Transportation Dept. launches aviation test lab with NASA

Transportation Dept. launches aviation test lab with NASA
© Getty Images

NASA and the Department of Transportation launched a new aviation test lab at Charlotte Douglas International Airport on Friday in an effort to streamline air arrival, reduce congestion in the skies and improve aviation safety.
 

ADVERTISEMENT

The initiative is the next major step in the administration’s rollout of a satellite-based “NextGen” system to improve the nation’s air traffic control.

The five-year pilot project in Charlotte, N.C., will attempt to streamline the arrival and departure of aircraft while enhancing operations to bolster safety.

The initiative will provide coordinated schedules between the ramp, tower, terminal and center control facilities, which will give air traffic controllers better tools to make decisions.

It also will aim to reduce fuel use in the nation’s aviation system, with NASA predicting that green aviation efforts could save the commercial airline industry $255 billion over the next 25 years.

"Imagine being able to spend less time pushing back from the gate, taxiing to the runway and taking off,” said NASA Administrator Charles Bolden on Friday. "The work that will be accomplished in this demonstration lab could be a game changer in terms of reducing airport congestion, which is good for passengers and for business. It’s also good for the environment, as engines spend less time running on the ground."

The project comes in anticipation of the 4 billion increase in passengers expected to be traveling globally over the next 20 years.

“Today is a great moment for the city of Charlotte, for air travelers, and our environment,” said Transportation Secretary Anthony FoxxAnthony Renard FoxxBig Dem names show little interest in Senate Lyft sues New York over new driver minimum pay law Lyft confidentially files for IPO MORE, a former Charlotte mayor. “As a son of this city and this state with its special history with modern flight, I’m thrilled that Charlotte Douglas International Airport is at the forefront of this innovative partnership between DOT and NASA that will have a transformative and lasting impact on aviation.”