ABC-TV cancels pilot safety story originally slated for Jan. 17

ABC-TV cancels pilot safety story originally slated for Jan. 17

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NASA-funded work focuses on hands-on flying for safety
Schnell is shown flying plane above farm fields.Photo caption: Principal investigator and commercial pilot Tom Schnell will conduct tests during 2014 aimed at improving pilot skills during potential emergency situations. Video was shot by David Gamradt and Brian Gilbert.

Update: Producers of ABC-TV's "20/20" have decided that the story about NASA-funded University of Iowa pilot research will not air Friday, Jan. 17, on "20/20. However, the story may be scheduled to air at a future date on "ABC World News with Diane Sawyer."

Original story: University of Iowa research aimed at making air travel safer is the focus of a story scheduled to air between 9 and 10 p.m. (CST) Friday, Jan. 17 during ABC-TV's "20/20."

The story tells how a NASA-funded study being conducted at the UI is aimed at preparing pilots who may someday be involved in an emergency situation to rely less on automated flight systems, which can cause confusion, and more on hands-on piloting skills.

Video for the piece was shot by David Gamradt and Brian Gilbert, UI video staff, and features the flight and research skills of Tom Schnell, project principal investigator, associate professor of mechanical and industrial engineering, and director of the Operator Performance Laboratory in the UI College of Engineering's Center for Computer-Aided Design.

The original UI "Iowa Now" story about the research project can be found at: UI develops test aircraft systems to make air travel safer.


Gary Galluzzo, University Communication and Marketing, 319-384-0009


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