Axient Employee Tara Requist Gets Ride-along in ER-2 Chase in Support of AFRC’s ETSS Contract

ER-2 809 conducted pilot proficiency flights in Palmdale, California, on August 16, 2023. The Pilot in Command (PIC), “Coach,” simulated several proficiencies, such as an engine out and glide path in and various maneuvers with flaps. The chase vehicle, driven by fellow ER-2 pilot “Skirt,” showcased a team system with the grounded pilot serving as the eyes and ears. Skirt checks for foreign object debris (FOD) on the runway, surveys the airframe’s exterior before the flight, and assists Coach with landing due to his limited visibility. Axient’s Armstrong Flight Research Center (AFRC) Engineering and Technical Support Services (ETSS) employee, Tara Requist, accompanied Skirt in the chase vehicle on the Air Force runway at Plant 42. The ER-2 team wrapped the Airborne Lightning Observatory for Fly’s Eye GLM Simulator and Terrestrial gamma-ray flashes (ALOFT) mission last month after flying into thunderstorms. The next campaign will fly out of Palmdale and feature a new lineup of mission science instruments.