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Summary of the 25th SFTE EC Annual symposium

Luleå, Sweden (2014-06-15/18)
Written by Christian Buck

The 25th SFTE EC Annual Symposium took place from June 15 through 18 at the hotel Clarion Sense in Luleå. The symposium’s theme was Testing Together and all of the papers addressed this, some more than others dependent on the specific topic of the paper.

Group picture of participants who made it to the Technical Tour at Vidsel

This year's symposium was special for SFTE European Chapter since it was co-hosted together with Society of Experimental Test Pilots European Section.

The symposium was a great success with more than 150 participants from many nations all over the world.

Welcome Reception
The symposium kicked off Sunday evening with a Welcome Reception at the ninth floor bar at Hotel Clarion Sense. Each participant got their name badge and dispatch case and enjoyed some snacks and drinks during the welcome greetings. The participants mingle continued while everyone was bathed in the midnight sun.

Technical Tour
This year's technical tour was hosted by FMV and the Vidsel Test Range. Vidsel has Europe's largest overland test area. Vidsel demonstrated driverless target vehicles on ground that is used for testing of new targeting systems and weapons or for training of personnel. Aerial targeting drones where displayed and everyone got a chance to visit the drone workshop.
A visit to the Vidsel historic museum gave insight to significant events and major programs that has used the test range.

Visit to the spectacular Storforsen

Lunch was served around camp fires in the woods close to Storforsen. Storforsen is a rapid in Pite River and has a water flow of 870 m3/s around midsummer. The main course was traditional "renskav" which is thin slices of reindeer meat.

Saab sponsored an opportunity for everyone to be flown to (or from) Vidsel in a Saab 2000. The active noise cancellation system was demonstrated.

A surprise Gripen Air Display, flown by the air force Wing 21, was really spectacular and exclusive for the symposium.

Technical Sessions

SFTE EC president Christian Buck welcomes everyone to the Technical Sessions

The technical sessions where held in the conference floor at Hotel Clarion Sense.

The conference rooms where well adapted for the symposium, which this year had presentations in parallel sessions.

A total of 23 presentations were made and as usual there where a lot of experience and lessons learned that where explained and shared.

This year a Best in Session award was selected from each session due to the nature of having parallel sessions.

The Best in Session went to:
Karl-Heinz Mai for the presentation AVOID – The story of a successful ‘Testing Together’ Flight Test Trial
Hannes Rotering and Stefan Ritter for the presentation Eurofighter Typhoon Air Data Testing Challenges, Techniques and Lessons Learned
Claus Dalum for the presentation Lynx One Engine Inoperative (OEI) testing during hot weather SHOL or “What do we do when we lose an engine on a hot sunny day with no wind?”
Christian Worning for the presentation Enhanced Frequency and Bias Inputs (eFBI), A great new Eurofighter flight test tool and it’s price
Mike Bromfield for the presentation An Innovative Approach to Flight Test Using Digital Multi-Media Technologies

Nordic Evening
Saab sponsored a Nordic Event on Tuesday evening and night. A one hour boat trip took everyone to "Blåvikens Havsbad" in the Luleå archipelago. Despite the chilly temperature the scenery, food and entertainment made everyone have a good time. All were warmed by the surprise display of a Saab B17 flown by Johan Sjöstrand.

The Banquet was held at the Elite hotel grand ballroom in Luleå. Honoured guest speakers were Håkan Buskhe, president and CEO of Saab, and Micael Bydén, Commander of the Swedish Air Force. Speeches from the societies and the Best in Session award ceremony took place in between the dishes of the Nordic themed dinner.

The Banquet at the Elite hotel Grand Ballroom

Thanks to our sponsors Saab, FMV and the Swedish Airforce the SFTE European Chapter together with SETP European Section managed to host a successful symposium in Luleå, far away from the organizers "home base" in Linköping.