An American aeronautical engineer, James Raisbeck is known for his entrepreneurship in developing products that enhance the performance of production aircraft.
Born and raised in Whitefish Bay, Wisconsin, he graduated from high school in 1954 and joined the Air Force, and started his associ- ation with airplanes as a flight engineer. After graduating in Aeronautical and Aerospace Engineering from Purdue in 1961, Raisbeck joined The Boeing Airplane Company as a Research Aerodynamicist. Subsequent aerospace positions included employment at Robertson Aircraft, American Jet Industries, and the founding of the Raisbeck Group and Raisbeck Engineering, where he was Chairman and CEO. Its corporate, engineering, shipping and receiving operations are adjacent to Boeing field, where it conducts its experimental and certification efforts.
Raisbeck has influenced many business turbine aircraft designs, including the design and production of the Supercritical Wings and many systems for the Rockwell International jet Sabreliner 65-series; new and more efficient wings for the Learjet family, performance enhancement systems for Beechcraft’s entire Beechcraft King Air family, which are now incorporated on the King Air 350, and 250 production line, and Aft Fuselage Lockers for the Learjet family.
The year preceding 9/11, Raisbeck developed bulletproof doors and bulkheads for the Boeing 737s and 757s. Raisbeck began production delivery of Armored Cockpit Security Systems, later turning over the entire program and customers to Boeing. He developed and produced enlarged overhead bins for JetBlue for the Airbus A320, and luggage lockers and avionic pods for larger business jet aircraft.
He was honored by Purdue University with the Distinguished Engineering Alumnus Award and also the Outstanding Aerospace Engineer Award, the Pathfinder Award at the Museum of Flight in 2007, Pro Pilot’s Aviation Entrepreneur of the Year Award in 2000, and was the recipient of the “Lifetime Aviation Entrepreneur Award” by the Living Legends of Aviation in 2007.
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