Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) has announced that it will be replacing its Wright Brothers Wind Tunnel, now 79 years old, with a new facility that will become the most advanced and largest academic wind tunnel in the United States.
Aerospace giant Boeing has been named as the lead donor of the project, having offered up $18mn towards its construction – a continuation of the firm’s partnership with MIT that has had a significant impact upon the aerospace industry.
“Few relationships in aerospace can compare to the ties between MIT and Boeing.” said Greg Hyslop, Chief Technology Officer and Senior Vice President of Boeing Engineering and Test Technology. “We’re thrilled and gratified to be part of this critically important renovation that will launch our relationship into the second century of aerospace.”
The facility will be developed by the MIT Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics, retaining the name of the Wright Brothers Wind Tunnel.
“The new Wright Brothers Wind Tunnel will present MIT with a state-of-the-art research and teaching tool for many years to come,” says AeroAstro Department Head, Jaime Peraire. “We greatly appreciate Boeing’s generosity and commitment to future generations of aerospace engineers and their research.”
The new wind tunnel will be constructed on the sight of the old one, with the MIT Museum set to preserve a number of artefacts from the 1938 tunnel in order to retain some of its history.