Thanks to the boundless enthusiasm of “Landspeed Louise” Noeth, U.S. Air Force Academy engineering students and their faculty have agreed to work with amateur racers on land speed related projects. Up to 20 cadets enrolled in Automotive Systems Analysis as part of the Academy’s Mechanical Engineering degree program will work individually or in teams to solve a racing-related problem, develop or improve a vehicle sub-system or perform racing related analysis. Their involvement in challenging real-world problems is expected to enhance their learning.
For participating land speed racers – who will provide the labor and parts – the program means their vehicles will benefit from the Academy’s know-how and research and development facilities. The school has two wind tunnels, machine shops, engine and chassis dynamometers, solid modeling, modeling software and Computational Fluid Dynamics among its resources.
As for “Landspeed Louise,” she says the collaboration will bring her “not one thin dime.” But the author of “Bonneville Salt Flats, The Fastest Place on Earth” hopes it will bring the world’s land speed record to the U.S. (“Where it belongs,” she opines.) British race teams, she notes, are assisted by their nation’s military in preparing for assaults on the salt and they have repeatedly set top marks.
In the process of updating her definitive book about Bonneville for the University of Utah’s 2014 celebration of 100 years of racing on the unique site, she became acquainted with Lt. Colonel Richard Buckley of the Air Force Academy’s Department of Engineering Mechanics and his desire to provide exciting practical problems to intensify cadets’ learning.
The two of them devised the program and another advanced program starting in August 2013. For more information on either program, contact :