The sky’s the limit THE AUST LIAN ED­U­CA­TION RE­PORTER

“This project pro­vides a ter­rific path­way for stu­dents with a pas­sion for aero­nau­tics and en­gi­neer­ing.”

The Australian Education Reporter - - NEWS - EMMA DAVIES

LAUNCE­S­TON Church Gram­mar School stu­dents are set to build a sin­gle en­gine air­craft as part of their STEM pro­gram.

The full-size RV12 plane is a two seat, sin­gle en­gine, ready-to-fly air­craft man­u­fac­tured by Vans Air­craft in Ore­gon, USA, and will be sold for com­mer­cial use once com­plete.

“It’s an ex­cit­ing project, a re­ally quite ex­traor­di­nary project which not many stu­dents around the world have ever got the chance to do,” Head­mas­ter Richard Ford said.

“Our Sci­ence, Tech­nol­ogy, En­gi­neer­ing and Math­e­mat­ics pro­grammes pro­vide many op­por­tu­ni­ties for ac­cel­er­ated learn­ing and this project pro­vides a ter­rific path­way for stu­dents with a pas­sion for aero­nau­tics and en­gi­neer­ing.”

The school has quite a his­tory of aero­nau­tic alumni, with Sir Wil­mot Hud­son Fysh the founder of QAN­TAS, Cap­tain Vic­tor Clive Holy­man and Sir Ivan Nello Holy­man who founded the air­lines that would even­tu­ally be­come Ansett, and David War­ren AO, the in­ven­tor of the ‘black box’ flight data recorder all at­tend­ing the school.

“Avi­a­tion’s part of who we’ve al­ways been, and that’s still the case to­day,” Mr Ford said.

“We’ve got teach­ers here who like to build planes on the week­end, we’ve got stu­dents who’ve got their pi­lots li­cense that are al­ready fly­ing.”

Stu­dents will re­ceive teach­ing guid­ance from sev­eral staff mem­bers who have avi­a­tion ex­pe­ri­ence, as well as hav­ing ac­cess to Boe­ing test pi­lot, An­drew Can­gia, who is also a school par­ent.

Se­nior Cam­pus teacher and project co­or­di­na­tor Dr Cameron Rogers (PHD in Math­e­mat­ics) said the project was ex­pected to take about 1000 hours to com­plete – or be­tween one to two years – with many stu­dents coming on board to help.

“We are pri­ori­tis­ing stu­dents who have an ac­tive in­ter­est in avi­a­tion al­ready and let­ting in as many as we can,” Dr Rogers said.

“There are about 10,000 riv­ets in the aero­plane to put to­gether, so that should keep the stu­dents busy for a bit.”

He is also keen to fast-track the con­struc­tion time­line, and to se­cure a buyer which will help with fund­ing for the project.

“We’re also keen to hear from mem­bers of the pub­lic with avi­a­tion ex­pe­ri­ence who may be able to of­fer as­sis­tance so this is a truly com­mu­nity project,” Dr Roger said.

“This project pro­vides a ter­rific path­way for stu­dents with a pas­sion for aero­nau­tics and en­gi­neer­ing.”

Com­po­nents for the kit air­craft have ar­rived ready for con­struc­tion to be­gin.

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