Follow this link to skip to                                      the main content


Text Size

Elvia H. Thompson
Headquarters, Washington
(Phone: 202/358-1696)

Katherine K. Martin
Glenn Research Center, Cleveland
(Phone: 216/433-2406)

October 3, 2005
RELEASE : 05-291
NASA Develops New Online De-Icing Training Course for Pilots
With winter approaching, NASA is providing pilots with a way to help them avoid the hazards of ice contamination while their planes are on the ground.

NASA developed "A Pilot's Guide to Ground Icing." It's a free, online course intended primarily for professional pilots who make their own deicing and anti-icing decisions. It's the eighth in a series of training aids developed at NASA's Glenn Research Center, Cleveland, and the first about ground icing.

Tom Bond, chief of Glenn's Icing Branch, said, "The pilot community has asked for training materials to cover the full spectrum of icing concerns. Ground icing training complements our past work for in-flight icing training. NASA worked with an international group of aviation safety specialists from both regulatory and industry organizations to develop a training tool to aid pilots across international borders."

This new educational tool was developed by an international team led by NASA researchers. The team included experts from NASA's Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, Calif.; the Federal Aviation Administration; Transport Canada; Civil Aviation Authority in the United Kingdom; Canadian Armed Forces; the University of Oregon; a fractional jet provider and an airline.

This self-guided course provides pilots with general ground icing knowledge; an understanding of freezing precipitation hazards; and the ability to improve decision making in ground icing operations. It discusses the risks of contamination; provides cues to alert the pilot to ground icing conditions; and offers actions pilots can take to help ensure safe operations. Imagery, case studies, aviator testimonials and interactive elements are used to inform and help pilots make better operational decisions.

Ground icing accidents are often preventable. Pilots can receive training to improve the safety of their flights by using this online course.

"We are committed to supporting NASA's goal to improve aviation safety. By helping pilots and operators understand the hazards of ground and in-flight aircraft icing, they can make better operational decisions," said Dr. Judith Van Zante, icing researcher with QSS Group, Inc., Cleveland. She was a team member at Glenn, and she was instrumental in developing the course.

The activity was supported by NASA's Aviation Safety and Security Program Office, Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate.

Previous training aids developed at Glenn focused on in-flight icing for various target pilot audiences, including: Icing for Regional and Corporate Pilots; Icing for General Aviation Pilots; A Pilot's Guide to In-Flight Icing; Tailplane Icing; Supercooled Large Droplet Icing.

The new Pilot's Guide to Ground Icing course is available on the Web at:

For information about Glenn's icing safety work on the Web, visit:

For information about NASA's Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate on the Web, visit:


- end -

text-only version of this release

NASA press releases and other information are available automatically by sending a blank e-mail message to To unsubscribe from this mailing list, send a blank e-mail message to

Back to NASA Newsroom | Back to NASA Homepage