As of 9 Jun 99 TILTROTOR PILOTS HONORED WITH FEINBURG AWARD By Gidge Dady V-22 Public Affairs
NAVAL AIR STATION PATUXENT RIVER, Md. – A cadre of pilots who have pioneered the developmental test program for the revolutionary V-22 tiltrotor aircraft are this year’s recipients of the prestigious Frederick L. Feinberg Award.
The V-22 Integrated Test Team (ITT) pilot staff, comprised of Bell, Boeing, and government test pilots, received this honor at the American Helicopter Society awards banquet, May 26, in Montreal, Canada. Accepting the award on behalf of the team was Marty Shubert, Bell V-22 development test pilot.
“We're proud of the successes of the Engineering and Manufacturing, Development (EMD) program and the recent delivery of the production aircraft. This award comes at a fortuitous time for the team, as we are just about to wind-down the developmental testing efforts and see many of our pilots going elsewhere to either facilitate CV-22 (Air Force) testing or MV-22 (Marine Corps) fielding, “ said Shubert.
The Feinberg award recognizes the V-22 ITT pilot staff ‘s professionalism, experience, and their willingness to operate as an integrated contractor/customer development test team, all of which were critical to the ITT achieving major program milestones in 1998. Under significant flight test schedule pressure, V-22 test pilots safely completed envelope and structural expansion to the full specification requirement.
The award further cites specific achievements in the V-22 EMD program which include over 1300 flight hours on the four test airplanes, initial envelope development, external loads operations up to 220 knots (an unofficial new world record); mission systems development, operational test pilot training, austere landing zone operations, slope landings, aerial refueling, tactical formation, tactical insertion and extraction operations, low altitude tactical flight envelopment development, and expendables separation.
The award was established in 1960, in honor of the memory of Mr. Feinberg an outstanding helicopter pilot and exemplary person. It is presented annually to the helicopter pilot(s) who accomplish the most outstanding achievement during the preceding calendar year. Each of the pilots received an individual plaque and have their names engraved on the annual recipients’ plaque.
The pilots who earned this honor are part of the developmental test phase of the EMD program. They are: Lt. Col. John D. Rudzis (USMC – V-22 Government Flight Test Director), Maj. William J. Wainwright (USMC), Maj. Thomas P. Currie (USAF), Maj. William P. Witzig (USMC), Maj. Kevin L. Gross (USMC), Major Chris C. Seymour (USMC), Maj. Michael T. Healy (USAF), Thomas L. Macdonald (BoeingITT Chief Test Pilot), William A. Leonard (Bell Helicopter Textron-ITT Assistant Chief Test Pilot), James E Lindsey (Bell Helicopter Textron), William A. Norton (Boeing), Steven P. Grohsmeyer (Boeing), and Martin W. Shubert (Bell Helicopter Textron).