RELEASE NO. 99-002
TUESDAY, JAN. 19
Speaker to discuss how satellites are sparking a revolution in
It used to be that pilots got the navigational information they
needed by talking with air traffic controllers and paying attention
to the blinking runway lights. Increasingly, however, the flying
public is getting where it's going through cutting-edge
technologies that even make use of outer space.
Orbiting satellites are beaming location information directly
into airplane cockpits, and high-speed digital-data communications
are advising pilots of weather and air traffic conditions.
This revolution in flight will be discussed by aviation
authority Cary R. Spitzer at 2 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 19, at NASA
Langley's H.J.E Reid Conference Center.
According to Spitzer, many aircraft operators and nations are
beginning to use a new system called Communications Navigation
Surveillance for Air Traffic Management (CNS/ATM) to improve air
safety and capacity and reduce operating costs.
Spitzer will discuss how NASA Langley and other organizations
have developed and demonstrated CNS/ATM technologies and
procedures. The talk will also review the technologies involved,
the anticipated benefits, and its international status.
Spitzer joined NASA Langley after serving in the Air Force.
During his last tenure at NASA, he focused on avionics.
Before recently retiring from Langley, Spitzer managed a joint
NASA/Honeywell program that led to the first satellite-guided
automatic landing of a passenger airplane. He also led a project to
define the requirements for an aircraft that could be used for
flight research. Today that aircraft is NASA Langley's "flying
laboratory, " an extensively modified Boeing 757 known as ARIES, or
Airborne Research Integrated Experiments System.
A media briefing will be held at 1:15 p.m. in the Wythe Room of
the Reid Conference Center, 14 Langley Blvd. in Hampton. Media who
wish to attend the briefing should contact Kimberly Land at (757)
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