Crash of TWA Flight 800 in 1996 Launched the Development of INVICTA, an Advanced Preventive Fuel Tank Ignition Mitigation Technology Certified by the FAA
Atlanta, GA - This year marks the 25th Anniversary of the tragic TWA crash caused from an electrical spark in the fuel tank that killed 230 people. TWA Flight 800 exploded shortly after takeoff from John F. Kennedy Airport, and the following four-year investigation was one of the most exhaustive in U.S. aviation history. Federal aviation experts later determined the crash probably resulted from an electrical spark in the center wing fuel tank that set off fumes in an empty fuel tank.
From that investigation, the FAA issued safety recommendations and airworthiness directives that fundamentally changed the way aircraft fuel systems are protected. This tragic incident spurred Michael Williams, president of Jetaire Group, into action. Mr. Williams revolutionized aircraft fuel tank safety by developing multiple fuel system safety enhancements and invented a patented technology using a revolutionary reticulated foam-based fuel ignition mitigation system (INVICTA) that is installed in aircraft worldwide.
“The legacy I’m leaving is that I made aviation safety better throughout the world,” said
Williams, founder of Jetaire Group. “Jetaire has been the creator of a number of safety improvements for commercial aircraft. My inspiration to move this fuel tank safety initiation forward was also impacted by the loss of an Air Florida aircraft which I was scheduled to be on in 1982.”
Mr. Williams is the original developer and manufacturer of this patented foam-based fuel tank mitigation system that works by suppressing fuel ignition caused by heated fuel vapor, tank rupture, or lightning strike. Developed to assure that a similar TWA Flight 800 explosion does not reoccur, Jetaire’s INVICTA product is certified by the FAA and installed in numerous Boeing and Airbus models around the world. The INVICTA solution received three patents from the U.S. Trademark and Patent Office. This solution is highly regarded in the industry with an FAA official stating, “INVICTA technology should be on every aircraft flying.”
“Mr. Williams’ contributions to the aviation industry have a tremendous impact on the safety of millions of air travelers around the world,” said Steve Champness, President of the Atlanta Aero Club. “He has dedicated his whole career to improving aircraft safety and is the 2021 recipient of our Epps Award. The Epps Award recognizes individuals or companies that have made significant contributions to the aviation industry in terms of safety, education or technology. The Atlanta Aero Club is honored to recognize Michael Williams and Jetaire Group for their tremendous contributions to the aerospace industry.”
Jetaire Group holds the FAA Supplement Type Certificates (STC) for the installation of their INVICTA technology for the Boeing family of 737, 757, and 767 aircraft and the Airbus A320 series. INVICTA fulfils the FAR 25.981 and FTFR Rule Compliance and is known as the most reliable and cost-effective mitigation fuel tank flammability system in the industry. It is readily available to meet the short installation deadlines required, and it is easy to install, requires no maintenance, and has no failure modes.
INVICTA’S commercial version is similar to a technology used to protect military aircraft from medium arms fire and shoulder launch missiles (MANPADS) and could be an effective mitigator to similar threats to commercial aircraft. A similar technology is installed on the F16, P8, S8, and C130 aircraft.
Michael Williams founded Jetaire Group, a global aerospace manufacturing and engineering organization with four offices serving aviation customers in more than 50 countries. Located in Georgia, 2021 marks the company’s 36th anniversary supporting safety initiatives for the aerospace industry. Mr. Williams is an aerospace engineer, aviation industry inventor, award recipient, U.S. patent holder, and Georgia native that has broken barriers at every step in his career.
• Global pioneer and U.S. patent holder of the first foam Aircraft Fuel Safety System to ensure the TWA 800 explosion does not reoccur.
• One of the youngest and first African Americans designated by the FAA as a Designated Engineering Representative (DER).
• Winner of the 2020 Georgia GLOBE Award highlighting companies exporting to international markets and having a huge impact on the state’s economy.
• Global offices serving over 50 countries and certified by the FAA, ANAC, AFAC, and EASA.
ABOUT JETAIRE GROUP
Jetaire Group, headquartered in Atlanta, is an award-winning aerospace manufacturing, avionics safety, and aviation engineering firm that specializes in aircraft fuel tank ignition mitigation, FAR 25.981, and FTFR Rule compliance. Specializing in aircraft safety, their patented INVICTA system offers the only foam-based and FAA-certified center tank flammability reduction and ignition mitigation solution for clients in the aviation and aerospace industries. As global aircraft fuel tank safety compliance experts, Jetaire Group has been trusted by aviation companies in over 50 countries around the world for more than 36 years.