SAE Aero Design Validation Events Merger

1/20/2021 12:47:29 PM   SAE Aero Design Series

Dear SAE Aero Design Competitors,

SAE International staff met with key volunteers from our Aero Design Organizing Committee on Friday, January 8, 2021 to discuss the planned Validation Events we are hosting in March and April.

The discussion was focused on reviewing the current situations facing each of the Validation Events logistics. Upon review of this information, a decision was made to postpone the Validation Events versus risk cancellation.

To give all registered teams the best chance to participate onsite, the following has been decided:

  • SAE will combine both Validation Events into one location into ONE event
  • Event Date: June 4 – 6, 2021.
  • Location: Lakeland, Florida
  • Classes Invited: All three classes
  • New Payment Deadline: April 5th
  • New Document Submission: '2021 Validation June Confirmation – Notice of Intent' document has been added to the Knowledge event required document submissions and is due on Wednesday, January 27th.

With the change in the Validation Event dates, we will also be streamlining the www.sae.org and www.saeaerodesign.com websites for both Knowledge and Validation Events. Please ignore all current deadlines and refrain from uploading any required submissions at this time.


Forthcoming Changes:

  • Original March and April Validation Events will be merged into one website for the June Validation Event.
  • Assigned team numbers from the Knowledge Event will be applied to teams competing in June Validation Event ensuring more accuracy for student teams and volunteers pertaining to submissions and scoring.
  • Deadlines for design paper submissions will be pushed to March 1st for all teams competing in Knowledge Event.
  • Document Submissions area will begin to be updated soon for all teams competing in both Knowledge and Validation Events.
  • All judging of oral presentations will take place starting in March; definitive dates will be updated online under SAE Aero Design Knowledge Event.

ACTION REQUIRED: We understand this change may provide an additional challenge to teams who end their academic year in the May/June time-frame and so we have created in your document submission area a new required submission that we are asking you to complete. You can download the 2021 Validation June Confirmation – Notice of Intent template directly by clicking here. Please have your team complete the template and submit to SAE via document submission process on the Knowledge Event no later than Wednesday, January 27th before 11:59:59 PM ET.

Again, all teams please refrain from uploading all other required submissions. Teams competing in Validation Events only, need to submit the 2021 Validation June Confirmation template. Template captures Yes and No responses.


Situations we currently still face with less than 2 months before SAE Aero Design Season:

  • The COVID-19 vaccination has not been distributed largely enough to provide “herd immunity” in either state.
  • CDC and local government restrictions on social gathering sizes less than 10 people still exist for event locations; in addition, California also requires a mandatory 14-day quarantine upon arrival to the state.
  • Company employers for volunteers and sponsors are still prohibiting travel and have imposed bans on volunteering outside the organization.
  • Approximately 60% of teams registered for Aero Design East are facing a university-imposed travel restriction or cannot enter the United States. Payment for this event is due and less than half the teams have committed.
  • Payment for Aero Design West teams is due February 8th but already we have received a few emails about withdrawing due to the travel bans still being imposed in April.

SAE and Event Organizers will continue to make every effort to ensure student teams get a chance to fly their student-built planes in 2021. We appreciate the teams understanding as we navigate the changes. Please if you have any questions feel free to contact SAE at [email protected].