Four cutting-edge aerospace technology endeavors will compete for the National Aeronautic Association’s 2016 Robert J. Collier Trophy.
Blue Origin, a developer of spaceflight systems, is developing the New Shepard, a suborbital space vehicle with “10 times the room Alan Shepard had on his space flight” that seats six and “is large enough for you to float freely and turn weightless somersaults,” according to the manufacturer.
Dassault has been nominated for the Dassault Aviation FalconEye Combined Vision System, a first head-up display “to blend synthetic, database-driven terrain mapping and actual thermal and low-light camera images into a single view.”
The U.S. Air Force 212th Rescue Squadron, known as “the busiest rescue force in the Department of Defense,” and the global mobility mission unit, the 249th Airlift Squadron, also were nominated.
A selection committee led by NAA Chairman Jim Albaugh will meet on March 14 in Arlington, Virginia, with the winner to be announced that evening at the NAA Spring Awards Dinner.
The formal presentation of the Collier Trophy will take place at a date and location to be determined later, the NAA said.
For 105 years, the Collier Trophy has been awarded annually “for the greatest achievement in aeronautics or astronautics in America.” Past winners have included the crews of Apollo 11 and Apollo 8, the Mercury 7, Scott Crossfield, Elmer Sperry, and Howard Hughes.
Projects and programs that have been the recipient of the Collier include the Boeing B-52 Stratofortress, the Polaris missile, the Surveyor Moon Landing Program, the Boeing 747, the Cessna Citation, the Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor, and the International Space Station. The 2015 Collier was awarded to the NASA/JPL Dawn Mission Team.