St. Louis University's Parks College of Engineering, Aviation and Technology is proud to host SAFECON Region VI competition next week at St. Louis Downtown Airport. The week-long event is sponsored by the National Intercollegiate Flying Association (NIFA) to encourage college student aviators to interact with fellow students at other institutions while sharpening their flying skills and aviation knowledge. Teams from other college aviation programs were given a day to practice their precision landings and ground handling techniques all day Sunday.
The day's activities were like a "dress rehearsal" for the flying competition that will be held later in the week. Collegiate team pilots flew their precision landing practice flights in groups of four aircraft, each one from a different school. According to the competition rules, the aircraft are manually placed in the starting box marked on the apron by ground crews. The pilots start, taxi out to the runway, fly their landing patterns and precision landings, and taxi back to a marked receiving box. The aircraft are again manually placed in the parking area or starting box by ground crews. After a few cycles, the pilots and ground crews achieved quick turnaround times, enabling more pilots to get landing practice flights.
The pace of the competition will change on Monday as the teams gather at the St. Louis University academic campus for a comprehensive briefing and several intensive contests. In the Computer Accuracy event, team members must solve aircraft performance and navigation computation problems using a manual flight computer in a given time period. The Aircraft Recognition Event tests the team member's ability to identify an aircraft manufacturer, model and name after viewing an image for only three-seconds. Lastly, the Simulated Comprehensive Aircraft Navigation Event is a written exam that tests the team member's ability to solve problems related to planning a cross-country flight.
Look for more of The Aero Experience coverage of the SAFECON Region VI competition this week. We again thank St. Louis University and the Parks College Flying Billikens, FBO host Ideal Aviation, the Greater St. Louis Air & Space Museum, the visiting collegiate flying teams and everyone who has contributed to planning this great Midwest Aviation event.