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Supersonic Tunnel Association, International

Information for Prospective Members

The Supersonic Tunnel Association was formed in 1954 to bring together engineers and scientists working in the then-new technology of high-speed wind tunnel testing. ("International" was added in 1996 to better reflect the current worldwide makeup of the organization). The original, and still primary, purpose of the organization is the sharing of information concerning facility operation, instrumentation and test techniques. More recently, the scope has broadened to include compressible fluid mechanics research outside the more traditional areas of wind tunnel testing. From the beginning, we have believed that sound personal relationships are a valuable foundation for technical communication, and our meetings offer the opportunity to meet and to interact personally with our peers worldwide.

The STAI is a very informal organization which is not incorporated and has no assets or legal status. There are no fees or assessments, and meeting costs are defrayed by a registration fee for each attendee. There is, however, an STAI CONSTITUTION, a copy of which accompanies this article. (The Constitution was most recently revised in May, 2009). Two principles are specified in the Constitution which are central to our philosophy and to which we adhere rigorously. The first of these, which is intended to assure the vitality of the STAI, requires that a representative from each member organization shall attend a meeting, and submit a technical contribution, at least once within a period covering two consecutive meetings. (These responsibilities for attendance and presentation are usually, but not necessarily, satisfied at the same meeting). And secondly, to assure the integrity of the STAI and to maintain an environment conducive to the free and open exchange of information, the unsolicited marketing of equipment or services by any member to any other member(s) at STAI meetings is prohibited

Two meetings are held each year, usually in May and October. Member organizations serve as host on a voluntary, rotating basis. The host organization is responsible for all meeting arrangements, and registration fees to cover meeting costs typically have been between $600 AND $700 (US) per person in recent years. A majority of meetings have been held in the United States, but meetings also have been held in all continents where member organizations reside. Please refer to the STAI MEETING SCHEDULE for recent and future meeting venues and dates. We seek to maintain a geographical balance in the selection of meeting sites in an attempt to distribute, as equitably as possible, the costs associated with travel to meetings. Generally meetings take place on a Monday through Wednesday, with registration and a reception being held on the Sunday evening. Typically a day and a half is devoted to technical sessions and at least a half-day is allocated for a tour of the host organization's facilities. As a courtesy to others, smoking is not permitted during the technical sessions or other organized group activities such as luncheons or banquets.

Oral presentations are relatively brief, typically fifteen or twenty minutes plus time for questions and discussion. Written papers in support of the presentation may be, and are strongly encouraged to be, considerably more detailed. Each contributor is asked to provide an electronic version of his/her paper to be assembled into Proceedings by the host, and distributed to all the members. Proceedings are mailed by the host organization to those members not in attendance. Papers are distributed only to STAI members in good standing, and are not to be referenced in other publications (outside STAI). This restriction is intended to encourage the reporting of preliminary results from work in progress, the sharing of information not completely understood, and discussions of problems not yet solved. Presentations and papers are in English.

Applications for membership are judged by the applicant organization's ability to make useful contributions to the STAI, with primary consideration being given to the quality of the applicant's facilities and the technical quality of the work being performed. Applicants are required to submit information concerning their facilities and the work being performed for evaluation against these standards. There are no geographic limitations placed on membership.

An applicant organization is also required to submit a letter from a responsible official formally requesting membership, agreeing to abide by the STAI Constitution, and in particular agreeing to support the STAI's requirements for meeting attendance and technical contributions. This letter should come from someone within the organization with budget control and authority to approve travel to meetings and time spent on preparation of technical contributions, and who would, therefore, be ultimately responsible for the organization meeting its obligations to the STAI.

After a formal request for membership has been received and favorably evaluated by the Executive Committee, the applicant normally will be invited to send a representative to the next convenient regular STAI meeting to make a presentation about his or her facilities and technical work, and to answer questions. The application is then voted on by the membership as specified in the Constitution.

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FCAAP Officials:
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