2015 US Aviation Tour Report: Day 1, Visit Dr. Johnson Lab. of Georgia TechSeptember 13, 2015


 We planned and carried out a study tour of various important sites for the US aerospace industry (9/13-18/2015, self-funded). This tour was intended for U-Tokyo students who wanted to learn about the aerospace industry other than from their studies, and those interested in an internship or career in the aerospace industry or abroad.
 On the first day of the aviation tour, we visited Dr. Eric Johnson's laboratory in Georgia Institute of Technology. Dr. Johnson specializes in integrated avionics of UAVs, ranging from 3-meter class unmanned helicopters to lightweight quadcopters whose size is about that of a laptop. We were able to enter a large workshop where the UAVs and its avionics were developed.
 His research topics include air-to-air tracking of an aircraft by vision and technology to better control of a package hanged from a helicopter. Avionics for these technologies are installed onto unmanned airplanes and helicopters in the lab and tested at a field off campus, since the equipment is quite large. It is notable that these technologies are developed with real-life applications in mind. More recently, he developed an indoors exploration system which is solely dependent on computer onboard the aircraft. This research was highly evaluated in the field of indoors flight and he was awarded prizes in numerous competitions. I believe this is because he goes beyond the requirements of competition and builds devices that are truly useful for real applications.
 As much as the software inside, I was impressed by his ability to create new devices, like the indoors exploration quadcopter, to prove these highly advanced technologies. It was a great opportunity for us to learn about engineering design, and I would like to thank Dr. Johnson for providing us a wonderful time.

工学部航空宇宙工学科 学部4年 黒木翔太 (Shota Kuroki)