ATLANTIC CITY, N.J., Sept. 18 -- Nearing completion of an FAA evaluation for certification, a?
ATLANTIC CITY, N.J., Sept. 18 -- Nearing completion of an FAA evaluation for certification, a production All Weather Landing System for the Air Force C-141 Star Lifter has carried the big transport all the way to touchdown more than 300 times at the National Aviation Facilities Experimental Center here.
In these fully automatic landings, the 145-foot long fanjet aircraft has touched the runway within 12 feet of either side of the center line, and within approximately 300 feet of either side of a determined touchdown point.
This progress report was made today by C.H. Cannon, of the Lockheed-Georgia Company, Marietta, Ga., program manager for the C-141 All Weather Landing System. Under contract administered by the Aeronautical Systems Division. Air Force Systems Command, Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio, the All Weather Landing System was developed jointly by the Air Force, FAA, and Lockheed for installation on the Military Airlift Command's entire C-141 fleet.
By the end of September, when the C-141 AWLS is expected to be certificated, it will be the first approved by the FAA to control an aircraft all the way to the ground, Mr. Cannon said. Automatic coupled approaches with this system will allow FAA certification to land in weather with a 100 foot ceiling and 1,200 foot runway visual range. In addition, the system has automatic flare capability, and landings complete to touchdown are being conducted automatically.
Thus, where other All Weather Landing Systems return control of the plane to the pilot at 100 foot altitude, the C-141 AWLS retains control all the way to the ground, with the pilot on standby for visual observation and manual operation if necessary.
James Robinson, pilot from the Atlanta Southern Region FAA Office, is conducting the inflight evaluation of one test C-141. Frank McGowan and Gene Raymond, of the FAA's Atlanta office, flying a second test StarLifter.
Major S. A. Babin, of the Aeronautical Systems Division, is conducting evaluations on the system for the Air Force.
Performance tests on the production All Weather Landing System have been in progress at NAFEC since July 23, 1967, carried on jointly by the FAA and Air Force. Lockheed Engineering Flight Test crews are assisting.
In October, C-141s will be delivered to the Military Airlift Command with the All Weather Landing System installed. All C-141s now in service will be retrofitted with production AWLS.
"The C-141 system is one of the most fully integrated and advanced systems in production today," Mr. Cannon asserted. "Prior to development of the system, more than two years of design studies were documented to determine the optimum system for the C-141. Requirements and specifications were established jointly among the Air Force, FAA, and Lockheed during this period."
Instead of a "building block" approach using previously developed equipment, the C-141 specifications called for a completely integrated system, with all equipment especially designed to meet the stringent requirements of this advanced system, Mr. Cannon pointed out.
In addition to the automatic pilot and flare computer for the automatic landing of the airplane, other new equipment consisted of the development of a new flight director system, radar altimeter, automatic throttle system, rotation and go-around system, and new pilot displays.
An advanced feature is a new test and logic computer which was developed to allow automatic testing of the system in flight prior to let-down, and to provides monitoring of the various sub-systems for detection of failures and for automatic indication to the pilot and fail-safe disengagement of any faulty component.
Major subcontractors selected to build the equipment to Lockheed specifications are Lear Siegler, Inc., Grand Rapids, Mich., flight director; Bendix Guidance and Control Division, Teterboro, N.J., automatic pilot and flare computer; United Controls, Redmond, Wash., automatic throttle, rotation and go-around system, and the test programmer and logic computer; and Minneapolis Honeywell, Minneapolis, Minn., radar altimeter.
Introduction PERFORMANCE TESTING OF A NEW FAA-AIR FORCE-LOCKHEED ALL WEATHER LANDING SYSTEM IS NEAR COMPLETION AT THE FAA's TEST FACILITY IN ATLANTIC CITY, NEW JERSEY. CHARLES CANNON OF LOCKHEED-GEORGIA COMPANY IS PROGRAM MANAGER FOR THE SYSTEM, WHICH IS INSTALLED ON A C-141 STARLIFTER AIRCRAFT. MR. CANNON, HOW IS THE SYSTEM WORKING?