If we were in NM, we would be happy to assist!I am looking for the best amateur-built aircraft option that will provide high school students the opportunity to use aero industry manufacturing techniques. Because these are high school students with no experience, I need a project that small groups of students (groups of 2-4) can make a meaningful contributions to in the span of a semester class. The project also needs to come from a company that is very friendly and helpful. Here are some details with two specific questions below.
1) Give students excitement about working in the aero industry.
2) Give them confidence that they have the ability to work in the aero industry.
3) Give them some skills and experiences to help them be employable in the aero industry.
Desired skills/experiences (that I'd like my students to come away with):
1) AutoCAD experience drawing simple parts.
2) CNC experience cutting out parts (aluminum, carbon, plywood, ???) with plasma, route or laser CNCs)
3) 3-d printing experience fabricating misc. parts.
4) Experience on modern engines and components (glass cockpit components, Rotax 912, turboprop, jet, ???)
5) Experience with modern construction techniques (carbon and fiberglass composites, ???)
1) Students need take very small steps. On average, the kids can do in a week what it would take you 15 minutes.
2) Students need to see progress. Despite limitation 1, the project needs to have some momentum, so I'm automatically thinking a kit, but... ???
3) Needs to be "cool". The better this thing looks on a poster, the more enthusiasm it will gain.
4) Company (if a kit is involved) will need to field an above-average number of questions and assistance from students.
1) What other skills/experiences should a high school graduate get to be better suited to enter the aero technical field or continuing with post secondary education (i.e. aero engineering).
2) In your opinion, what aircraft project will suit itself to this effort?