Press Release

Student Aviation Design Competition Winners Named

By SpaceRef Editor
July 26, 2002
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NASA and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)
honored students from seven universities today as winners of
the 2002 University Student Competition, an annual
competition created to foster student interest in
revolutionizing general aviation. Winning projects were
recognized at an awards ceremony at the annual Experimental
Aircraft Association’s (EAA) AirVenture fly-in at Oshkosh,

Senior representatives from NASA’s Langley Research Center,
Hampton, Va., and the FAA presented the awards on behalf of
NASA’s Office of Aerospace Technology and the FAA.

The nationwide competition is part of a government effort to
stimulate technology breakthroughs and their application to
general aviation. General aviation aircraft are generally
defined as single- or twin-engine, single-pilot, fixed-wing
aircraft. This year, students were challenged to pursue
innovative systems and technology concepts in support of
NASA’s Small Aircraft Transportation Systems research

In the systems innovation category:

* Kansas State University’s Department of Psychology,
Manhattan, took first place for its advanced cockpit system.
The team’s design assists non-instrument-rated pilots to land
in poor weather conditions by simplifying complex flight

* Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, tied for second
place with George Mason University, Fairfax, Va. The Georgia
team produced software that simulates a variety of travel
situations, allowing travelers to choose options that best
suit their needs. The Virginia team analyzed the potential
for fractional ownership of small jets, and proved the
concept is a practical alternative to current air travel.

* An honorable mention went to a second team from George
Mason University for its independent and ground-based air
traffic management system.

In the technology innovation category:

* University of Virginia’s Engineering Department,
Charlottesville, took first place for “Alaris,” an aircraft
concept that produced outstanding performance by combining a
lightweight wing and body with a powerful turbofan engine.

* A team from Virginia Polytechnic Institute, Blacksburg,
and Loughborough University, Leicestershire, United Kingdom,
took second place. Their joint effort resulted in “Ikelos,” a
uniquely designed aircraft that allows very short takeoffs
and landings.

* Third place went to Douglas Burch, an electrical
engineering student from Ohio University, Athens, for his
enhanced heads-up display for future aircraft.

* Honorable mention went to the University of Oklahoma,
Norman, and two teams from Ohio University, Athens, for their
innovative vehicle concepts.

All winners received a cash award, a commemorative trophy for
their institutions and certificates of appreciation. Two
students from the winning Kansas State University team were
awarded internships, which they are serving at Langley this
summer, in conjunction with the research center’s Aerospace
Research Summer Scholars program.

The 2003 competition will be broadened to include a separate
high school division and include categories beyond general
aviation. The all-new Revolutionary Vehicle Concepts and
Systems Competition will be sponsored by the NASA
Headquarters Office of Aerospace Technology, Langley Research
Center and Glenn Research Center, Cleveland. Langley’s
Vehicle Systems Technology Office will lead the effort.
Details will be available Aug. 15 at:

For images of this year’s Technology Innovation winning
designs, visit:

SpaceRef staff editor.