Four Airplanes To Compete For NASA Efficiency Prize
This weekend in Sonoma, Calif., four airplanes will compete for $250,000 in prize money from NASA, which will be awarded for qualities that are sought after for the personal air vehicle (PAV) of the future. The PAV Challenge offers prizes for quiet operation, ease of handling, short-runway performance, fuel efficiency, and speed. The goal of the competition is to encourage the development of aircraft that can provide reliable, everyday transportation for the masses with ease and efficiency. The four aircraft in the competition include a modified RV-4, two Slovenian-built Pipistrels, and a Cessna 172. The contest is run for NASA by the Comparative Aircraft Flight Efficiency (CAFE) Foundation. "The intent of the PAV Challenge is to encourage innovation in the amateur and sporting aviation communities to help enhance the general aviation transportation system," said Dr. J. Victor Lebacqz, NASA's Associate Administrator for the Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate. "This prize competition is a great follow-on to previous NASA investments in small aircraft and complements existing industry consortia in general aviation." NASA has predicted that the technologies targeted by this competition will have a quick and positive impact on the general aviation industry and on public air travel.