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Middle school boys to venture cross-straits flight

Posted December. 24, 2000 19:51,   


Two middle school students may cross the Daehan Straits in a light plane on Liberation Day next year.

Lee Ki-Wung, 14, and his close friend of the same age, Ahn Jun-Hyeong, both in their first year at Muan Buk Middle School in South Cholla province, started flight training last Thursday at Hwasun airstrip.

They are planning to fly a two-seater over Daehan, also known as the Korea Straits, on Aug. 15. The pair is the only middle school students enrolled in the youth flying school, which is sponsored by light aircraft manufacturer Alpha Air.

During the winter vacation, they will take lessons in aviation regulations, flying theory, air traffic and aerial navigation. Eventually, they will be allowed to make solo flights.

Upon obtaining a license to fly light planes from the Korea Light Aircraft Association next February, the two will receive intensive instruction on flying in bad weather and over long distances. The two will make their planned flight in a 225 kg light plane, known as Model CH701, which is made by Alpha Air and Zenith of the United States.

It is expected to take the rookie pilots about two hours to fly from Hwasun airstrip to Tsushima island on Japan. Sponsors of the proposed flight are preparing a gala event to welcome the duo home when they return on the same day.

The instructor for the two boys, Mun Ki-Soo of Alpha Air, said that they would be given simulation practice and physical fitness training to prepare them for their first long-distance flight.

If they succeed in their first venture, the pair is determined to embark on a trans-Pacific flight during the winter recess next year.