Russ Professor Emeritus of Electrical Engineering Richard H. McFarland founded the Avionics Engineering Center in 1963. Since that time he has been successful in initiating projects for such sponsors as the FAA, NASA, the U.S. Air Force, industrial organizations, and numerous airport commissions and design groups. He holds a B.S. from Ohio University, and an M.S. and Ph.D. in electrical engineering from The Ohio State University.
Dr. McFarland has been active continually in engineering research and development relating to air navigation and landing systems. He pioneered development of mathematical models for predicting performance of Instrument Landing System (ILS) components in the presence of multipath interference. As a part of this work, he has performed many analyses and collected the most extensive data available on ILS performance with ground plane snow covers. His areas of instruction have been electromagnetic fields and antennas.
An active pilot, he holds airline transport pilot and flight instructor certificates with a DC-3 type rating, is qualified for Category II landing operations in a Beechcraft 36, and is rated as a flight instructor for single- and multi-engine aircraft and for instrument flight. He has more than 18,000 hours as pilot in command.
He is a Fellow in the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers.
He is a member of Tau Beta Pi, Phi Beta Kappa, Eta Kappa Nu, and Sigma Xi and other societies. He is, also, a member of the American Society of Enginering Education and the National Association of Flight Instructors.
In 1989 he was awarded the FAA's Distinguished Service Medal for his career-long work in ILS. In 1989 Aviation Week provided him with their Laurel Award for his ILS work. In 1997 the FAA presented him with their Excellence in Aviation award for his work as Principal Investigator in their Joint University Program.