Clemson researchers help make runways safer

Clemson student researchers reassemble the mobile drill press. Photo by Gregory Mocko

Researchers at Clemson University in South Carolina recently redesigned and modified a mobile drill press to retrofit a section of a runway that halts overrun aircraft, ultimately minimizing aircraft damage and injury to pilots and passengers.

The process of retrofitting the end of a runway at Greenville Downtown Airport (GMU) required more than 80,000 holes to be drilled in the concrete. Officials at Pace Pavement Technologies recognized that manually drilling the holes was not an option and there needed to be a more efficient and accurate way to drill.

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