AWEC2019 was mostly open, but its planning trails and the weird AWEurope Closed Session were not. Here is the AWEIA open letter to the AWEurope Closed Session, consistent with varied concerns publicly raised since AWEC was privately created in 2010 by a closed insider group dominating to this day. HAWPcon2009, the first conference, under open-academic and AWEIA principles, was fully open. So was AWEC2011, under Wubbo Ockels, the last EU AWE leader to include AWEIA participation, and transparent planning and proceedings. Now EU and Google venture monopolization of AWEC conferences is the secondary issue. Open publication of major venture crash Mishap Reports, Failure Mode Analysis docs, and open Flight Logs, have all become the most urgent issues in AWE R&D, for both investors and general public knowledge.
To Closed Session of AWEurope at AWEC2019: Please Forward to Full Membership
This year has seen major mishaps of high-risk high-complexity AWES architectures; a low- MTBF statistical pattern long predicted by various expert stakeholders. Especially menacing architectures are the premature scaling down-selects of Google’s Makani and AWEurope’s leading venture insider members, like Ampyx, Kitepower, and TUDelft.
Breaking with Aviation Safety Culture tradition, AWE venture crashes are being covered-up; no public crash videos, no formal exhaustive Mishap Reports, no shared Failure Mode Analysis, no open Flight Logs. Implicated AWE investors and engineers face increasing financial, legal, and moral liability for guilty knowledge and wrongful secrecy over privately-known specific risks. Not only are human populations like Valkenburg and Waimea being put at risk, but the hype-driven venture capital ethos in AWE has long been unfair business competition to the majority of small lower-risk lower-complexity AWES developers.
This Open Letter is a call to AWEurope and Google/Makani to finally cease and desist from venture secrecy in favor of a truly open and excellent AWE Aviation Safety Culture. AWEurope is asked to require of its members full disclosure of safety issues, including open third-party expert investigation of mishaps and safety practices, open publication of Mishap Reports and FMA docs, and detailed Flight Logs inspectable by parties with standing (domain-experts, impacted-communities, decision-makers). Openness will also help weed weak hype-dependent architectures out.
Thank You for resolutely undertaking AWE Safety Culture reform within AWEurope circles, before undue tragedy forces reform on you.