Two teams place second in National FAA Design Competition

June 19, 2013

In the seventh annual Design Competition for Universities by the Federal Aviation Administration, two CU-Boulder teams took second place for airport environmental interactions.

One of the teams, advised by Professional Angela Bielefeldt, examined the fuel spills at Bozeman International Airport. The students designed a method to safely and quickly recover up to 100 gallons of spilled fuel.

The other team, which was advised by Professor Karl Linden and Bielefeldt, looked at LED runway and taxiway lighting with solar panels. As part of the students’ proposal, LED runway lights would be installed with solar panels to improve energy needs for Grand Junction Regional Airport. The design included a solar photovoltaic array that will annually generate 49 MWh of electricity. This is just enough to power the lights.

“The two student teams responded to a fairly broad call from the FAA on topics and developed well-thought out, innovative plans for energy efficiency and fuel spill cleanup tailored to specific airports and presented their designs in well-organized reports,” Linden says. “We are very proud to have our environmental engineering design teams achieve two second-place finishes in this national competition.”

The competition’s purpose is to engage university students in addressing issues facing airports while providing quality educational experiences and exposure to aviation and airport-related careers.  The six technical challenge areas included airport operations and maintenance, runway safety, airport environmental interactions, airport management and planning, innovative application of FAA data and electric/hybrid-electric aircraft technology.  Students were required to work with a faculty adviser and airport operators and industry experts in order to determine the practicality of their proposed designs and solutions.

In the seventh annual Design Competition for Universities by the Federal Aviation Administration, two CU-Boulder teams took second place for airport environmental interactions.

One of the teams, advised by Professional Angela Bielefeldt, examined the fuel spills at Bozeman International Airport. The students designed a method to safely and quickly recover up to 100 gallons of spilled fuel.

The other team, which was advised by Professor Karl Linden and Bielefeldt, looked at LED runway and taxiway lighting with solar panels. As part of the students’ proposal, LED runway lights would be installed with solar panels to improve energy needs for Grand Junction Regional Airport. The design included a solar photovoltaic array that will annually generate 49 MWh of electricity. This is just enough to power the lights.

“The two student teams responded to a fairly broad call from the FAA on topics and developed well-thought out, innovative plans for energy efficiency and fuel spill cleanup tailored to specific airports and presented their designs in well-organized reports,” Linden says. “We are very proud to have our environmental engineering design teams achieve two second-place finishes in this national competition.”

The competition’s purpose is to engage university students in addressing issues facing airports while providing quality educational experiences and exposure to aviation and airport-related careers.  The six technical challenge areas included airport operations and maintenance, runway safety, airport environmental interactions, airport management and planning, innovative application of FAA data and electric/hybrid-electric aircraft technology.  Students were required to work with a faculty adviser and airport operators and industry experts in order to determine the practicality of their proposed designs and solutions.