Yesterday Professor Hart took some of the Mechanical Engineers on an all day tour of the Atlantic City Airport in New Jersey. We left at 7:35am and got back at 6:50pm (part of that time was spent in traffic).
While we were there we got to tour one of the hangers of the 177th Fighter Wing, New Jersey Air National Guard. This unit flies the F16C Fighting Falcon and is tasked with the air defense for this part of the country. In the hanger we visited we were able to see 4 F16s. Now we were not allowed to take pictures of the control panels in the plane (for security reasons) but we could take photos of the outside of it. So here is one photo I took.
Another facility we were able to see is a FAA test facility were they stick new devices for testing into aircraft, fly the aircraft and test how the new devices work. They have many aircraft there for different altitudes and speeds of testing. They not only test aircraft but also helicopters too. Here are some of the airplanes and the helicopter that we saw.
After we visited that test facility we went and saw the Air Station Atlantic City which is home to a coast guard helicopter squadron. This squadron is tasked with protecting the United States coast all the way from Connecticut to Virgina. Also they are tasked with protection of the United States Capital. They fly the MH-65D Dolphin Helicopter which has a crew of 2 pilots, a flight mechanic and a rescue swimmer. Here is a picture of one of their helicopters landing.
One of the final places that we went to go and see was the National Airport Pavement Test Facility. In this facility they have a huge machine that rides on train tracks and uses pistons to push aircraft tires into pavement and concrete with a total force of over 1 million pounds. The reason that they do this is to test whether current airport runways are able to take the weight of an aircraft rolling along the runway. This machine will go back and forth along the “runway” to simulate the wear and tear that an airport would experience over many years. When we visited it they were in the process of putting in the pavement and concrete so we could go up to the machine. Here are some pictures of it:
This was a very fun trip and I hope to go on it again next year.