed here, a well-known professor from Cal Tech was tasked by Boeing with validating his findings. In the end, his work withstood the scrutiny of the professor. Boeing built their own inerting system essentially using the FAA design, and the first system was installed in a Boeing airplane last year.

Gus elaborated on future activities to improve aircraft fire safety. The Fire Safety Branch will continue to work on hidden in-flight fires by developing tougher flammability standards for all materials in hidden areas and by improving firefighting tactics. Work will also continue on structural composite flammability issues. Fire protection against shipment of hazardous materials is a growing concern. They have done work on lithium batteries, which were in the news recently with a nation-wide recall of lap tap batteries. The UPS fire in Philadelphia a few months ago had implications as to the severity of that problem. Next-generation batteries may be fuel cells posing another series of problems in air travel. Halon is the agent used today for fire suppression. It is not being manufactured any longer due to environmental issues, so they are testing replacement agents to make sure they are effective. Work will also continue on long range research on ultra-fire resistant materials. So, the folks who work in the Fire Safety Branch have their hands full with new and better approaches to both old and new problems facing aviation.

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3. ATCA/FAA/NASA Technical Symposium Held in Atlantic City

By Barbara Harris-Para

The recent annual Air Traffic Control Association (ATCA) meeting in Atlantic City began with a golf outing at the Marriott Seaview Hotel and Resort. The golf enthusiasts managed to stay relatively dry despite the inclement weather. Registration ran smoothly due to the excellent work of the volunteers from both ATCA and the William J. Hughes Technical Center. U.S. Rep. Frank LoBiondo was present for the welcoming reception held on Monday evening. The following morning, Wilson Felder, Director of the Technical Center, gave the keynote remarks during the first of seven sessions discussing the Next Generation Air Traffic System (NGATS). Some of the panelists that participated in this discussion were Bob Pearce, Acting Director, Joint Planning and Development Office (JPDO), FAA Air Traffic Organization (ATO); Neil Planzer, Vice President for Strategy, Advanced Air Traffic Management (ATM); Boeing Company; and Jaiwon Shin, Deputy Associate Administrator, Office of Aeronautics, NASA.

Many Tech Center employees were able to participate in the exhibits free of charge on Tuesday and Wednesday. Among the exhibitors were the FAA Tech Center’s Technology Transfer program, the FAA Academy, the FAA Logistics Center, APPTIS, BARCO, Boeing, Hi-Tec Systems, L-3 Communications, NASA Airspace Systems, NICE Systems Inc., Panacea Consulting, Inc., Sun Microsystems, Inc., Verizon Federal and others.

Session two dealt with “Defining NGATS” with Jim Williams, Director of Systems Engineering, FAA Air Traffic Organization, as the moderator.� Ed Waggoner, Director, Enterprise Architecture, JPDO was the framer.� Ken Arkind, Engineering Fellow and NGATS Architect, Raytheon, Frank Frisbie, APPTIS, and Robert Jacobsen, Director, Airspace Systems, Crown Consulting, Inc. were the panelists for this discussion.�

Expanding on the NGATS topic was session three on “NGATS Operational Improvements Roadmap.” It featured Michael Harrison, Aviation Management Association and the editor of The Journal of Air Traffic Control, Air Traffic Control Association.� The framer for this session was John Scardina, Director of Portfolio Management, FAA JPDO.� Panelists were: Harry Swenson, Principal Investigator for NASA’s Next Generation Air Transportation System ATM Airspace Project, Michael Wambsganss, Chief Executive Officer, Metron Aviation, and Jim Williams.

On Tuesday, two buses brought the ATCA participants to the Tech Center for seven tracks of technical breakout sessions where technical papers were presented. Participants noted that different technologies that are being developed through partnerships between Government, industry and academia were well received.

Session four dealt with “Network-Enabled Operations” with Gene Hayman, Manager for Advanced Systems, Advanced Air Traffic Management, Boeing as moderator. The panelists were Fred Gill, Vice President for Transportations Solutions, Computer Science Corporation; John Kefaliotis, Director, Business Development, FAA and Air Traffic Control Programs, International Telephone and Telegraph (ITT) Defense, and; Sid Rudolph, Director, Aviation Solutions Architecture Lockheed Martin. The framers were Mark Andrews, Weather Integrated Product Team (IPT) Lead, JPDO and Col. David Rhodes, Shared Situational Awareness IPT Lead, JPDO.

Session five dealt with “Required Total System Performance and the Safety Management System.” John Cavolowsky, Deputy Program Manager for Technical Integrations, Airspace Systems Program, NASA Ames Research Center, was the moderator.� Framers were Kathy Abbott, Agile Integrated Product Team, JPDO and Jay Pardee, Safety IPT Lead, JPDO.

Dr. Lisa Porter, Associate Administrator for Aeronautics, NASA was the featured speaker at the luncheon held on Wednesday.

“Cooperative Surveillance and Dynamic Airspace” was the first session after lunch, and featured Gary Church, President, Aviation Management Associates as moderator.� Framers for this session six were Doug Arbuckle, Agile Air Traffic Management IPT, Lead JPDO, and Col. Allen “Al” Wickman, Deputy Director for Airspace, Ranges and Airfield Operations, Headquarters, U.S. Air Force. Panelists were Michael Ball, Senior Customer Account Representative, Northrop Grumman; Nancy Kalinowski, Director Systems Operations Airspace, FAA ATO; Randy Kenagy Director of Advanced Technology, AOPA; and Alex Smith, Chief Executive Officer, Rannoch Corporation.

The last session was a wrap-up discussing “Transformation – Let’s Go” with Neil Planzer, Vice President Strategy, Advanced Air Traffic Management, Boeing Company. Panelists were Peter Challan, Vice President Civil Programs, Harris Corporation; Gerald Thompson, Chairman, Jerry Thompson and Associates; Marc Viggiano, President Air Traffic Systems, Sensis Corporation; and Don Zarefoss, Director Of Aviation Strategy, Lockheed Martin.

The three-day symposium was very informative and provocative. It opened one’s mind to the need to think about being more aggressive in the future design of our airspace, and to think about what the needs of aviation will be and how we will cope with all the necessary changes. It was clear that it takes more than one organization to get the entire job completed; this must be a collaborative effort. As we found out during the attacks on September 11, 2001, we were not prepared to share information with all the components that use our airspace over the United States, i.e. Military, Homeland Security, commercial and general aviation, FAA, JPDO and Air Traffic Controllers.

The members of the Core Planning Team were Rick Page, Carleen Genna, Nelson Miller, Richard Coughlin, Bernice Benitez, Patty Naegele, Lana Haug, and Barbara Harris-Para. Along with the Core Team, the hosts were very important to the overall success of the Technical Center tours. The hosts were Stephanie Bell, Jose Benitez, Amanda Petitt, Jan Edwards, Melissa White, Jose Perez, Bessie Johnson, Pat McKernan, Patrick Eigbe, Russ Smith, Bernice Merly, Linda Olivo, Dana Picorale, Geraldine Desseaux, and Barbara Harris-Para. Subject matter experts also were employed during the conference, and they were Don Marple, Andy Colon, Nelson Miller and Rodney Guishard. ATCA on-site supporters were Chinita Roundtree-Coleman and Jan Edwards at the Atlantic City Sheraton Hotel and Conference Center.

A multitude of presenters from the FAA, Tech Center, JPDO / Mitre, and NASA made the conference successful, including Robert Fietkiewicz, Mike Petri, Anthony Stevens, Clifton Baldwin, Dr. Robert Esposito, Jennifer Morris, Victor Wullschleger, Bill Wanner, William Benner, John Frederick, Mike Paglione, Paul Jones, Michelle Hovan, Ed Johnson, Mark Ballin, Dr. Bryan Barmore, Dr. Heinz Erzberger and Dr. Banavan Scidhar, Richard Coppenberger, Thomas Graff and Joe Sherry.

Carleen Genna, Lead, ATCA Technical Symposium, and Rick Page, Technical Team Lead for Technical Discussions, ATCA Technical Symposium, expressed appreciation for all the team members who were able to pull together and enhance the image of the Technical Center in the eyes of the aviation community. A special “thanks” also goes to ART-Z Graphics, Ginger Cairnes, Carol Hewitt, Annette Harrell, Carl Genna, Teresa Lucchesi, Christine Brenner and Robert Williams for being a terrific support team!

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4. Available Technologies: Inventions Made by Contractors and Grantees

By Deborah Germak

Government agencies have long been encouraged to promote the commercialization of patentable results of federally funded research. Inventions that are conceived or first actually reduced to practice in the performance of the work under a Government agreement (contract, grant, or cooperative agreement) are known as “subject inventions”.

Under the patent provisions of Government funding agreements, recipients must disclose each subject invention that they make to the Federal agency and may elect to retain title to any patentable subject matter. If the recipient retains title, the Government is granted a broad license to use the invention for Government purposes throughout the world. The recipient who retains title to the invention may exploit that invention in the commercial market in any number of ways.

The FAA has identified approximately 60 active patents resulting from FAA funded agreements. These patented technologies are available for use by the Government, and its contractors, on a cost-free basis when used for Government purposes. To peruse these technologies, please see the following website:

http://www.tc.faa.gov/technologytransfer/ttpatentsthru_grant.html

FAA researchers are invited and encouraged to view these available technologies when contemplating new research prospects to determine if a technology is already available.� The patent titles are hyperlinked to the U. S. Patent and Trademark Office where you will be able to see the complete patent abstract.

(Note:� The contract and grant numbers are provided when available. Some of these technologies were developed through funding by the FAA’s Aviation Security Research and Development Division when it was part of this agency.)

This website will be modified with any new updates. If you have any questions or comments about this issue, please contact Deborah Germak, the agency’s Technology Transfer Program Manager, at (609) 485-9862 or deborah.germak@faa.gov.

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5. Aviation Enrichment Mini-Symposium 2006

By Ginger Cairnes

In the early morning hours of August 10, a sudden change of alerts from “code yellow” to “code orange” caused security to tighten and created a back up at the Tech Center’s main gate. Children accompanying parents to this long-awaited day grew anxious as to whether or not the annual Aviation Enrichment Mini-Symposium (AEMS) would take place. Thanks to an extremely efficient guard staff, the day’s activities were delayed for only about half an hour.

Mother Nature came through with “flying colors” in the weather department, enabling attendees at the AEMS not only to enjoy events in the atrium and various facilities, but also to enjoy the activities that were held outside. Months of preparation were invested in order to provide Center employees and their families an educational day about our many projects, facilities, programs and research and development. Center Director, Dr. Wilson Felder, welcomed the crowd in the atrium and explained the events for the day.

The number of technical tables increased from previous years. Hands-on activities enhanced that which was being demonstrated. Displays included: Biometrics, Alternative Fuels Vehicles (transportation and equipment used to cut costs and protect the environment), Airport and Aircraft Safety research, Security, Fingerprinting, the Wright Brothers and Air Traffic Control simulators, Weather, a Hot Air Balloon Basket, static radio-controlled aircraft and simulator programs, an electric-controlled aerobatic display (during lunch) and the FAA’s High Performance Research Vehicle with its 55-� foot penetrating boom.

Tours included: the Target Generator Facility (TGF); an Air Traffic Control Labs package (ETMS and STARS); research and development (FASTER and the Wind Tunnel); a visit to the Air National Guard’s 177th Fighter Wing F-16s; the Tower/TRACON modeling & simulation building; the ADS-B lab; the Federal Air Marshal shooting ranges; the Fire House; the Ground Test Vehicle; the National Airport Pavement Test Machine; the Free Flight Technology Lab; the U.S. Coast Guard Air-Ground Unit; and the Egg Harbor Township K-9 unit.

Intensity was evidenced on the faces of the children who participated in workshops where they created: 3-D Hot Air Balloon posters, Fuji Rockets, wind socks, Planet Saturn Mobiles, posters of the planets that were displayed according to their distance from the sun; and paper aircraft that they were able to fly in competition.

Older children created flight plans and learned aviation and aerospace trivia. They also learned weather concepts used in aviation and built mini-wind socs. A computer graphics workshop helped teens learn how to create websites using graphics and also included a discussion on computer security “dos and don’ts”.

During lunch, homemade ice cream that was served from a special “chemical wagon” with a steaming, frosty silver bowl proved to be a big attraction. Children also learned about aerodynamics while playing parachute games and creating giant bubbles outdoors.

The outstanding success of this event can be credited to all who assisted with the tours, workshops and displays as well as to the Tech Center’s Management Team, the 2006 AEMS Planning Committee, the NAFEC Association, people who work on the Tech Center’s security, maintenance, bus driver and technical staffs, and anyone else who provided support for this event. Ginger Cairnes, Aviation Enrichment Mini-Symposium Chairperson, would like to thank all who contributed in any way to this daylong event.

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6. Helping Ensure Safe, Reliable Fuel for the General Aviation Fleet

By Stan Ciurczak

Editor’s Note: William C. (Bill) Cavage was interviewed for this story, and Dave Atwood was kind enough to review the first draft and make comments. This writer wishes to thank Bill and Dave for all their time and effort. I also would like to acknowledge some of the employees who were responsible for the design of the “R&D” facilities at NAFEC: James DeMaree, Wayne Howell, Eugene Klueg, Charles Middlesworth, William Neese, Eldon Nicholas and John Sommers.

Located in a separate section of the Technical Center are ten buildings that commonly are referred to as the “R&D” or research and development area. Built in the early 1960s, these buildings were needed to continue the aircraft safety work that was being done at the Civil Aeronautics Administration’s Technical Development Center (TDC) in Indianapolis when that work was transferred to the FAA National Aviation Facilities Experimental Center (NAFEC) in 1958. NAFEC was renamed the FAA Technical Center in 1980. This article is about some interesting work that is underway today in the FAA’s unleaded fuels program in the R&D area.

Let me begin by quickly reviewing a little history. The 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments banned the sale of leaded fuels, but provided an exemption for aviation, marine, racing, and farm use. Low-lead aircraft fuels are not banned. Unleaded Fuels Research program activities are conducted in direct support of the FAA’s intent to comply with the 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments. The Tech Center’s Fuels Research Laboratory was constructed and its Small Engine Test Facility was expanded in the late 1990s in response to changes mandated by Congress and the Environmental Protection Agency.

The work done at the Tech Center has been conducted for more than 15 years in cooperation with a group called the Coordinating Research Council (CRC) Committee. The CRC addresses issues such as engine detonation, engine performance, durability (engine and component life), material compatibility volatility (vapor lock), storage stability, water reaction, emissions and changes in fuel consumption.

The CRC established an Aviation Gasoline Committee, and two subcommittees, to share research on replacing the current low-lead fuel with an unleaded alternative. The subcommittees are the High Octane Rating Aviation Gas (AvGas) and the Unleaded Avgas Development Subcommittees. The thrust of these groups is to provide and share research on unleaded fuels toward the replacement of the current leaded aviation gasoline (100 LL). The Tech Center’s Dave Atwood is vice chairman of the Aviation Gasoline Committee.

As part of the high octane rating group, many years ago the Airport and Aircraft Safety Research and Development Division at the Tech Center octane rated four "Worst Case" piston spark-ignition aircraft engines to determine what unleaded motor octane these engines actually required. This data provided a starting point for petroleum and other companies to determine what motor octane any new unleaded fuel would need in order to satisfy the majority of the fleet. The Tech Center also tested low, mid and high octane unleaded and leaded fuels of equivalent octane to determine if the lead component has an effect beyond what the single cylinder engine motor octane test can determine. It turned out that it does.

These results were used to develop a matrix of unleaded fuel components and a MON statistical model. Thirty unleaded blends were formulated and then detonation tested in one of the worst-case engines and a report was published. The results were used to develop a model to predict actual engine knock performance based on fuel composition.

A new series of fuels is currently being formulated and 45 new unleaded blends will be tested at the Tech Center.

The Tech Center has tested several proprietary unleaded fuel blends in both engine knock and engine endurance tests. The tests were conducted to study areas such as detonation, performance, vapor lock, wear, oil dilution, deposit formation, startability, hot fuel, materials compatibility and enrichment.

FAA researchers in the Unleaded Aviation Gasoline Program have actively participated in an industry wide effort to develop an unleaded aviation gasoline for spark ignition piston aircraft engines for more than a decade. This effort is facilitated by the CRC High Octane Aviation Gas Subcommittee, which identified the motor octane requirements of the then current engine fleet as the initial fuel development target. The subcommittee is comprised of aircraft user groups, engine manufacturers, petroleum producers, specialty chemical companies, and a number of laboratories, universities and regulatory agencies.

Tech Center testing has had several key benefits. For example, we provided feedback to the engine and propeller directorate concerning the development of an American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) International specification protocol. The feedback guides applicants in understanding what they would have to do to obtain or develop a fuel specification in either ASTM or another specification body. While the FAA neither regulates nor develops specifications for fuels, it would be very difficult to certify an engine for operation on a fuel that does not have an existing specification.

The Small Engine Test Facility does not develop fuels; it provides independent research that is essential in the safe development of an unleaded, high-octane fuel. Basically, there are three separate areas of investigation in the FAA’s unleaded fuels program. They all revolve around facilitating the transparent and safe replacement of the current leaded fuel being used by piston, spark ignition aviation gasoline engines. The difficulty arises in that the cost of any new unleaded replacement is expected to be pretty high relative to the motor octane required.

Octane is the single most important characteristic of any new fuel formulation. Engine and fuel tests have been conducted to validate the octane requirement that is acceptable within the GA fleet. The Tech Center’s labs developed test procedures and performed tests on several representative GA aircraft engines. This includes in-flight performance verification tests using a modified FAA Aero Commander 680E airplane.

Using an experimental unleaded fuel and standard reference fuels, initial octane rating fuel tests were conducted on four engines and derivative models of the same engines. The tests were conducted to determine minimum octane requirements for candidate unleaded fuel formulations for oil companies participating in the CRC committee. The Tech Center then evaluated these fuels through a series of performance and safety-related engine piston tests.

In the late 1990s, the Tech Center continued working on development of an unleaded aviation gasoline for use in the existing fleet of GA aircraft with piston engines. Center employees validated ground-based procedures for determining octane requirements for unleaded aviation fuel, and initiated in-flight and ground evaluations of high-octane, unleaded aviation gasoline formulas provided by industry.

Replacing the current leaded fuel requires testing in many different areas, including performance issues, fuel specifications and material compatibility. The Tech Center, an independent engine test facility with extensive experience in testing piston aircraft engines, was tasked to determine the octane ratings of four engines known to be the most sensitive to octane ratings, because a fuel that met the octane requirement of these engines would satisfy the octane requirement of the overwhelming majority of the piston engine fleet.

With the support of the CRC aviation gasoline subcommittees, the Tech Center’s small engine test facility has had several important accomplishments. Dave Atwood wrote and published two ASTM standard practices:

1) ASTM D 6424, Standard Practice for Octane Rating Naturally Aspirated Spark Ignition Aircraft Engines, and

2) ASTM D 6812 Standard Practice for Ground-Based Octane Rating Procedures for Turbocharged / Supercharged Spark Ignition Aircraft Engines. Included in these standard practices is the referee numerical and sensing method that Atwood developed for the quantification of engine cycle detonation intensity levels.��

The CRC decided that a universal engine octane rating should be developed, including knock detection and analyses methods. The Tech Center was asked to develop a test procedure for the octane rating of naturally aspirated aircraft engines in order to determine the minimum motor octane so that knocking does not occur. FAA employees at the Tech Center developed test parameters designed to simulate the most severe engine conditions that would be experienced in flight. They then developed a numerical analysis technique to quantify the combustion instability of an individual cylinder pressure cycle, after reviewing tens of thousands of cylinder pressure waveforms that were generated at the Tech Center.

Future testing at the Tech Center’s small-engine test facilities help define the safety and performance of other critical in-service aircraft engines that have not been tested with newer unleaded fuels, and to develop other new or alternate fuels.

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7. Update: Aviation Research and Technology Park

By Jay M. Fox

Plans continue for an Aviation Research and Technology Park (ARTP) to be run by a private sector non-profit entity, but located on FAA Technical Center Property. The goal is to create a premier state-of-the-art facility that will provide national and international leadership for the future of aviation, while delivering aviation technologies necessary to the Next Generation Air Transportation System (NGATS), a major intergovernmental and private sector initiative aimed at updating our national air transportation system.

The proposed ARTP is currently the subject of a feasibility study funded by Atlantic County, the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA), the Atlantic County Improvement Authority (ACIA), the Richard E. Stockton College of New Jersey, and the South Jersey Economic Development District (SJEDD). These partners, along with many others including the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority (CRDA), Rutgers University, and a consortium of Technical Center contractors, are seeking to establish a world-class campus offering a national aviation technology resource through a dynamic and innovative partnership between government, industry, academia, and the southern New Jersey community.

The contract for the feasibility study was let by the ACIA to the Philadelphia office of Wallace, Roberts & Todd (WRT), a national regional planning and architectural firm.� The completed study will include a market assessment and analysis for the research park (including an implementation plan), an environment assessment of the proposed site, and a master plan and conceptual design for the project.

Apart from the global significance of an ARTP dedicated to NGATS research is the need for another regional anchor for high technology jobs. Recently, the Rutgers University’s Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy released a report entitled An Economy at Risk:� The Imperatives for a Science and Technology Policy for New Jersey.� That paper sets forth the following:

  • Globalization places knowledge-based industries under severe cost imperatives, because
    • Worldwide cost structures are significantly below U.S., and
    • Knowledge-based services are mobile
  • Knowledge-based economy is shifting from high-cost locations (northeast) to lower-cost locations (sunbelt)
  • Three of the highest paying sectors in New Jersey, information services, financial activities, and professional and business services, lost over 34,000 jobs between 2000 to 2005
  • Generally, New Jersey is losing high-paying jobs and replacing them with lower-paying jobs

The report concluded that New Jersey now faces its most uncertain economic future since the Great Depression.� That finding is a reason why Governor Corzine’s staff has taken a strong interest in the park. Advocates for the ARTP have recently met with Gary D. Rose

, Chief, Governor’s Office of Economic Growth, along with Dr. Carl Van Horn, Chair of the New Jersey Economic Development Authority and a professor at the Bloustein School.

On June 21, 2006, U.S. Rep. LoBiondo announced approval of $250,000 in federal funding for the proposed Aviation Research and Technology Park.� The funding is to be used by Atlantic County for design and site development.

“Plans for the park at the FAA Tech Center are clearly progressing, which is great news for both Atlantic County and the aviation industry at large,” said LoBiondo.� “I am pleased to secure this funding for the proposed aviation park that will bring additional high-skilled jobs into South Jersey and fuel innovation in the aviation technology sector.� I will continue to work with the FAA Tech Center, Stockton College, and all vested parties to make this proposal a reality.”

Dr. Herman J. Saatkamp, Jr., President of Stockton College responded by stating that the college was “appreciative of Congressman LoBiondo’s successful efforts to secure federal funding for the Aviation Research and Technology Park. Congressman LoBiondo’s commitment to the Park, in which the college is a partner, will provide us with opportunities for education, internships, and research far beyond that which is available to other liberal arts colleges.”

Atlantic County Executive Dennis Levinson also expressed his gratitude for Congressman LoBiondo's support.� “As a result of his commitment, we are now closer to our goal of securing a state-of-the-art aviation research and technology park that will serve to strengthen our nation's evolving air transportation system.”

On September 15, Stockton College will host an academic summit of numerous universities and colleges in support of the ARTP.� And with the feasibility study to be completed this fall, even more activity is anticipated as the ARTP takes flight from concept to creation.

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8. Eastern Region Gives Out Safety Awards

By Barbara Harris-Para

Each year Eastern Region recognizes individuals who are contributing to safe operations in general aviation. Two Tech Center employees received awards at this year’s ceremony: Christopher Dumont and Barbara Harris-Para. Both have been Safety Counselors for the Philadelphia Flight Standards Office for a number of years.

Chris, a flight instructor with the FAA Flying Club, also has done a number of presentations on aircraft icing. Barbara instructs at Hammonton Municipal Airport and has been a presenter at safety seminars as well. Both Chris and Barbara helped create the Crew Resource Management (CRM) video that was produced in conjunction with the Flight Services District Office and Art-Z Graphics about a year ago.

Barbara and Chris have made a commitment to insure safety in general aviation. They spend at least one evening each year renewing their counselor status, along with numerous programs throughout the year at several airports including the Tech Center.

A wonderful breakfast was provided before the ceremony and beautiful, inscribed pen and pencil sets were presented to the award recipients.

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9. Gus Sarkos Receives Rutgers Alumni Engineering Award

By Pete Castellano

Constantine “Gus” Sarkos, manager of the FAA’s Fire Safety Sub-team at the Technical Center, has won the 2006 Distinguished Engineer Award from the Engineering Society of the Rutgers University Alumni. Sarkos received this prestigious honor for his outstanding, long-time contributions to improving fire safety in commercial and military transport airplanes.

Sarkos leads the group that conducts the FAA’s aircraft fire safety research and development (R&D) program. They have been instrumental in developing fire safety products and new test standards that have made flying safer for the American public, and worldwide. These products have saved many lives by providing additional time for passengers to exit a plane safely, by slowing the fire and smoke that may follow a crash, and by preventing accidents caused by in-flight fire.�

Practically every fire safety improvement mandated by FAA over the past 20 years is a product of the fire safety R&D program. The most recent examples of the group’s innovative work have resulted in new, more stringent fire test standards for thermal acoustic insulation; the development of a simple, cost effective fuel tank inerting system, which enabled the FAA to issue a notice of proposed rulemaking to prevent fuel tank explosions; and the retrofit of the U.S. airline fleet with cargo compartment fire detection/suppression systems – a total of 3,400 aircraft were retrofitted.

Sarkos has authored more than 60 reports and papers related to aircraft fire safety, and he has lectured on the subject at 75 technical meetings. His outstanding work has earned him 31 awards, during his 36-year FAA career. These include the Distinguished Technical Center Employee of the Year, the Department of Transportation Secretary’s Award for Meritorious Achievement, and induction into the U.S. Space Foundation / NASA Hall of Fame.

Sarkos earned bachelors and masters degrees in mechanical engineering from Rutgers University.�

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10. The 2006 “Ride Your Bike to Work Day” event was held on May 31, 2006.� Participants met in the parking lot at the Wawa on Airport Circle before proceeding down Amelia Earhart Boulevard and through the Main Gate into the Technical Center.

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11. Technical Center Hosts Top Chinese Aviation Officials

By Ginger Cairnes

Editor’s Note: The FAA’s administrator, Marion C. Blakey, and the FAA Air Traffic Organization’s chief executive officer, Dr. Russ Chew, gave speeches on September 18, 2006 at the U.S.-China Aviation Summit. The speeches were titled “Xieshou Binjiin – Walk Together Hand in Hand” and “Meeting the Challenge of Growth.” They cover a number of important topics, including the creation (April 2006) of a Joint Next Generation Air Transportation System Steering Group by the U.S.� and China.� You can access the Administrator’s speech at: http://www.faa.gov/news/speeches/news_story.cfm?newsId=7393 and Dr. Chew’s speech at: http://www.faa.gov/news/speeches/news_story.cfm?newsId=7390

A delegation of officials from the Civil Aviation Authority of China’s (CAAC) Center of Aviation Safety Technology recently kicked off a trip to the U.S. with a visit to the Technical Center. The eight key aviation executives spent three days at the Technical Center, from August 21-23, gaining knowledge for a feasibility study to learn about: the business operation of the Technical Center and how it establishes and implements its research and development programs; the Tech Center’s experiences in laboratory construction; how the Tech Center has upgraded safety, research and testing abilities in several existing areas, as well as in new arenas.

The Chinese aviation officials delved into issues, such as: how new laboratories can help solve safety problems facing the Chinese CAAC; how the FAA analyzes and determines the need for creating and maintaining its testing labs; and who would be best able to share information on funding and building space requirements with the authority, from our past program experience.

The first day at the Tech Center included: operations and maintenance discussions; budget issues; air traffic programs; laboratory visits; future communications; and ongoing work in minimum separation standards. Day two focused on airport and aircraft safety research and development and transportation security briefings. Day three covered: Tower/TRACON modeling and simulation; human factors staffing, future workstations and virtual reality; navigation (WAAS/LAAS); and the Tech Center’s “flying fleet” of test aircraft.

The CAAC Center of Aviation Safety Technology attendees included: Xie Zinan, deputy chief engineer; Dinghao Shi, director general; Hongyu Yao, senior engineer; Liping Chen, captain; Baoshu Liu, official, general administration; Yanfeng Mao, official, general administration; Jun Zeng, official, general administration; and Ying Liu, interpreter.

After its three-day Technical Center visit, the group also planned to spend time in Washington, DC, with the National Transportation Safety Board. Then, it was off to Oklahoma City’s Mike Monroney Aeronautical Center and Civil Aerospace Medical Institute to learn about their work in: human factors, aircraft and airmen information, standards development for pilot and aircraft performance, flight procedures, and automated systems development and support.

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12. Capacity Modeling and Analysis Group Hosts Capacity Seminar and Workshop

By Helen Monk

Over the past 30 years, the Capacity Modeling and Analysis Group at the Technical Center has developed, tested and applied fast-time simulation models to evaluate potential airport capacity improvements in response to the FAA System Capacity, Planning and Improvement Program. The results of these evaluations provide the technically sound quantitative data that is essential to informed decision making at all levels of the FAA and its Air Traffic Organization. The group has more than 150 years of collective experience investigating various capacity improvement options at almost every major and medium airport in the U.S., and a number of foreign airports.

Since May 1999, the Capacity Modeling and Analysis Group has conducted three capacity seminars and workshops. They are intended to help airport planners in the regions operate more effectively as informed participants and chairpersons of joint government/industry Airport Capacity Enhancement Design Teams. An early participant is now a program manager in the Office of Airport Planning and Programming and works very closely with the Center’s Capacity Group.

The latest seminar, conducted in May 2006 at the Tech Center, was initiated by a request from Steve Urlass and Sharon Glasgow, Office of Airport Planning and Programming, National Planning Division. Eleven airport planners from six regions and headquarters attended the 3-day session. The topics included capacity analysis, "rule of thumb” techniques, analytical tools and models, fast-time simulation models, and approaches used for a quick airport analysis.�

Helen Monk led the Center’s team in the conduct of this most recent seminar.� Other presenters included Jennifer Morris and Joe Richie, with assistance from Gary Renauro and Dan Penrith. Emily Guerrios, Ji’on Brown, John Zinna, Doug Frye, Cassandra Miller, Andy Lamb and Jan Cobb provided assistance in preparing for the seminar.

The participants agreed the seminar was successful in accomplishing its objectives. Their feedback indicated the discussions were informative, useful, and practical. They believed the seminar would help them be proactive and allow them to make better planning and financial decisions.

To underscore the success of the seminars, the Capacity Modeling and Analysis Group has received requests from FAA regional planners for another seminar later this year, as well as one-day seminars in the regional offices. The need for increased airport capacity, a frequent topic in the news and an important issue in the aviation community, has contributed to the requests for additional capacity seminars.

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13. Employee Profile: Lourdes Sanabria – An Inspiration To Us All

By Suzanne Mejia and Carmen DiGiacomo Jr.

Earlier this year, Lourdes Sanabria stepped out of an elevator and walked to her desk at the South Florida Flight Standards District Office. Now, you may be saying, "So, what is the big deal?" Well, for those that know Lourdes and her history, this event brought tears to their eyes.

The FAA hired Lourdes Sanabria in November 1998 as an Aviation Clerk in the Miami Flight Standards District Office (FSDO). The 23-year old was attending college and supporting her widowed mother. She was the proud holder of a private pilot certificate with an instrument rating and was about to take a check ride for her commercial pilot rating. She dreamed of someday being an airline pilot.

Then, just six months later, on April 8, 1999, while Lourdes was stopped at a red light in her car, a drag-racing drunk driver slammed into the driver side of Lourdes’ car. He fled the scene, but later was apprehended by police.

Lourdes was taken by helicopter to the Ryder trauma unit. She was in a coma and had severe injuries with multiple fractures on the left side of her head.

Her road to recovery has been a tough one. The coma lasted for three months. When Lourdes came out of the coma she could not breathe on her own. She could not eat or talk, and she barely could move. She had to learn to do these things all over again.

Almost two years later, on March 21, 2001, Lourdes returned to work in a wheelchair. Although she only worked four hours a day, three days a week, Lourdes was able to receive a full paycheck, thanks to the hundreds of hours donated to her through the Voluntary Leave Transfer Program.

Last year Lourdes began working full-time. She has full use of her left arm and some use of her right. Her legs are strong, but her equilibrium is off, so she will fall backwards when she stands if she does not have support. Her speech is improving and the doctors are still working with her on new techniques to make it even better.

Although her dream to be a commercial pilot was wiped out by her head injury, her spirits are still high. She comes into work each day ready for a new challenge. On this special day the challenge was walking to her cubicle. The father of another young lady who also was injured in a car accident created a special walker that allows Lourdes to stand and walk without falling over. She still needs help getting to a standing or sitting position, but this device gives her much more mobility and allows her to exercise her legs.

Lourdes continues to inspire us on a daily basis. She always has a smile on her face and is ready to tackle any task she is given. She stands as an example of determination to overcome adversity and a willingness to enjoy the life she has been given.

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14. Tech Center Welcomes Federal Security Officers�

By Ginger Cairnes

What started out as a recent welcome and familiarization tour at the Tech Center for Ron Faccipont, the newly named Federal Security Director at Atlantic City International Airport (ACY), and John Anderson, ACY Regulatory Inspector, grew by leaps and bounds to include other Federal Security Directors, Screening Managers, Regulatory Inspectors, Law Enforcement personnel and inspectors from Harrisburg International, LaGuardia, JFK and Newark Liberty Airports.

Other attendees included Michael Elliott, Steve Brock, Douglas Hofsass, John Marigliano, Frank Fiumano, Paul Bostic, Donald Basso, Mike Torres, Pat Boyle, John Pellegritti, Maria Volpe, Michael Aberijon and Dale Mason.

They toured a number of areas including the Federal Air Marshals, Information Security, the Transportation Security Laboratories, Standard Terminal Arrival Replacement System (STARS), Weather and Radar Processor System (WARP), Integrated Terminal Weather System (ITWS), and Tower/TRACON Modeling and Simulation.

Many members of the group said they plan to return to the Tech Center to explore more airport security and screening issues and to visit the Full-Scale Fire Test Facility.

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15. Holly Cyrus Receives an MBA from Capella University

By Terry Kraus

Holly Cyrus of the Technical Center’s Airport Technology Research and Development Branch recently graduated with a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree from Capella University. She had a 4.0 grade point average and serves as an ambassador for Capella University.

The graduation event was held in the Heritage Forum (Anaheim, CA) and featured Wally Amos, the founder of Famous Amos Cookies, as the keynote speaker. For those who could not attend in person, Capella broadcast the event live via a web cast. More than 230 Bachelor's, Master's, and Ph.D. degrees were presented during the ceremony.

Founded in 1993, Capella University is an accredited online university that currently serves more than 14,500 enrolled learners from all 50 states and 63 countries.

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16. IRAC Retreat Held at the Technical Center

By Paul Dever

The FAA’s Spectrum Testing and Engineering Analysis Office at the Technical Center recently hosted an Interdepartmental Radio Advisory Committee (IRAC) Retreat. The retreat was held in the Tech Center’s Central Viewing Area (CVA) in the Red Brick Building.

Participants included representatives from DOT, NASA, the National Science Foundation, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA). and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). There also were representatives from the U.S. Departments of Commerce, Homeland Security, Interior, Justice, Agriculture, Energy, State and Veterans Affairs; plus the U.S. Air Force, Coast Guard and Navy.

The purpose of IRAC is to advise NTIA in matters of developing and executing policies, programs, procedures and technical criteria pertaining to the use of government spectrum. NTIA is a government organization that was charted by the Communications Act of 1934.

In addition to the private IRAC meetings, FAA personnel contributed:

    Introductions (Wilson Felder, John Wiley and Paul Dever)��� WJHTC Spectrum Engineering Presentation (Paul Dever) VHF/UHF Radio Testing and Mobile RFI Detection Presentation (Ed Coleman)� WJHTC Communications, Navigation and Surveillance (CD)Interference Monitoring Detection System (IMDS) and National Operations Control Center (NOCC) Presentations (James Aviles)Demonstrations at Building #176 (RCAG)

- Radio Parameters (Ed Coleman)

- RFI Tahoe 4WD (Rich Dunklee)

- Ultra Wide Band and RFI Resolution (Marty Badinelli and Kiem Hoang)

    WJHTC Facilities Tour (Ginger Cairnes and Barbara Harris Para)

A special thanks goes to Richard Morton for coordinating security and obtaining badges, directions and transportation for the various IRAC government visitors.

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17.� Pride in What We Do: Tech Center Achievements in the News

By Stan Ciurczak

Ongoing project work at the Technical Center has been widely reported in the media and in professional journals of late. Naturally any one of us would feel a sense of personal pride if our work were published. Stories about the Tech Center help inform taxpayers and the aviation industry about the ongoing work of the FAA. But I’d like to think they also serve another purpose, which is to make each of us proud to work here.

I believe that pride in what we do is an important element that should define each and every person who works here. I hope that seeing stories in print, or on TV, about the work that is being done at the Tech Center will inspire pride in each of us (current and former Tech Center employees alike) in the work that has gone on here for almost 50 years in the service of the FAA and the flying public.

Here are a few examples of stories I became aware of, through various FAA reports, in the past few months.� I’m sure there are others that I missed, but I hope that these examples will make you proud to be here like I am.

Dave Atwood, an aerospace engineer in the FAA's unleaded fuel program, based at the Technical Center, wrote an article that was published in a special "Global Aviation Fuel" supplement to the June issue of International Airport Review.� Atwood's article gave an update of the FAA's research into alternate general aviation fuels, and the agency's initiative to bring industry, academia, and the aviation community together in this effort.

The Philadelphia Inquirer recently ran a front-page story about a joint FAA / Drexel University fellowship program in aging aircraft research. The writer recently visited the Tech Center’s panel test facility (the full-scale aircraft structural test, evaluation and research facility known as FASTER) and was given an overview by Dr. John Bakuckas, the FASTER test lead. The writer, who had previously visited Drexel University and spoken with university faculty who are involved in the fellowship program, met with Rob Pappas, the FAA’s aging aircraft research program manager here at the Tech Center, about the overall aging aircraft research program.

Bob Grupe of Air Safety Week interviewed Dr. William Gale, Auburn University professor and executive director of the FAA’s Center of Excellence for Airliner Cabin Environment Research (ACER), about the overall research being conducted by the center. Some key projects funded by the FAA include ozone in passenger cabins, exposure and risks of pesticides on-board aircraft, new cabin pressure effects, incidents, contaminant transport, sensors and decontamination. A front-page story ran on June 26.

The Technical Center received coverage from NJ Network (NJN) News and the Atlantic City NBC affiliate on a technology symposium that was hosted by the Tech Center. The Mid-Atlantic and Aviation Technologies Expo, sponsored by the NJ Technology Council, featured exhibits, technical paper presentations, tours and a debate on the top 10 technology trends for the future. NJN’s science and technology reporter interviewed Deborah Germak, FAA Technology Transfer Program Manager, and Dr. Richard Lyon, Operations Planning Research and Development Fire Research Program Manager.� Both discussed the importance of tech transfer in advancing new technologies and patenting new products. Lyon’s patented microscale combustion calorimeter is now being produced commercially.

Wayne Rash, of E-Week magazine, recently interviewed FAA fire safety expert, Richard (Dick) Hill, about battery testing that has been conducted in the Tech Center’s fire safety laboratories. The FAA has been testing the flammability of bulk-stored batteries in the cargo hold at the Tech Center. Dick Hill also did an on-camera interview with a crew from Cineflix Productions, Inc., a Montreal-based company that is producing a documentary about the 1983 Air Canada 797 accident. Dick, who worked as an investigator for the National Transportation Safety Board in that accident investigation, discussed the many fire safety improvements that have been developed and mandated since that accident, and how that investigation broadened the FAA’s fire safety emphasis to embrace in-flight as well as post-crash fires.

David Carlisle of Aviation Week & Space Technology recently interviewed FAA icing expert, Jim Riley, about tail plane icing research conducted at the Tech Center. In addition, Aerospace America magazine published an article by Operations Planning Research and Development (R&D) safety researchers Jim Riley and Warren Underwood titled, “Icing Research Heats Up” (May 2006). This article details icing research being done by the FAA and other federal agencies and laboratories.

The Journal of Air Traffic Control ran an article by Operations Planning R&D experts William Krebs, Glen Hewitt and Terry Kraus titled, “Building Towers that Meet Human Performance Needs” (April-May 2006.)

There was extensive coverage in the Atlantic City and Philadelphia media, in August, of this year’s Atlantic City Airshow, including the fact that the Tech Center played host to the Blue Angels and other specialty aircraft, on the FAA ramp, prior to the show. The media came to the Tech Center press flights and to interview specialty pilots.

The Tech Center’s advanced imaging group produced video footage of the prototype fuel tank inerting system installed on the Center’s B-747 SP test aircraft. The footage was provided to many television stations, serving as background material to augment their TWA 800 10-year anniversary stories. The stations included CNN and several NY metropolitan network affiliates and independent television stations. The footage also was posted on the FAA’s web site. Our imaging group also is working with Story House Productions, a German-American production company that produces the show “Wonderworld of Sciences,” a science and technology magazine show that airs on a major German television network in Austria and Switzerland. The company wants to produce a segment on research and testing that is conducted at the Tech Center.

By the way, you might want to let your colleagues know if you saw their name in print.� I bet that will make them smile – and feel proud.

Questions or comments (humorous or otherwise) can be directed to:

Stan.Ciurczak@faa.gov

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18.� N40 Has Served Us Well

Dr. Wilson N. Felder

A bit of history was made recently when we had the last scheduled test flight (at least for now) of the FAA’s N40 aircraft. I was on that flight along with the flight crew (Keith Biehl, Mark Ehrhart and John Tatham), the flight briefer (Armando Gaetano), the flight observers (Mike Greco, Stan Pszczolkowski) and the project engineers (MaryAnn Smith and Manuel Gonzalez). The project objective was to validate the Aircraft Geometric Height Monitoring Element (AGHME) upgrades, for the Separations Standards Sub-team, by following a specific route along certain points including Atlantic City, Barnegat, Gibbsboro and Millville. AGHME is used to verify aircraft height for Domestic Reduced Vertical Separation Minimum (DRVSM).

N40 is a Boeing 727 that arrived at the National Aviation Facilities Experimental Center (NAFEC) in 1978 from Eastern Airlines. A “used” aircraft when we acquired it 38 years ago, this aircraft has been used for project work on the Microwave Landing System (MLS), the Traffic Alert Collision Avoidance System (TCAS), NTSB Wake Turbulence Studies (WAKE), the Global Positioning System (GPS), Automatic Dependent Surveillance Broadcast (ADS-B) and Reduced Vertical Separation Minimum (RVSM). Our capable pilots have flown it to Germany, Great Britain, Korea, France, Brazil, Peru, Iceland, Italy and Thailand, among other places, over the years. The N40 would have to be re-certified if it were going to be used again for project work.

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19. Tech Center’s National Transportation Week Essay Contest

By Adam Greco

For the past decade, the Technical Center has been sponsoring an annual essay contest in recognition of National Transportation Week, which is celebrated each May. All middle schools in the five counties throughout South Jersey were provided a transportation theme and students from 6th through 8th grades were invited to participate. The contest is open to students who attend public schools, parochial schools and charter schools, as well as home-schooled students.

Although the essay topics in the past several years have involved aviation, this year’s maritime theme addressed port security. The contest winners are as follows:

8th Grade������������� Morgan Cullers������������� ������������� Mullica Township������������� Mrs. Ottinger’s Class

������������� ������������� Carly Chamberlain������������� ������������� Mullica Township������������� Mrs. Ottinger’s Class

7th Grade������������� Matthew Houser������������� ������������� St. James/Ventnor������������� Mrs. Bruesehoff’s Class

������������� ������������� Mary Given������������� ������������� ������������� St. James/Ventnor������������� Mrs. Bruesehoff’s Class

6th Grade ������������� Jessica Hannon������������� ������������� Lumberton Middle������������� Mrs. Carver’s Class

������������� �������������

Adam Greco and Barbara Harris-Para are the program coordinators for this activity. The program coordinators visit the winners at each school and present a handsome, official plaque to the contest winners. Many other Tech Center employees also participated in the program by reading the students’ essays, scoring them and determining the final winners.

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20. Tour of the Philadelphia Tower

By Adam Greco

A group of Technical Center employees consisting of summer interns, Minority Serving Institution interns, Transportation Security Administration fellows and Federal employees toured the Philadelphia Air Traffic Control Tower in order to familiarize themselves with air traffic procedures.

Philadelphia Tower is the second busiest tower on the east coast after Atlanta Tower. It is bounded by several approach control facilities and is astride two Air Route Traffic Control Centers. The visitors are first introduced to the TRACON room where the radar controllers are directing departing and arriving air traffic.

Their tour guide, Carroll Jones, Project Manager, explains the procedures, methods and details of the radar room and the STARS equipment to the visitors. Next, the visitors are brought up to the Tower Cab where they enjoy a 360-degree, panoramic view of the airport and surrounding area. At this vantage, the visitor can see the aircraft departing, arriving and the ground movement of the various vehicles.

The tour, which is organized by Adam Greco on a periodic basis, usually takes about 3 hours. The tour provides the employees with a greater understanding of the mission of the agency and gives the visitor a first hand perspective of a field operation.

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21. Public Service Recognition Week

By Janet Kinsell

All employees of the FAA and other government agencies that are located at the Tech Center were invited to participate in a celebration held in the atrium. The Center Director, Dr. Wilson Felder, took to the podium to honor public servants, both civilian and military, as part of the national celebration of Public Service Recognition Week.

“This time is set aside to pay tribute to all of you who serve the public. Public service requires a certain intensity of dedication and commitment,” Dr. Felder stated before the hundreds of employees who gathered for the event. Leading those assembled through a recitation of the pledge of allegiance, the new Center Director explained that the pledge is evidence of dedication to duty. He then introduced Zack Williams, who sang a moving rendition of the national anthem.�

The director went on to say, “For the past 20 years, since 1985, the first Monday through Sunday in May has been set aside to honor the men and women who serve our nation as federal, state and local government employees. Throughout the nation and around the world, this is a time to educate people by highlighting the many ways our government serves the people and makes our lives better.� It is a time to thank all of you for the wonderful work that you do.”

He then stated that this is a difficult time for our country, the future of aviation and the future of our nation overall.� He shared with us that he lives with this thought daily as his son is serving our country in Afghanistan.

“To quote an excerpt from a letter written by President George W. Bush,” he said, “Public service is a high calling and an expression of responsible citizenship. Our nation is deeply indebted to the men and women who devote their lives to careers that serve the public good. Throughout our country, public servants at all levels of government work to improve our lives, advance prosperity and protect our homeland. Your efforts reflect the best of the American Spirit.” His appreciation continued as he introduced the members of the Tech Center’s Senior Leadership Team, the Human Resources Management Division, Civil Aviation Security, the 177th Fighter Wing and the U.S. Coast Guard.

Loud applause erupted when the director recognized each Center employee for his or her years of service, from “the just beginning employee” to “the 15-plus year veteran.” He commented, “the Technical Center must be a really, really great place to work because the last recognized group was the largest!”

Dr. Felder continued by saying that each employee contributes to the accomplishment of the Center, citing the Advanced Technologies and Oceanic Procedures (ATOP) program, those that configure the laboratories for testing, the folks who work in procurement, to those that require travel and other administrative support. “What you see now is the ATOP team in a much broader view. It illustrates that we all make a contribution to each program.”

In closing, Dr. Felder invited everyone to give him suggestions for improving the Center via a suggestion box that he had placed in the atrium or by e-mail. He thanked those who put the ceremony together, especially the NAFEC Association for funding the cake and punch, and the Advanced Imaging Group for the video that we enjoyed.� His concluding comments were, “It is a great privilege to be here. You are special people and this is a special place.”

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22. Acting Center Director Ron Esposito Retires

By Pete Castellano

On April 3, Acting Center Director Ronald J. Esposito retired from the FAA, ending a long and distinguished Federal career. A retirement dinner was held at Greate Bay Country Club on May 24, attended by more than 150 of his family, friends and colleagues.

Ron completed his career as a civil servant with more than 34 years of Federal service. Over 31 years were spent at the Technical Center, where he held several senior management positions. He retired as the Acting Director, FAA William J. Hughes Technical Center.

Before becoming Acting Director, Ron held the position of Senior Corporate Officer at the Technical Center for two years. In this position he served as the senior advisor to the Center Director, and was responsible for oversight and integration of technical and administrative functions. He represented the Center in matters with officials of local, state and Federal agencies and provided leadership for special projects. He recently served as the FAA lead on the committee to advance the creation of an Aviation Research and Technology Park at the Center.�

Ron previously held the position of Managing Director of the Office of Operations, Technology and Acquisitions (OTA) for three years. The OTA organization combined all of the Center support services into one organization for the purpose of providing seamless service to its customers by utilizing the concept of one-stop-shopping. He was responsible for managing the following organizations among others: Information Technology, Finance, Facilities Services & Engineering, Acquisition/Materiel & Grants, Advanced Imaging, Enterprise Security, Travel & Meeting Management and the Service Liaison Office. He also introduced the use of Service Level Agreements where common expectations, improved communications and the use of metrics became commonplace.

Prior to that, Ron was the Chief of Staff of the Technical Center and he also served as the Service Director for Facilities Management where he was responsible for buildings and grounds covering over 5,000 acres and fully integrated state-of-the-art simulation and test labs that accurately mirror the systems found in the National Airspace System. He also served as Deputy Service Director for Resource Management, which included all administrative services.

While he was the manager of the Financial Management Division his organization was named both the FAA accounting office and budget office of the year. He served as a Strategic Planning Officer and the Manager of the Contracts Branch. As the Manager of the Information Resource Branch, he led the effort to plan and implement the first large-scale purchase of personal computers at the Technical Center. As a Budget Analyst, he had the opportunity over time to work with every appropriation and fiscal program at the Technical Center.

Ron also served as the lead for many special projects. He led the team that designed the FAA’s current performance-based core compensation system and was the co-leader of the team that initiated door-to-door FAA air shuttle operation from the Tech Center to FAA Headquarters, resulting in annual savings of $1 million to $1.5 million.� He also led the teams that relocated activities of the Federal Air Marshals and the U.S. Coast Guard to the Tech Center, where they both enjoy an environment that is well suited for their respective missions. In 1999, the FAA Administrator recognized him for his support of U.S. Vice President Al Gore’s “Reinventing Government” initiative.

During his career at the Center, Ron received numerous awards for his management and leadership skills, including the Technical Center Director’s Award in 1997, the FAA’s Ken Byram Memorial Award in 1999, and, most recently, the FAA Distinguished Career Service Award upon his retirement in 2006.

Prior to working for the FAA, Ron served as a Procurement Analyst for the U.S. Navy from 1972 through 1975. He also is a veteran of the N.J. Army National Guard.

Ron earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration and Labor Relations from Rider University, and a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree from Monmouth College. He also is a graduate of the Federal Executive Institute.

Ron was a Combined Federal Campaign team leader, at the Center, and has been active in his community as an officer with the YMCA Indian Princess / Guides Organization, as an officer and a coach with the Folsom Athletic Association, as a Commissioner of Parks for the Borough of Folsom and as a member of the Saint Martin de Porres Charity Organization.� He also is a member of the Air Traffic Control Association (ATCA)

Ron has been married for 31 years to Roseann Esposito, and has two adult children, Tracy and Tara.

Ron is an extremely kind and personable guy, and will be missed by all who had the pleasure of working with him. Always quick with a smile, I will personally miss hearing his unmistakable laugh ringing out on the fourth floor. If Ron was laughing, all was right with the world.

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23. Atlantic County Institute of Technology’s “Shadowing Day”

By Barbara Harris-Para

Adam Greco, Dana Whicker (Titan) and I recently attended a 2-hour session at the Atlantic County Institute of Technology to introduce the students in the freshman class to different occupations at the Technical Center, and aviation in general.

Dana handed out a brochure titled “Why Become an Engineer,” and talked about her experiences throughout high school, college and the workplace. In the brochure there were many website addresses for follow up by the students.

Adam talked about his experiences as an air traffic controller” in the New York area, and then his transition to South Jersey. He explained, to the students, how they too could get a jump on their future careers by starting now to explore the necessary items needed to become an air traffic controller. He mentioned some of the leading colleges and universities that offer courses to achieve this career.

I presented a PowerPoint presentation that I developed on “Aviation Careers.” I covered a variety of areas from pumping fuel, which requires very little education, all the way through the training for airline pilots. I explained there are many more occupations in aviation including pilot, flight attendant and security management. The entire experience was very worthwhile, because the students took away a better understanding of aviation careers.

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24. Tech Center Supports Boston Runway Modernization Project

Simulations save time, improve efficiency for new Boston runway

By Holly Baker

The Technical Center conducted innovative, invaluable simulations for Boston air traffic personnel recently. The tests will result in immense time savings and greatly enhanced efficiency in the use of Runway 32, a new runway that is set to open on Thanksgiving Day at Boston Logan International Airport.

Construction of Runway 32 on the southwest side of the airport began in 2003 and has been completed.

New operational procedures must be developed to ensure safe, orderly and effective use of the new runway. These procedures include the modification of traffic flows from the Boston TRACON that feed into the airport.

The Center’s Airway Facilities Tower Integration Laboratory (AFTIL) served as the test bed for Boston air traffic controllers and managers to conduct the required operational analysis and to test, verify and validate the suitability of various proposed traffic spacing and sequencing concepts.

The challenge was to try out different methods under assorted conditions to see what worked and what did not, taking into special account the interaction between the tower and the TRACON.

The AFTIL provides a 360-degree view from the tower and simulated aircraft that enable a realistic, total immersion environment. Here, the Boston controllers quickly “controlled” traffic and interacted with each other and with the simulator pilots as though they were actually controlling traffic in Boston. Varied weather, visibility and emergency conditions were replicated, too.

Twelve different operational scenarios were run over three days to determine the most efficient and safe operational configuration. The tests were conducted in a short period of time and at a very low cost.

The simulations conducted at the AFTIL were so realistic and effective that the controllers from Boston revised their planned spacing configurations for Runway 32 operations. The configurations they initially had thought would be best dropped to second choice after they completed the tests. The controllers were delighted with the simplicity of the new traffic flow, which they would not have believed possible prior to the simulations. The simulations showed that this new, simple flow would be safe and would maintain proper separation standards.

Boston tower management raved about the simulations, the capabilities of the AFTIL and the importance of this effort to the safe, efficient use of Runway 32.

“The use of the (AFTIL) simulator was invaluable to us,” said Bettina Peronti, Boston Logan air traffic control tower manager.� “The simulator was a tremendous help to us in conducting our safety risk assessment and for developing procedures for the runway.”

“We went in with a strong idea of what procedures would work for the most efficient use of the runway, and that was based on many years of air traffic control knowledge and experience. The end result was 180 degrees from what we initially had thought would work best. The simulator enabled us to try different options to reach the optimum use of the runway.”

“Mr. Vaughan, Mr. Pallante and the rest of the AFTIL gang were nothing short of ingenious when it came to the orchestration and execution of envisioned goals for this facility,” said Gary Hufnagle, facility support manager. “The lab has shown us ‘proof of concept’ through simulation, and is an invaluable tool for future requirements in data gathering, procedural development, safety risk assessment and efficiency of conceptual flow. The potential is endless; the price was right, too.”

“Our time at the lab was one of the most rewarding experiences I’ve had in my 26 years with the FAA,” said Patricia Pilanen, support specialist for training. “This lab can and should be used for safety risk management, procedural development and training. It’s capabilities and full potential are yet to be realized. It was as if we were standing in our own tower cab and working real traffic.”

All three noted that they would not have come to the correct conclusion as quickly as they did, if at all, without the use of the (AFTIL) simulator. One cannot estimate how long it would have taken to recognize the potential of operating the new runway to its peak potential – it could have taken years.�

Kudos to the Technical Center tower/TRACON modeling simulation group that completed this effort.� They are: Bill Vaughan, AFTIL group lead; John Aschenbach, FAA AFTIL program; John Wilks, FAA AFTIL program; Danielle Stephens and Lauren DiGiovonni, L3 Communications summer intern students; Roger Bawgus, Rodman Bourne and John Pallante, of L3 Communications.

The AFTIL is best known for its innovative tower siting. projects. In the past five years, the program specialists have conducted elaborate tower siting studies for more than 50 U.S. airports, in the unique tower integration laboratory.

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25. Tech Center Represented at AIAA GNC Conference

By Rick Ozmore

Mike Paglione of the Simulation and Analysis Group recently participated in the 2006 American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) Guidance Navigation and Control (GNC) Conference held in Keystone, CO.

A member of the GNC Technical Committee for the second year in a row, Paglione was Area Chair of the Air Traffic Control (ATC) Concepts Track for this year's conference. This required organizing four full sessions of papers, appointing session chairs and co-chairs, and performing and assigning two reviews for the 30 papers in the ATC Track.

Paglione also presented his own paper at the conference, which is titled "Determination of Horizontal and Vertical Phase of Flight in Recorded Air Traffic Data." The paper can be accessed at: http://acy.tc.faa.gov/cpat/docs/AIAA-2006-6772-953t.pdf.

The conference was a resounding success for AIAA with very good attendance and nearly 1,000 papers being presented.

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26. Air Bear Goes to Pennsauken

By Barbara Harris-Para

The FAA Air Bear, Rosanne Weiss, and Barbara Harris-Para participated in the yearly “Space Day” at Carson Elementary School. “Air Bear” welcomed more than 200 students in kindergarten through second grade to a session on aviation.

The video, “Air Bear Goes on a Trip,” was shown to the students. Barbara Harris-Para offered explanations about airplanes, airports and pilots. She asked the students if they had ever flown on a plane before, where they had gone if they had flown before, and if they remembered meeting the airport people they saw in the video.

The entire day was very productive with lots of hugs and smiles from the students for Air Bear. The children were provided coloring books and other materials they could use when they got back to their classrooms.

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27.

Congress Commends the ATO

During a hearing on June 21, the House of Representatives provided a strong endorsement of the FAA's Air Traffic Organization. The Subcommittee on Aviation heard from the FAA Air Traffic Organization's Chief Operating Officer (COO), Dr. Russell G. Chew, and the Joint Planning and Development Office's acting director, Robert Pearce. The two men spoke about the progress the ATO is making and discussed the future of the air traffic system.

"Today we can report real results," testified Dr. Chew. "We are focusing on operations, costs, productivity and sound fiscal management. By operating more like a well-run business, we are able to field new technologies on time and on budget. In fact, last year, 92 percent of scheduled goals were met for 31 major programs, and 97 percent of major acquisition programs met budget goals."

Gerald Dillingham of the U.S. Government Accountability Office also testified that, "ATO has met its acquisition performance goal for the second consecutive year."

Meeting the acquisition program management goal for two years in a row made a big difference with members of Congress, who have been critical in the past of the FAA's ability to field new systems on time and on budget. However, at this hearing, member after member testified on the progress the FAA has made since the creation of the ATO.

Subcommittee Chairman John Mica (R-FL) said, in his opening statement, "I would like to commend FAA Administrator Marion Blakey and Air Traffic Organization Chief Operating Officer Russ Chew for their leadership and efforts to get the vast majority of our Air Traffic Control (ATC) modernization programs on time and within budget."

While echoing this positive view, other members of the committee also brought forward some concerns, including the progress of the FAA Telecommunications Infrastructure program and the amount of money going into the JPDO.

"There is a serious disconnect between rhetoric and resources," said Ranking Member Jerry Costello (D-Ill.), referring to the funding for the transformation of the ATC system. U.S. Rep. Frank LoBiondo (R-N.J.), whose district includes the FAA's Tech Center, was also concerned about the levels of funding and recommended the FAA "step up our investment in the Next Generation Air Transportation System (NGATS)."

Dr. Chew responded that the future investments in the NGATS must be made carefully so that money will not be wasted on programs that won’t provide real results. The Department of Transportation’s Inspector General Todd Zinser agreed, "ATO does deserve all kinds of credit for not going out and spending money on projects we don't need."

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28.� Tech Transfer Efforts Highlighted

Deborah Germak, the FAA’s Technology Transfer Program Manager at the Technical Center, was recently featured in Russ Chew’s FAA NEWS “phone message.” Deborah was singled out for promoting FAA inventors.

You can read the message at:

http://www.ato.faa.gov/800_news/042806_news.pdf

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29. FAA, Rowan University to Collaborate on Surveillance Research

Cooperative Research And Development Agreement Signed

By Deborah Germak

The FAA recently entered into a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRDA) with Rowan University. The collaborative research is in surveillance.

The objective of this collaborative partnership is the development and improvement of a graphical user interface for the display of recorded air traffic data, the display of the predictions of this air traffic data from National Airspace System decision support tools, and a Visualization Framework for radar data integrity. The expected outputs are software and documentation.

This is an excellent example of a partnership with an educational institution by assembling and using students under the direction of a professor to develop and test the project outputs while working with a Government engineer and allowing the collaborative party to have access to a federal laboratory and leverage resources.

The Government’s principal investigator is Mike Paglione at the Tech Center. The principal investigator for Rowan University, the collaborating research organization, is Adrian Rusu. This CRDA was awarded on July 25 and is effective for one year.

If you have any questions regarding this CRDA, please contact Deborah Germak at (609) 485-9862.

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30. FAA, Propeller Companies to Collaborate on Aircraft Safety Research

Cooperative Research and Development Agreement Signed

By Deborah Germak

The FAA recently entered into Cooperative Research and Development Agreements (CRDA) with Hartzell Propeller Inc. and MT-Propeller USA, Inc. The collaborative research is in Aircraft Safety.�

A recent event in a flight test showed unexpected propeller ice accretion in suspected supercooled large drop (SLD) conditions. The objectives of this research are for the FAA to conduct an experimental study, which will document propeller leading edge and runback ice accretion characteristics, and to determine propeller efficiency losses. Understanding propeller ice accretion and resulting efficiency loss are required by manufacturers to properly size the engine power for icing conditions and certification of the propeller ice protection system.

The Government’s principal investigator is Christopher Dumont at the Tech Center.� The point of contact (POC) for Hartzell is Bruce Hanke and the POC for MT-Propeller is Juergen Zahner.

The CRDAs both were awarded in May and each has a duration of 6 months.�

If you have any questions regarding this CRDA, please contact Deborah Germak at (609) 485-9862.

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31. Three FAA Executive Personnel Actions Announced

By Stan Ciurczak

FAA Administrator Marion C. Blakey recently announced the selection of Charles Leader to be the new Director of the Joint Planning and Development Office. Mr. Leader is a 17-year veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps. He is a graduate of Notre Dame University and holds an MBA from Harvard University.

During the past 15 years, Mr. Leader has held CEO and general management positions in several corporations, including Hughes Aircraft. He was also a partner at McKinsey & Co. and co-leader of their Aerospace / Defense practice. His experience includes working in research management, technology development, and systems integration, with a focus on aviation and aerospace.

Mr. Leader began work at the JPDO on August 7. Robert Pearce, who served as acting JPDO Director since last fall, will be the JPDO Deputy Director.

In addition, the Administrator recently announced that Daniel Elwell, managing director of International and Government Affairs for American Airlines, has been named FAA Assistant Administrator for Policy, Planning, and Environment. She also announced that Bill Davis, Vice President of Safety for the Air Traffic Organization, is taking a one-year detail at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, starting in September.

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32. Oakcrest High School Students Hear Motivational Speakers

By Barbara Harris-Para

I was recently asked to be one of a number of motivational speakers at an Oakcrest High School breakfast. Each speaker presented a different perspective on women and careers. Oakcrest teacher Susan Kane is the advisor who arranged the program.

Approximately 35 female and male students listened to discussions on topics such as a women becoming police officers and how to overcome stereotypes. A trial attorney explained that she had come up against some very strong male adversaries during trials. Other speakers included a teacher who decided to change her occupation during her years of child rearing; another teacher who volunteered during the World Trade Center disaster; a hairdresser who became successful, lost it all to drugs and alcohol abuse only to turn her life around, have two children and yet another successful business; and myself, an ex-industrial technology teacher who became a pilot and a Federal employee.

In my presentation, I spoke about the peer pressure I experienced to not to go to college, and I explained how I had entered (and since retired from) a male-dominated field of industrial arts (that today we call technology). I told them I had attended Trenton State College (now the College of NJ) in a curriculum with 140 men. Later, during my master’s degree training, I was the first female to graduate from Glassboro (now Rowan University) in my field.

In all my teaching positions, I was the only female instructor at many meetings. More recently I decided that I wanted to learn to fly, another field dominated by men, especially in the flight-training field. Crossing the gender barrier in both of my chosen occupations did have its moments throughout the years, but it also made my life interesting.

I tried to convey to the students at Oakcrest that, in today’s world, the sky is the limit. But I also reminded them that there is no “free lunch” for anyone. If you do your best, then the rewards will be bountiful. I told them to listen to their inter strength for guidance and go for the gusto, always looking ahead and never behind. Yesterday is history and tomorrow is a mystery, so make the best out of every moment. The other women who spoke gave similar presentations that hopefully will help motivate the attendees to new heights.

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33. Operations Planning R&D Technical Notes

By Pete Castellano

Operations Planning Research and Development (R&D) hosted the FAA Conference on Risk Analysis and Performance Measurement (Atlantic City, NJ) on September 19-20. Rosanne Weiss is the conference chair, and executives from FAA, NASA, and industry are expected to attend.

Center engineers recently conducted the formal Shadow Operations Test of the Runway Status Light System (RWSL) at San Diego (SAN). RWSL is an all-weather automatic system providing safety backup to controllers, pilots and vehicle operators. It offers a means of reducing runway incursions and preventing certain classes of runway accidents by indicating that a runway is unsafe for entry, crossing or departure, thereby increasing situational awareness. The test, conducted with the participation of air traffic controllers from SAN, presented a display of RWSL runway entrance light operation to test participants, and was designed to ensure that light performance would not interfere with normal airport operations prior to the Operational Evaluation, which is planned for later this year.

Operations Planning R&D’s Human Factors specialists recently hosted a technical interchange meeting at the Tech Center’s Research, Development, and Human Factors Lab to discuss evolving concepts of en route air traffic control and the validation of productivity improvements that can be achieved. Attendees included representatives from the Human Factors Research and Engineering Division, their Human Factors Group/Team at the Tech Center, the Simulation and Analysis Group, ATO En Route and Oceanic Services and Mitre's Center for Advanced Aviation System Development. The meeting focused on project and capability presentations, human-in-the-loop simulation demonstrations and discussions.

Dr. John Bakuckas from Operations Planning R&D recently presented the opening plenary lecture at the 9th International Fatigue Congress (Atlanta, GA). His presentation, “Fatigue Studies of a Retired B727 Commercial Airliner,” summarized the major results from a joint FAA - Delta Air Lines research effort. The research focused on developing procedures and data for detailed inspections, destructive teardown evaluation, and extended fatigue testing of high time, high-usage aircraft for guidelines to develop, assess, and approve programs for continued airworthiness.

In addition, R&D researchers, led by Dr. Bakuckas, recently completed extended fatigue testing on a fuselage panel removed from a retired passenger commercial airliner using the FAA’s Full-Scale Aircraft Structural Test Evaluation and Research facility. Researchers removed the fuselage structure, which was susceptible to widespread fatigue damage (WFD), from a Boeing 727 airplane near its design service goal of 60,000 flight cycles. Results from this test will provide key data to enable calibration and validation of predictive methodologies for structural fatigue including widespread fatigue damage assessments. In addition, the results will serve as a test bed to evaluate the sensitivity and effectiveness of standard and emerging nondestructive inspection to detect small cracks hidden in built-up structural joints.

Dr. Terry Allard took over the duties of program manager for Operations Planning R&D’s Human Factors Research and Engineering on June 11. He previously served as NASA's Associate Director of Human System Research and Technology in the Space Exploration Systems Directorate, and as Chief of the Human Factors Research and Technology Division at NASA Ames. Allard holds a Ph.D. in Psychology and Brain Science from MIT.

Glen Gallaway, Operations Planning Human Factors and Research and Engineering Group, attended the International Ergonomics Association's 2006 World Congress (Maastricht, Netherlands). He presented a paper, "Linking Organizational, Managerial, Administrative, and Financial Business Issues to Human Factors Science." He also organized and chaired a panel session, "WE Have What THEY Need, Macroergonomics! How To Market IT To Them" with a number of Sociotechnical world experts discussing how human factors can better support large scale system development. He also served as a closing plenary session presenter in the areas of organizational, managerial, and system integration topics.

Jim Patterson, Operations Planning’s Airport Safety Technology R&D program, conducted a nighttime evaluation of a prototype airport beacon constructed of light emitting diodes (LEDs) versus a traditional incandescent light bulb at the Hammonton Municipal Airport (Hammonton, NJ). Patterson and his team have been actively researching LEDs for possible replacements to existing airport visual aids, as they offer significant savings in power consumption, and a longer life expectancy.

In a recent report, Operations Planning R&D addressed concerns about the fire safety implications of shipping packaged meals with self-heating capability, originally developed for the military. Fire safety researcher Steve Summer documented this research in technical note DOT/FAA/AR-TN06/18, “The Fire Safety Hazard of the Use of Flameless Ration Heaters Onboard Commercial Aircraft.” This research examined the potential hazard associated with the use of flameless ration heaters in an aircraft cabin and with the accidental activation of them in a confined area aboard an aircraft, such as in overhead storage bins or a cargo compartment. Researchers performed tests with individual Meals Ready-to-Eat containing flameless heaters, in an open environment; and multiple Meals Ready-to-Eat, in a confined space, to examine their potential hazard. Temperatures in excess of 215�F and violent ignition events were observed. It is evident from the tests performed that the release of hydrogen gas from these flameless ration heaters is of a sufficient quantity to pose a potential hazard onboard a passenger aircraft.

The International Aircraft Materials Fire Test Working Group, chaired and administered by Operations Planning’s R&D’s Fire Safety R&D program, recently met (Costa Mesa, CA). FAA fire research manager, Richard Hill, hosted the meeting, which was attended by more than 150 people and generated considerable interest because of FAA work to improve the reproducibility of the fire test burner that is specified for the relatively new regulation on thermal acoustic insulation burnthrough resistance. In addition, the FAA is developing a replacement burner with improved control of fuel and airflow that was designed to eliminate any components from a specific supplier. Other topics presented and discussed included insulation radiant panel test, seat cushion test round robin, new electrical wiring and ducting tests, contamination and planned Ohio State University heat release round robin tests.

Operations Planning R&D Human Factors researchers, lead by Dr. Earl Stein, recently evaluated the initial test bed of the Display System Replacement (DSR), En Route Automation Modernization (ERAM), and Future En Route Workstation (FEWS) environments in preparation for a simulation planned for September-December 2006. The FEWS concepts provide controllers with an environment that integrates automation functions and attempts to extend controllers' ability to manage traffic levels projected for the 2015 timeframe and beyond.

The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) held a meeting of the Meteorological Data Link Study Group (METLINKSG) (Montreal, Canada). These annual meetings present the FAA with an opportunity to demonstrate leadership in the provision of global meteorological services through the development of international standards and recommended practices. These standards and practices are documented in ICAO Annex 3 on Meteorological Service for International Air Navigation. Richard Heuwinkel, Manager, Operations Planning, NAS Weather Planning and Requirements Group, is the U.S. Representative for the METLINKSG. Mr. Heuwinkel and several subject matter experts will present over 15 U.S. position papers. The papers have been coordinated with several government agencies and external aviation user groups.

The Technical Center recently awarded a Research Grant to South Dakota State University to study the impact of long term operational use of Aviation Grade Ethanol on aircraft maintenance and engine service intervals.

The Technical Center has entered into a Cooperative Agreement with George Washington University for the study of non-linear finite element analysis, and methods development, for containment of aircraft engine failure.

Operations Planning R&D’s Airport and Aircraft Safety R&D Division has signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) Control Science Division to conduct flight tests of sense and avoid technologies developed by the AFRL for unmanned aircraft systems (UAS). The joint flight tests are scheduled to begin in late October, and the objective of this program is to demonstrate the feasibility of technologies that will provide UAS with the ability to sense conflicting aircraft, determine if there is a collision hazard, and autonomously maneuver to avoid mid-air and near mid-air collisions. The AFRL will provide a surrogate aircraft to simulate UAS flights and the FAA will provide airplanes to fly as cooperative and non-cooperative intruding aircraft. The Flight Test Group and the Engineering Development Services Division at the Tech Center also will support research initiatives under this MOA.

Operations Planning R&D’s Dr. Kelli Willshire (NASA Langley R&D Field Office) will chair a session at the 25th Congress of the International Council of the Aeronautical Sciences (Hamburg, Germany).

Operations Planning R&D Director Joan Bauerlein was an invited speaker at the Airports Conference of the Americas on September 12 (Willemstad, Curacao), where she discussed innovative R&D airport technology solutions to improve airport safety.

Joan Bauerleinalso will host the fall meeting of the FAA Research, Engineering and Development Advisory Committee (REDAC). Established in 1989, the REDAC advises the Administrator on research and development issues and coordinates the FAA's research, engineering and development activities with industry and other government agencies. The committee considers aviation research needs in air traffic services, airport technology, aircraft safety, aviation security, human factors, and environment and energy. Administrator Marion Blakey and key FAA executives, such as Peggy Gilligan, Deputy Associate Administrator for Aviation Safety, are expected to attend the meeting

In addition, Joan Bauerlein, along with human factors specialist, Dr. Tom McCloy, will participate on panels at the AIAA Aviation Technology, Integration and Operations Conference (Wichita, KS).

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34. Airbus 380

By Holly Baker

John Croft, a free-lance writer, was given a demonstration of the computer simulations conducted at the Technical Center for San Francisco, JFK and Memphis International Airports to help them address issues associated with the introduction of the Airbus A380 into commercial service. Arrivals and departures to and from runways, taxiways and gates were simulated to address the potential impact of the size, wingspan and other aspects of the new large aircraft at each airport. The presenters were Jennifer Morris and Joe Richie of the Tech Center’s Modeling & Analysis Sub-team.

In addition, Croft met with Gordon Hayhoe at the Tech Center’s National Airport Pavement Test Facility, where six-wheel landing gear configuration testing is now underway and work was conducted that is associated with design standards for the A380.� Look for a story on this visit in the October issue of Airport magazine, which is published by the American Association of Airport Executives.

Click on the following link to read their online article titled Runway Safety in the October issue of Airport magazine, which is published by the American Association of Airport Executives: http://www.aaae.org/news/100_Airport_Magazine/100_Current_Issue/

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35. Tech Center Helps Save Aircraft

An innovative runway arrestor designed in part by the FAA Technical Center in Atlantic City, N.J., has again prevented an overrun incident from becoming a serious accident.

When a landing aircraft overruns the end of a runway there can be disastrous results; the aircraft may run into a body of water, busy highway or nearby residential area.


A Gemini Cargo McDonald Douglas 11 stopped by EMAS at JFK International Airport in New York. Photo: FAA

Although the FAA now requires a safety area of 1000 extra feet beyond the end of the runway, many older airports do not have the physical real estate needed to build additional length at the end of a runway.

One solution is called a “Soft Ground” arrestor, a bed of jet-blast-resistant cellular cement blocks placed at the end of a runway to decelerate an overrunning aircraft in an emergency.

Such an emergency occurred July 17 when a Dassault Falcon 900 business jet was landing on Runway 01 at Greenville, S.C. Downtown Airport. The aircraft experienced a brake system malfunction and overran the runway, but it was safely brought to a controlled stop within 100 feet of the threshold. There were no injuries among the two-man crew and three passengers, and no significant damage to the aircraft was reported thanks to the engineered material arresting system.

Over the past decade the Technical Center, in cooperation with Engineered Systems, Co. of Aston, Pa., has conducted research into the design and effectiveness of EMAS. Research began with the development of a mathematical model to predict the factors associated with an overrunning aircraft. In 1996, full scale testing was used to successfully validate the model.


A Polar Cargo Boeing 747 stopped by EMAS at JFK International Airport in New York. Photo: FAA

EMAS is now considered a proven technology and has been installed at more than 15 locations throughout the United States, with several more in the planning and design phase. Even before last month’s save at Greenville, EMAS has demonstrated its capabilities with four previous safe decelerations of overrunning aircraft.

In May 1999, a Saab 340 commuter aircraft overran the runway into the EMAS at JFK International Airport. In December 2002, EMAS safely arrested an overrunning Pacific Jet Gulfstream II at Burbank Airport in California. In May of 2003, an overrunning Gemini Cargo MD-11 was safely decelerated at JFK International Airport. And in January 2005, a Boeing 747 cargo plane overran runway 04R at JFK International Airport and was safely decelerated about 300 ft into the EMAS. In all cases, serious damage to the aircraft was averted and there were no injuries to passengers on board.

Above all, these accidents highlight the importance of the work done by the FAA Air Traffic Organization in aircraft and airport safety research and development.

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36. FAA-Flying Physicians Seminar

By Barbara Harris-Para

Recently, the Technical Center conducted an all-day seminar in the auditorium for the Flying Physicians organization, thanks to Eileen Iandola, Aviation Safety Program Manager, Philadelphia Flight Standards Office.

Approximately 50 individuals from a three-state area attended the seminar, which covered various topics from aircraft icing to medical conditions that would affect a pilot’s medical standings. Dr. Dara Parvez, an Ocean County oncologist, covered several topics dealing with aviation physiology and survival.

Chris Dumont of the Tech Center presented his research findings on icing during flight on general aviation aircraft. A Crew Resource Management DVD titled� “An Approach to System Safety” was one of the topics covered during the daylong event.

Thanks to the Tech Center’s Advanced Imaging Division, room scheduling group, the Tech Center’s Security Operations Center, the security guards who screened the attendees, the folks who prepared the delicious meals and the volunteer safety counselors. In addition, Eileen Iandola deserves a lot of credit for all her efforts to keep programs like this one interesting and informative for the general flying public.

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37.� Credits:

William J. Hughes Technical Center

“Inside the Fence”

Technical Center Director

Dr. Wilson N. Felder

Acting Program Director,

Office of Organizational Excellence

Maudie M. Powell

Editor

Stan Ciurczak

Assistant Editor

Pete Castellano

Writers

Holly Baker

Pete Castellano

Stan Ciurczak

Ginger Cairnes

Mary Lou Dordan

Jay Fox

Deborah Germak

Barbara Harris-Para

Rick Ozmore

Photographers

Stan Ciurczak

Ginger Cairnes

Ernie Pappas

Laurie Zaleski, Art-Z Graphics

David Hess, Art-Z Graphics

Design & Layout

Dave Hess, Art-Z Graphics

Contributors

Dr. Terry Kraus

Ray Stover

Ken Stroud

Please contact the editor with your comments, questions or stories at: stan.Ciurczak@faa.gov

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