Frontline’s Aerospace Legacy
CEO Ryan Schuyler Wood – along with his father Dr. Robert M. Wood – represents a family legacy in aeronautical and astronautical engineering. Grandfather Dr. K. D. Wood pioneered textbooks in airplane and spacecraft design, while launching generations of engineers into aerospace careers. Grandfather “Sky” Kleinhans innovated both rotary- and fixed-wing aircraft before retiring as Corporate Vice President of Engineering for the McDonnell Douglas Corporation and serving as Chairman of the company’s Scientific Advisory Committee.
recognized publications and groundbreaking texts include: Technical Aerodynamics; the two-volume Aerospace Vehicle Design; twelve editions of Aircraft Design with key delineation of “Airplane Design”; and finally Spacecraft Design. He was actively consulted on missile design and supersonic transports. He was one of the first engineers to predict the key role that
helicopters play in today’s mass transportation. Today, he would recognize that the future of the helicopter is limited and that the advent of ducted-lift-fan technology used in Frontline’s V-STAR™ is the future of vertical-take-off-and-landing (VTOL) aircraft.
KD Wood Resumes, Newspaper Articles (1.1 MiB)“The aeronautical engineering program at the University of Colorado at Boulder, as created at the time by the late, legendary ‘KD’ Wood was a near perfect fit …”Dr. John McMasters, Boeing Technical Fellow, 29th AIAA/SAE William Littlewood Memorial Lecturer for “contributions in civil aviation” – recollecting the start of his aeronautics career.
- 1935 – Chief Designer for the DC-4E and the B-19
- 1941-1945 – Assistant Chief Engineer for Douglas Aircraft Company during World War II, opening the Long Beach plant, responsible for final designs for the DC-3, DC-4, DC-6 and DC-7
- 1945 – Inaugurated the era of jet airplanes with the Douglas twin-jet B-43; when more suitable and reliable engines for commercial airplanes were developed, airplanes such as the Douglas DC-8 emerged.
- 1960 – named as Chief Engineer, Douglas Aircraft Company
In 1962, Sky was named Corporate Vice-President of Engineering and retired in 1967 after the merger with McDonnell Aircraft Company. From 1967-1969 he served as Chairman of the Scientific Advisory Committee of the McDonnel Douglas Corporation. He was elected a Fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics.