Good morning, and thank you for holding this hearing, Chairman Babin.

It is no accident that today’s hearing is the first subcommittee hearing held by the Science Committee this Congress. Some of our colleagues might not be aware of this fact, but the Science Committee has jurisdiction over a wide range of FAA’s research and development activities.

Though not as high-profile as FAA’s other activities, this research and development is vital to improving American aviation. FAA’s R&D is geared toward activities such as reducing fuel consumption and flight times for airlines, utilizing better structural materials on aircraft and at airports, and researching the effects of flight on human health.

This committee typically drafts legislation that authorizes FAA’s research and development activities, which is then incorporated into the larger FAA authorization bill.

The current FAA Authorization expires at the end of September, and I look forward to working with Members of this Committee and my colleagues in both Houses of Congress to enact a new bill.

Aviation R&D is not only a matter of national interest, but also an issue that’s particularly important to my constituents back home. Oklahoma is home to cutting edge aeronautical research. The Civil Aerospace Medical Institute - often referred to as CAMI (Cammie) - is located at the Mike Monroney Aeronautical Center in Oklahoma City.

For more than 60 years, CAMI’s focus has been on the human factors of flight, and how conditions like fatigue or illness can impact pilots’ performance during airflight. CAMI’s research has contributed to important features which make flight safer, such as drop-down oxygen masks and illuminated floor lighting.

The FAA R&D that should be authorized this year will continue to build on successes like these, making aviation safer, more efficient, and more reliable.  I want to thank our witnesses for appearing before the subcommittee today and I look forward to your testimony. Thank you Mr. Chairman and I yield back.