July 9, 2009
NASA announced that it will combine satellite imagery with computer models and artificial intelligence to come up with a system that will be able to warn ocean-going pilots of dangerous thunderstorm-related turbulence. The National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) in Boulder, Colo., is a partner in the project.
The idea is to identify rapidly evolving storms and other potential areas of turbulence. Satellites to be used include NASA’s Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM), Terra, Aqua, and CloudSat satellites. The information from them will be merged with NCAR’s existing expertise in forecasting turbulence around storms, as well as in clear air.
“Our goal is to give pilots a regularly updated picture of the likely storms ahead as they fly over the ocean, so they can take action to minimize turbulence and keep their aircraft out of danger,” said NCAR scientist Cathy Kessinger, a project team manager.
The research project, set to begin tests next year, follows the crash of Air France 447. The Airbus involved in the crash is suspected to have encountered severe turbulence after penetrating thunderstorms off the coast of Brazil.
For a look at some images relating to the prototype turbulence-detection system, see NASA’s Web site.
A state-of-the art medical facility on remote Tangier Island in the Chesapeake Bay serves as a lasting memorial to the late Dr. David B. Nichols’ dedication to providing medical care to the community for 30 years. Now, Nichols’ aviation legacy—flying a Cessna 182 or Robinson R44 to the island every Thursday to provide that care—is set in stone.
Daher-Socata announced that it had installed the first Garmin G600 and GTN 750 avionics in one of its 2004 TBM 700C2 airplanes.
Even brief flight under actual conditions can expose how well your basic instrument flying is serving.
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