Improvements at Huntington Airport move along
Huntington Airport saw a busy month in July with projects moving along.
Leon Defriez the Airport Manager reported that plans are in progress to expand the East West runway, which will necessitate the removal of the Airport Office building, the first hangar, the home on the property and all of the trees around the home. This will create a clear zone. The East West runway would make the airport safer because the North South runway is subject to frequent cross winds.
Defriez said, he was preparing a space of ground to the east of the airport parking apron for additional aircraft parking. He is using a road grader to grade away the sage brush and smooth the ground.
The Back Country Pilots Association Fly In will be September 24-26. This will be their second annual fly in for Emery County. Last year 35 airplanes checked in and organizers expect to more than double that number this year. Many of those pilots will park and camp in tents at the airport or stay at a local motel.
For two weeks in July the Newmont Gold Company of Denver, Colo. assembled and tested a geophysical device that will hang under a helicopter to read the resistance of the earth to current flow. This geophysical device will transmit a magnetic field and measure the resistance of the earth to a depth of about 300 meters. This is an aid to geologic mapping and has been used in several places around the world such as Nevada, Wyoming, South America and Australia.
The Chief Geophysicist Bob Anderson said that Newmont Gold Company is not here to do any mapping in Utah, they are only here to repair and test the equipment. The Huntington Airport had hangar space available and little traffic to interfere with the testing.
The device being tested sends 700 to 800 amps to the transmitter loop, that looks like a large round antenna about 30 feet across and hangs (when in the air) about 50 feet below a receiving device. The receiving device looks like a flat box with fins and a long pipe like nose. The helicopter is about 50 feet further up in the air above the receiver carrying this equipment over the countryside on what looks like a long rope. In the helicopter Bob Anderson uses a computer to communicate with the transmitter and the receiver. The distance from the helicopter to the bottom of this string of equipment flying through the air is approximately 100 feet.
The helicopter will fly at a height of 500 to 1200 feet over the terrain being mapped.
This equipment if it works as expected could possibly help locate material that could be mined. If mine-able material were found in the United States it would not be mined because of the difficult permitting process. However in third world countries if minerals were found through the use of this testing equipment and mined it could help the economy of those countries.
Steve Dilmon the helicopter pilot said, the helicopter being used for this experiment is a Sky Dance Helicopter from Minden, Nev. This helicopter is the same one used to haul drilling equipment to the top of the mountain in the Crandall Canyon Mine disaster and is currently being used to haul drilling equipment to the top of mountains in Utah. This helicopter is capable of hauling 1,500 pounds of equipment up the mountains based on the elevation, the heat of the day and the thinness of the air at this altitude.
Other improvements at the airport will include the installation of a new home. The previous home at the airport will not be moved, but sold and removed from the property and bids are being taken at this time.
Funds for the airport improvements have come from the Utah Department of Transportations aeronautical division and additional funding coming from the Emery County Special Service District number one.
Improvements will continue at the airport in accordance to the airport plan put into place in 2006.