Captain Hugues Van Der Stitchl opened the 2017 lecture programme with a packed audience to learn about the Airbus A350 Flight Test Campaign. Full auditoriums and lecture halls are now the norm and a new registration process had been introduced to manage these events.
The Annual Dinner was another roaring success, with not one but 5 RAF Red Arrows Acrobatic Team members, led by Red One, Dave “Monty” Monetenegro.
Before Christmas, John Vincent discussed the challenges of finding and keeping the next generation of aviation professionals and of course we had our Christmas Quiz, which was fully subscribed in two days.
The new year was launched with the Airbus A350-1000 field trip which was another hit with the members. Boeing then supported the next two lectures with Boeing 777X Connectivity presented by Tim Antsey, followed by B787: The most innovative and efficient airplane in the sky, from Chris Tasche, though Airbus may disagree!
Bob Bell, from Renault Sports, shared his inspiring stories of the aerodynamic modifications behind the success of different F1 teams. We switched theme to business jets, where Brett Rundle talked about the latest flight deck innovations on the Gulfstream G500. William Shum and Patrick Donnellan, capped of the year with how the HK Observatory supports HK aviation, and all the new technologies inside the latest GE9X which will support the next generation Boeing 777X.
The Chairman thanked the Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Aviation Services Research Centre, for supporting this year’s AGM.
Finally, the Chairman expressed his thanks to the committee for their hard work and dedication, and the members for making the branch a success.
Two of our signature events, Aviation Quiz and Aero Challenge, have further their success last term in a way that both of them have been filled to capacity in two days thanks to the penetration of our Facebook page. We were pleased to see they have also brought in some new members.
We were seeing more participants joining Aviation Quiz as a preparation for their cadet pilot programme application. This is a pretty good sign for us as we not only attract engineering professionals but also pilots or pilots to be. Participants were so happy to have Cathay Boeing 747 classic plane models as the prizes last year. We again have to take this chance to send our gratitude to Hong Kong Express because of their consecutive sponsorship.
Aero Challenge – Design, Build and Fly were held in March this year and has become even more exciting since we have brought flying to a new level. Participants were asked to design and build a glider and/or a propeller plane, flying through two obstacles and landing them at a designated landing area. Only the winner of this year could make it so they really deserved to be the champion this year. Another break-through we have made this year was the involvement of a team of students from a local primary school, serving as one of their STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) projects. We are also grateful to Hong Kong Dragon Airlines, who sponsored a simulator session for our champions, Infinity.