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Engineering students soar in aircraft competition

2:01 PM  Feb 14th, 2012
by Maggie Malach '11, photo by Larry Burgess

Almost a year later, two Flyers received the trophy recognizing their success in an international aircraft design competition.

Last spring, John Puttmann ’10 and Brian Cranston ’10 traveled to England to present their two-seat electric airplane at the IT FLIES UK competition. Traveling with them were Andrew McClinton ’13, Eric Fuerst ’13 and Brian Walsh ’13, who submitted their design for the C130 Hercules military transport plane that won first place in the IT FLIES USA competition.

Each team was responsible for explaining its design to pilots from the Royal Air Force, who then tested it. The judging was based on the accuracy with which the plane flew.

About a dozen teams participated, but it was Puttmann and Cranston’s conceptual plane that received top honors. The duo started planning the aircraft over a year ago in fall 2010.

“I’m very proud of the students,” said Tony Saliba, dean of the School of Engineering. “They represented the University very well. To go overseas and compete against other teams is a real tribute to their efforts, but also to the well-rounded education they are receiving here.”

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