2001 Student Design Competition

For release: Immediate
Contact:  L. Kim Smith, (703) 684-6777

The University of Maryland and Georgia Institute of Technology Take Top Honors
in the 2001 18th Annual AHS/Industry/NASA Student Design Competition

ALEXANDRIA, VA – AHS Executive Director M. E. Rhett Flater announced that the University of Maryland came in first place in the 18th Student Design Competition and Georgia Institute of Technology captured second place honors.  Boeing – Philadelphia was the sponsor of the eighteenth annual competition which rotates sponsorship among Boeing – Philadelphia, Boeing – Mesa, Sikorsky and Bell Helicopter Textron, Inc.  NASA is also a major underwriter of this program.

The AHS Student Design Competition, which challenges students to design a vertical lift aircraft which meets specified requirements, provides a practical exercise for engineering students at nationally accredited colleges and universities.  The competition promotes student interest in vertical flight technology.  The first- and second-place winning teams are awarded a cash stipend and the winning team is invited to the AHS Annual Forum and Technology Display to present their winning entry.  Members of the teams receive one-day complimentary registration to the forum, the vertical flight industry’s principal professional technical event.

This year Boeing-Philadelphia challenged participants to develop a conceptual design of a modern civil Search and Rescue VTOL rotorcraft that incorporates new and innovative methods for controlling the pitch of the rotor blades.  The Boeing sponsors were keen to have designs that were not dependent upon the use of traditional swashplate mechanisms.  The dual-piloted aircraft also had to fly IFR, have a mission range of 600 nautical miles and be able to rescue two people and return to base.  In a departure from prior years, the competition included a new element – an oral competition.  The two teams squared off at the Boeing Philadelphia facility and the University of Maryland and its “Raven” concept emerged victorious.

For those interested in more information about the AHS Student Design Competition, please visit our web site at www.vtol.org.

AHS International – The Vertical Flight Society is a professional, technical society founded in 1943, that represents the interests of the worldwide vertical flight industry.