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History

The Ohio University Avionics Engineering Center specializes in the research, development, and evaluation of electronic navigation, communication, and surveillance systems.

Established in 1963 by the late Richard McFarland, the center was created to support a unique combination of theoreticians, subject matter experts and technical specialists who could address navigational issues encountered in air transportation and supply immediate, practical solutions. Originally housed in a collection of buildings atop Radar Hill on the south end of campus (now part of The Ridges complex), the center was formed as the Avionics Research Group within Ohio University’s Department of Electrical Engineering. In 2004, the center relocated much of its research and training operations to the Richard H. McFarland Avionics Building, featuring 12,000 square feet of office, laboratory, and conference space on the grounds of the Ohio University Airport about 10 miles south of the Athens campus.

The last 50 years of Dr. McFarland’s legacy have yielded remarkable results. Current research projects, including enhanced operations in low visibility conditions, Local Area Augmentation Systems, and Automatic Dependent Surveillance - Broadcast, create for good by sustaining and improving safety, navigation and communication in air transportation.