At the National Research Council’s Flight Research Lab, a Carleton co-op student brought Canadian flight safety to new heights. This remarkable contribution has earned him the distinction of Carleton University’s Undergraduate Co-op Student of the Year.
The winner, third-year Aerospace Engineering student Bradley Jung, worked in the Flight Recorder Playback Centre – a Transport Canada accredited aircraft maintenance facility where flight recorder systems – or black boxes – are analyzed.
Jung developed a computer program that constructs a path estimate using the aircraft’s heading, attitude and wind data – this is called ‘`dead reckoning.’’ This path is then used by engineers in the reconstruction of an aircraft accident. The user can pick the corresponding 3D aircraft and the entire scenario can be recreated using X-Plane or Google Earth.
In one incident, Jung’s supervisor Patrick Zdunich was using two different software packages on separate computers to reconcile a dead-reckoned path. After discussing the problem with his co-op student, Jung had the problem solved by the next day and the program revised to eliminate the iteration.
The newly revised program has already been used in two high-profile incidents, resulting in the Lab’s ability to deliver crash results and analyses quicker.
“Bradley was a truly exceptional co-op student – not just the top one per cent but the very best I’ve seen in the last five years,” said Zdunich.
Jung also worked on creating a Windows application that grabbed flight data from the black box to recreate the scenario in Google Earth or X-Plane.
Carleton University also awarded master’s student Tatiana Nesviginsky with the first Graduate Co-op Student of the Year Award. The International Affairs major worked at the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade as a co-op student for one year.
Working for the International Scholarships Program in the International Education and Youth Division, Nesviginsky was assigned the monumental task of working on the templates for grant and contribution agreements and had to learn the complex end-to-end process of creating legally binding agreements for use by DFAIT to award scholarship funds to Canadian colleges, universities and researchers.
Thanks in large part to Nesviginsky’s commitment to the project, the program successfully awarded approximately 600 student scholarships for study in Canada last fall.
“I highly recommend the co-op program to any Carleton University student, as it bolsters the quality of one’s resumé and career development,” said Nesviginsky. “Co-op should not stand for co-operative education, but for: ‘Can Offer Other Possibilities!’”
Honourable mention goes to Communication Studies major Nelson Furtado for his outstanding contribution to the Edu-Canada program at the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade.