On February 4th 2011, Â NLR’s general director, Michel Peters, presented the 2010 Spee Award to Frans van Schaik, who was awarded thisÂ prize for his contributions to the field of Air Traffic Management (ATM) and for his outstanding teaching abilities.
At NLR, Van Schaik leads programmes focused on innovative ATM and ATM education. Moreover, he is a senior expert in the field of A-SMGCS (Advanced Surface Movement Guidance and Control Systems), which involves controlling and guiding the movements of aircraft while they are on the ground. This involves for example ensuring that, in times of poor visibility, the aircraft do not collide with one another or takeoff from taxing lanes rather than the regular takeoff and landing runways.
It was partly owing to Van Schaik that NLR won important contracts with airports in Taiwan and Luxemburg. Speaking during the award ceremony, Professor Henk Tijdeman (NLR advisory board and chairman of the jury) said: ‘I told him that the people in Taiwan were so impressed with his knowledge and professionalism that he was reverently addressed as professor!Â
Van Schaik has anÂ impressive number ofÂ publications to his name. In addition, he delights in teaching ATM at Delft University of Technology.
The award is named for Ben Spee, who from 1988 tot 2001 served as the NLR’s general director. The award is presented once per calendar year to an NLR staff member who has made on outstanding scientific contribution.