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Dec. 6, 1999

Michael Mewhinney

NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, CA

(Phone: 650/604-3937, 650/604-9000)

mmewhinney@mail.arc.nasa.gov


NOTE TO EDITORS: 99-79AR

NEWS MEDIA INVITED TO TOUR NEW VIRTUAL AIRPORT CONTROL TOWER

On Friday, Dec. 10, news media are invited to tour, film and photograph NASA's new "FutureFlight Central," the world's first full-scale virtual airport control tower. Reporters will also have the opportunity to conduct interviews of key facility personnel from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. (PST). A formal ribbon-cutting ceremony for the facility will be held on Monday, Dec. 13, at 9:00 a.m. (PST) with guest registration starting at 8:30 a.m. (PST).

Located at NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, CA, FutureFlight Central is designed to test -- under realistic airport conditions and configurations -- ways to combat potential air and runway traffic problems at commercial airports.

In addition to being able to film and photograph the facility's interior, including a 360-degree simulation of San Francisco International Airport in the tower cab, news media may interview FutureFlight Central Facility Manager Nancy Dorighi and other facility personnel. News media should stop by the Visitor Badging Office, located at the main gate, Moffett Federal Airfield, to obtain visitor passes needed to gain entry.

Constructed at a cost of $10 million, the two-story facility was jointly funded by NASA's Advanced Air Transportation Technologies Office and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). The facility is dedicated to the memory of Stanton R. Harke, the facility's first project manager, who passed away on April 25, 1999 at the age of 58 following an 18-month battle with cancer.


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Daniel, Mann, Johnson & Mendenhall, Moffett Field, CA, served as project engineers. Other project partners include Oracle Corp., Redwood Shores, CA, and SGI, Mountain View, CA. Representatives from the FAA's air traffic control supervisors committee and the National Air Traffic Controller's Association, as well as the Air Transport Association, participated in all phases of the facility's design.

The general URL for FutureFlight Central is:

http://ffc.arc.nasa.gov

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