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Using Engineering Design Class To Develop A Transitional Training Device For Aviation Students

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2007 Annual Conference & Exposition


Honolulu, Hawaii

Publication Date

June 24, 2007

Start Date

June 24, 2007

End Date

June 27, 2007



Conference Session

Teams and Teamwork in Design I

Tagged Division

Design in Engineering Education

Page Count


Page Numbers

12.1544.1 - 12.1544.9



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Paper Authors

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Ibibia Dabipi University of Maryland-Eastern Shore

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Bryan Burrows-McElwain University of Maryland-Eastern Shore

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Anthony Stockus University of Maryland-Eastern Shore

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Christopher Hartman University of Maryland-Eastern Shore

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Using Engineering Design Class to Develop a Transitional Training Device for Aviation Students Abstract:

Primary Flight students encounter a negative transfer of information early in their flight training while learning to taxi (steer) an airplane in the airport environment. Non-pilots rely on using their hands to manipulate vehicular movement in automobiles. In aircraft, the control yoke does not become effective for turning the airplane until sufficient airflow is achieved while in flight. In addition, directional control on the ground is not achieved by movement of the ailerons or the elevator. In most general aviation aircraft, directional control on the ground is achieved by a steerable nose wheel and/or the deflection of the rudder. Early in the training process, students must overcome the strong desire to control the aircraft’s movement by the use of control yoke inputs and instead, use the rudder pedals.

The challenge for freshman engineering students is to design a mechanical device that simulates the steerable nosewheel control system for use by pilots early in their training process. The engineering students were challenged to create specifications for a turning radius for the device. This involved investigation of how a steerable nosewheel operates on an actual airplane. Based on these specifications, the students were challenged to design a mechanical linkage system that allows the freedom of movement to meet these specifications.

This design project gives engineering students an opportunity to apply design principles to a practical project. The engineering students gain an understanding of work as a team; work with the client, and the sequence and process of design. Beginning pilots using the device gain an enhancement of motor skills that positively transfer to learning to steer the airplane.

This paper addresses the experiences of engineering and aviation science students to achieve these objectives.

I. Introduction:

The need for multidisciplinary cooperation in a global economy necessitates the need to introduce projects that increasingly engage students early in their freshman engineering year in college. With a dynamic market place, graduates need to be able to interact effectively in diverse fields. One important goal of multidisciplinary design is to identify the many solutions needed to solve a single problem while keeping in mind the many differing objectives of the overall project [4]. A multidisciplinary approach to engineering design is valuable in that it asks that students make certain that, “…advances in performance,… technology, or discipline(s), must be much more highly integrated than in the past” [3]. At the University of Maryland Eastern Shore, (UMES) a steady movement toward more complex design has been the experience of the first year

Dabipi, I., & Burrows-McElwain, B., & Stockus, A., & Hartman, C. (2007, June), Using Engineering Design Class To Develop A Transitional Training Device For Aviation Students Paper presented at 2007 Annual Conference & Exposition, Honolulu, Hawaii. 10.18260/1-2--2163

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