EAS IX: Dr. Seeley’s Magnum Opus

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, GFC, Sustainable Aviation 0 Comments

Your editor first met Dr. Brien Seeley, founder and President of the CAFE Foundation, at the Western Workshop for the Experimental Soaring Association in 2007.  Dr. Seeley spoke about the CAFE Foundation and its many areas of research, including its first two Electric Aircraft Symposiums.  Seven years later these events and this blog are among the few resources for people seeking information on this developing field. He spoke then about a novel idea, an aerial taxi service that would eventually become fully autonomous, hauling people on short-to-medium range trips in small, electric aircraft that would fly out of very small airports.  This seemed a bit of science-fiction at the time, but Dr. Seeley has continued to promote this idea, gaining …

Whistling at High Frequencies in the Dark

Dean Sigler Sustainable Aviation 1 Comment

The same millimeter wave-length scanning that sees through your clothes at TSA’s very personal pre-flight inspections in airports could also provide a new type of heads-up display for pilots.  With an ability to distinguish power lines and other finely-resolved images in otherwise total visual blackouts, the technology could find a place in navigation, searches, and even private flying.  A few drawbacks stand in the way, however. Extremely high frequency MMW devices sense objects at a range just below that of the lowest frequency infrared light.  The high frequency allows a high level of discrimination in imaging. Used in automobiles for applications such as radar braking and adaptive cruise control, the potential for adapting such devices to weather flying is promising.  …