Learn the tools used by flight test professionals


Daedalus Aerospace provides training and tools for aerospace professionals, with on-demand courses in flight test planning/execution, risk management, and data analytics. Our courses communicate the same concepts taught at accredited test pilot schools and used by leading flight test centers. Learn the principles, tools and processes used by flight test professionals, without the travel and high cost of in-person training. Few have opportunity to attend a test pilot school, but you and your team can benefit from the same knowledge. 

Whether you are working on evolutionary or revolutionary ideas, you need proven methods for successful aerospace product development. These processes contributed to engineering the aircraft and satellites of today, and are equally useful for emergent concepts such as airborne autonomy, electric propulsion, hypersonic flight, urban air mobility, and drone delivery. 

Daedalus Aerospace courses provide essential training for aerospace product teams.

Knowledge is Power

Why is aerospace product development different from making automobiles or consumer electronics?

Cockpit of a Mercedes Benz MaybachProduct teams for automobiles or consumer electronics are frequent users of their products. They understand how their products will be used, and may intuitively see potential advantages or pitfalls to their product's design. They are likely to be familiar with their company's previous models, and their competitor's products. Development pace for these industries can move very quickly ("fail fast") and problem reports can be crowdsourced.

These characteristics are generally not the case for aerospace. 

Aerospace development necessitates risks not common to other engineering fields. Because of the high kinetic/chemical/electrical energies, large dynamic forces, and highly interconnected nature of vehicle systems, many prototypes unfortunately experience a sudden intolerance to laws of physics. These events can carry disproportionately severe penalties due to unintended design consequences or operator error. 


  • Asynchronous, On-Demand Learning

    Self-paced instruction to mesh with your schedule. Pause or replay, while still able to engage with questions and dialog. Ideal on-the-job training for professionals already onboard with a product team.

  • Real-World Expertise

    Learn from experienced test pilot school graduates that have already planned, flown, and analyzed many high risk test missions. Get the benefits of theory and application.

  • Competence and Confidence

    Applicable content for established manufacturers and aerospace startups. Benefit from flight test lessons-learned, and avoid recursive design delays or costly disasters.

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Flight test principles create value for aerospace development teams

  • Stay on schedule

    Anticipating flight test requirements keeps projects on critical path. By planning parallel subsystem build-up tests, surprises are minimized later in the development cycle. The process is smooth, and smooth is quick.

  • Control the amount and types of risks

    Flight test risk management does not mean zero risk, but includes powerful tools to anticipate specific hazards and identify mitigations.

  • Avoid costly redesign

    Flight test reinforces requirements traceability with tools like system engineering. By incorporating "testability", product teams can minimize shifting goalposts and anticipate interfaces across the design.

Relevant, Practical, and Applicable

Flight test concepts are applicable to not only to conventional aircraft designs, but also emerging development trends, including: 

  • Vehicle autonomy
  • Remotely / Optionally Piloted Vehicles
  • Advanced Air Mobility (AAM) / Urban Air Mobility (UAM)
  • Hypersonic flight
  • Space launch
  • Swarming drones
  • Manned/Unmanned Teaming

Meet An Instructor

Instructor Test Pilot

David Kern

David Kern is a graduate of the US Air Force Test Pilot School, with experience planning and flying hundreds of flight test missions for civil aircraft certification and military projects. In 2011, he was the USAF F-16 project test pilot for the Collier Trophy-winning Automatic Ground Collision Avoidance System (AGCAS). In his USAF career, he served as Instructor Test Pilot and Director of Operations at the USAF Test Pilot School, teaching all parts of the multi-engine and fighter curricula. David is an Associate Fellow with the Society of Experimental Test Pilots, Member of the Society of Flight Test Engineers, and serves as a flight test pilot for the Aircraft Certification Service with the Federal Aviation Administration. He holds a Master of Science in Flight Test Engineering and B.Sci. Electrical Engineering with a minor in Mathematics. He also holds an Airline Transport Pilot certificate with seven type ratings, is an active Certified Flight Instructor for instrument conditions, and has logged piloting time at the flight controls of over 80 different types of aircraft. His publications include "Flight Test Techniques for Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) Radar", "Accelerated Development of Flight Tested Sensors and Systems", and “Introduction to Fly-by-Wire Flight Control Systems: The professional pilot’s guide to understanding modern aircraft controls.”

Delivering flight test education to aerospace leaders

Collins Aerospace
DeHavilland Aircraft of Canada
Robinson Helicopter Company
United Airlines
US Air Force
US Special Operations Command
British Airways


  • What is the value-added of Daedalus Aerospace principles to aerospace development?

    Daedalus Aerospace courses provide best practices, lessons learned, and professional strategies for flight test. Our course content is closely aligned with and based on the flight test methods used by the US Air Force, US Navy, NASA, FAA Aircraft Certification, and many other professional flight test operations. These proven best practices improve safety, data security, effectiveness, and efficiency.

  • How much can Daedalus Aerospace principles save my team?

    Although it's not possible to prove the "accident that never occurred", analysis of recent aerospace programs shows that product teams and businesses using professional flight test methods are over twice as likely to result in a successful product, and deliver their product to users in one third the time, compared to competing product teams.

  • Should anyone think about flight test before there is a finished product to test?

    Absolutely. Flight test adds value long before the prototype vehicle is built, since it incorporates system engineering and risk management principles that prevent redesign, rework, and regret. Reinventing wheels takes a lot of time. Teams that include the flight test perspective are more efficient, with a better track record for success.

  • Who teaches Daedalus Aerospace courses?

    Daedalus Aerospace courses are taught by career flight test professionals, including graduates and former on-staff instructors from the US Air Force Test Pilot School.

  • What about development of space systems, or working with assets already on orbit?

    Flight test principles are proven to significantly improve the effectiveness and efficiency of development for space systems. These benefits include space systems undergoing test prior to launch, as well as structuring validation and operational tests for on-orbit deployed systems.

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Ready to learn professional flight test principles? Invest in your career and your team's aerospace development skills today!