William J. Hughes Technical Center

Atlantic City International Airport, NJ  08405




Tuesday, June 17, 2003

Contact:  Holly Baker

Telephone:  609/485-6253


     Technical Center Employees Win NASA Innovation Awards


Ralph Yost of Linwood, N.J., and Pete McHugh of Hampton, Va., are two winners of NASA’s Turning Goals into Reality awards for innovation. 


As part of the SATS (Small Aircraft Transportation System) Airborne Internet Team, they received the Mobility Award, one of six new technologies cited by NASA for their potentials for cleaner, quieter, safer, more affordable and more efficient air travel in the future.


NASA’s Office of Aerospace Technology presented the awards at the 2003 TGIR Conference in Williamsburg, VA.


The team developed a new communications, navigation and surveillance system that delivers aviation information services to aircraft and ground facilities as interconnected nodes on a high-speed digital communications network (like the Internet).  The system includes a client server with confirmed delivery notification, a robust high-capacity aviation information system for air traffic control and safety advisories, worldwide compatibility, seamless peer-to-peer connectivity, and high bandwidth and data rates.

Team members represented the FAA, NASA Langley and several companies.


The system is still in the research phase, but a prototype has been built and the concept has been proven.


McHugh is the FAA’s SATS program manager.  Yost is an electrical engineer at the technical center, and project lead for the research and advancement of the Airborne Internet.