Full-Scale Fire Test Facility
This is the largest and most extensive civil aircraft fire-test facility in the world. It examines the most realistic fire scenarios possible, including massive, jet fuel infernos. Built in 1980, the Full-Scale Fire Test Facility includes a 13,000-square-foot “test cell” of corrugated steel walls, concrete floor and refractory-ceramic ceiling that has been specifically designed for fire testing. The main test cell currently houses a complete B707 and the aft section of a DC-10 that’s connected to a 90-foot long fuselage test section.
Visitors to the Fire Test Facility will see a demonstration of Lithium battery fire suppression.
More Electric Aircraft Laboratory
The More Electric Aircraft lab supports aircraft industry standards (SAE, RTCA, ASTM, and ICAO) and certification office projects associated with aviation’s safe transition to developing and adopting more-electric and full-electric aircraft. Lab capabilities include testing electrical power generation (motor driven generators/starters, hydrogen fuel cells, and alternative power generation sources), electrical power distribution (solid state and thermal), and electrical energy storage (batteries, super capacitors and distributed energy storage units).
Visitors to the More Electric Aircraft Lab will see a 100 VDC hydrogen fuel cell and a demonstration of a “plywood-bird” emulating a 28 VDC electrical system of a small, corporate jet.
Full-Scale Aircraft Structural Test Evaluation and Research
The FASTER lab tests full-scale fuselages under simulated in-flight conditions. The lab’s research explores several issues related to the structural integrity of fuselage applications, including fatigue damage, tolerance characteristics of current and emerging metallic and composite designs, performance of bonded and mechanically fastened repair technologies, the assessment of conventional and emerging non-destructive inspection, and advanced structure-monitoring methods. Together with other government agencies, industry and academia, this facility leverages resources to provide critical data needed by both industry and the FAA to safely introduce new structural technologies into commercial aircraft applications.
Visitors to the FASTER Lab will see an overview of the lab results from previous tests, video clips of the lab at work, as well as the full test fixture in the test cell and past test panels.
National Airport Pavement and Materials Research Center
Airfield pavements must support extreme and ever-increasing loads under all weather conditions. The FAA is hard at work ensuring that our nation’s aviation pavement materials endure these rigors. The FAA’s pavement testing facility has offered unparalleled aircraft load simulation since its inception in 1999. To establish standards for our nation’s airport runways, pavement materials are tested until failure with repeated, realistic aircraft loads.
Visitors to the National Airport Pavement and Materials Research Center will see a demonstration of the state-of-the-art Heavy Vehicle Simulator.
Airport Safety Visual Guidance Program
Beginning in the early 2000s, energy-efficient Light Emitting Diode (LED) illumination has been installed on the nation’s airfields, delivering improved visual cues for pilots and ground vehicle operators. Since then, the Visual Guidance Program has conducted numerous research projects to aid in the airports in their transition from outmoded incandescent lighting to LED lighting.
Visitors to the Airport Safety Visual Guidance Program will see LED lighting, solar lighting, a Visual Approach Slope Indicator, and LED windsock. They will also examine a scale model of an airport with all types of airfield lighting represented.
Aircraft Rescue and Fire Fighting Research Facility
The Aircraft Rescue and Fire Fighting (ARFF) Research Program conducts firefighting research that improves the effectiveness and efficiency of firefighting equipment. The purpose behind advanced firefighting research is to increase passenger survivability under the extremely harsh conditions of a post-crash aircraft fire.
Visitors to the Aircraft Rescue and Fire Fighting Research Facility will see a demonstration of the FAA’s advanced High-Performance Research Vehicle (HPRV) with its 55-foot elevated boom and cabin skin penetration system, and the FAA’s new 2500-gallon 6X6 ARFF vehicle, which serves as the program research platform for new technologies.
Go behind “The Red Brick Wall” and explore the FAA’s Air Traffic Management Automation (ATM) systems laboratories. The laboratories are key ATM assets that are used to conduct test and evaluation on system software, hardware, operating systems, security, and network configurations planned for operational system releases to field sites.
- The En Route Automation Modernization (ERAM) system provides Air Traffic Control (ATC) services in the en route domain at the Air Route Traffic Control Centers.
- Standard Terminal Automation Replacement System (STARS) provides ATC services in the terminal domain at the Terminal Radar Approach Control (TRACON) facilities.
- Advanced Technologies and Oceanic Procedures (ATOP) provides ATC services procedurally to oceanic (international) flights in the offshore ocean domain. This system has three operational installations in the National Airspace System (NAS): Oakland, Anchorage and New York Air Route Traffic Control Centers.
Visitors to the ATM systems laboratories will see how these automation platforms combine to transition thousands of flights daily through the National Airspace System (NAS) within the U.S., as well as internationally, in a safe and expeditious manner.
The National Aviation Research and Technology Park (NARTP) is dedicated to facilitating research and development, innovation, and commercialization of emerging aviation technologies. Its mission is to enhance the evolution of aviation sciences by creating an ecosystem of industrial, academic, and governmental partnerships that foster innovation and collaboration.
Visitors to the NARTP will tour the newly completed first building. Tours include the FAA laboratory space, the NARTP agile strategy lab powered by the New Jersey Innovation Institute, the state-of-the-art "Thunder Room" conferencing and distance-learning auditorium, and rooftop event space. Guests will also interact with and hear directly from tenant leadership about the NARTP mission, supported activities, and the Tech Center’s vision for the future as the park grows.
Go behind “The Red Brick Wall” and explore the FAA’s Air Traffic Management Automation (ATM) Decision Support Systems (DSS) laboratories. The laboratories are key ATM assets that are used to conduct test and evaluation on system software, hardware, operating systems, security, and network configurations for operational system releases to the field sites.
- The Traffic Flow Management System (TFMS) provides National Airspace System (NAS) real-time airspace volume and capacity metrics to all the Traffic Management Units. This allows for better aircraft flow in the NAS due to severe weather and high volume areas.
- The Time Based Flow Management (TBFM) provides Air Traffic Control metering capabilities for both arriving and departing aircraft across the en route and terminal domains.
- The Terminal Flight Data Manager (TFDM) has streamlined air traffic control tower surface movement areas. It facilitates more efficient and safer movement for aircraft at gates, taxiways, and runways.
Visitors to the DSS Laboratories will see the systems jointly planning and implementing traffic management initiatives (TMI) on the ground and in the air to mitigate demand and capacity imbalances across the NAS.
The U.S. aviation industry is a technologically sophisticated domain that constitutes a large part of the nation’s economy. It also comprises an essential sector of the nation’s transportation infrastructure. Consequently, aviation stands as a natural target for cyber-attacks. Hence, The FAA has made defending against and deflecting such attacks a priority at its Cybersecurity Test Facility (CyTF).
CyTF’s mission is to provide enterprise security evaluation and research services to strengthen the FAA’s digital information security in a research and development environment. To meet this mission, the CyTF supports FAA evaluations of cybersecurity capabilities and enhancements.
Visitors to the CyTF facility will be immersed in a cyber-operational scenario using state-of-the-art detection tools.
Cockpit Simulation Facility
The Cockpit Simulation Facility (CSF) maintains and operates a Boeing 737, an Airbus A320, a Sikorsky S76D and multiple general aviation flight simulators. The CSF also conducts research for the rotorcraft safety program.
Visitors to the CSF will see the newly completed S-76D rotorcraft simulation in operation and a TBO demonstration using the upgraded B737-MAX simulator.
Interested in learning more about what we talked about last year? Click below to view abstracts from Tech Center Tuesday 2018.