NASA research plane visits Hunter
By Kevin LarsonJanuary 30, 2020
An unusual plane is calling Hunter Army Airfield home for the next few months.
On Jan. 15, NASA landed its ER-2 weather research airplane at Hunter. Pilots, scientists, and ground crew will call the installation home through March 1 while they fly missions to study east coast snow storms.
The ER-2 flew to Hunter from NASA's Palmdale facility. The aircraft is outfitted with various sensors to study the winter weather.
NASA will use the data collected over the two-month campaign studying snow-related weather to better predict and understand snow storms.
NASA research test pilot Tim Williams is one of the two pilots flying the ER-2 out of Hunter. He said the ER-2--NASA's version of the Air Force's U-2 spy plane--can fly up to 65,000 feet.
"We're pretty much over the entire atmosphere at that point," Williams "It's very similar to what a satellite can do.The difference between us and a satellite is we can bring the instrument down at the end of the day and work on it."
NASA chose Hunter for several reasons, including available hanger space and the weather in the Savannah area..
"Eventually this airplane has to come down and land," Williams said. "If we were up in New York state, I might have to land in that snow storm. And this airplane is not really good at that."
Hunter Army Airfield is no stranger to NASA missions; in the past, NASA identified the runway as an alternate landing site for the space shuttle.
- August 1, 2020Army National Guard to establish eight Divisions by aligning existing ARNG Division Headquarters with down-trace formations for training
- July 31, 2020COVID-19 didn’t stop 35th Annual Fort Riley 10-5-2 Prairie Run
- July 30, 202084th Training, Cadet Command Soldiers hone Best Warrior skills prior to higher level competitions
- July 29, 2020Brave Rifles Conduct Live Artillery Gun Raid Training
- July 29, 2020USAG Yongsan-Casey: AER slow-start no problem amid COVID-19
- July 28, 2020NASA Announces Astronauts to Fly on SpaceX Crew-2 Mission to Space Station
- July 27, 2020Texas National Guard Soldier gives back to her community
- July 26, 2020Montana Soldiers reflect on year in Poland
- July 23, 2020World War II-era warehouse at Richmond depot to get major overhaul
- July 23, 2020Behind the Scenes: Range Operations/MPRC
- July 22, 2020DEFENDER-Europe 2020 | Army Prepositioned Stock-2 Enables Dynamic Force Employment in Europe
- July 21, 2020JTL Tier II class sets precedent by graduating virtually with class project
- July 20, 2020Secretary of the Army appoints two new civilian aides
- July 17, 2020US Soldiers arrive in Poland for DEFENDER-Europe 20 Phase II