Monday, December 21, 2020
University of Iowa Technology Institute

An in-flight photograph of one of the University of Iowa's Mi-2 helicopters earned first place in the helicopter category of the Iowa Department of Transportation's biennial Iowa Aviation photo contest for 2019-2020

The picture submitted by the UI Operator Performance Lab (OPL), shows the Mi-2 helicopter on a mission to test integrated sensor solutions to enhance flight safety in the Degraded Visual Environment (DVE), said Tom "Mach" Schnell, director and chief test pilot at the OPL and Captain Jim "Max" Gross Chair in the UI College of Engineering. The flight was performed during the technical workup for deployment to the Yuma Proving Ground as part of a U.S. Army/NATO flight test in brownout conditions, Schnell said.

OPL also earned first and second place in the most creative category in the Iowa DOT contest. The first place winner featured the UI Spirit Squad and mascot Herky positioned in formation in front of the two Mi-2 helicopters and an AV L-29 Delfin jet at OPL's hanger in Iowa City. The second place winner featured Herky seated in the L-29 at the hanger in Iowa City. These photographs were taken by UI photographer Justin Torner. 

OPL is part of the Iowa Technology Institute and owns two Mi-2 helicopters and two L-29s, which are all used for research.

Mi2 Helicopter
Iowa Spirit Squad and Herky at OPL
Herky in L29 Jet