WASHINGTON, Oct. 19, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Aviation Week Network has announced the Grand Laureate winners for the 63rd Annual Laureate Awards, honoring extraordinary achievements in the global aerospace arena. They were selected from a total of 27 winners of the 2020 Laureate Awards and were announced during a virtual online program hosted by Aviation Week Editorial Director Joe Anselmo, Editors Jen DiMascio, Jens Flottau, William Garvey, Irene Klotz and Guy Norris, and Aviation Week Network President Greg Hamilton.

In addition, Aviation Week & Space Technology bestowed the Philip J. Klass Award for Lifetime Achievement. And two dozen outstanding students – the 20 Twenties, plus cadets and midshipmen from each of the four U.S. military academies -- were also recognized as Tomorrow’s Leaders.

“The Grand Laureates represent winners who embody the spirit of exploration, innovation and vision that will inspire others to strive for broad-reaching progress in aviation, aerospace and defense,” said Anselmo. Winners were chosen by Aviation Week editors, who reviewed dozens of nominations across four categories: Business Aviation, Commercial Aviation, Defense and Space.

Earlier this year, Aviation Week & Space Technology hosted a luncheon honoring the "20 Twenties" in partnership with the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA). The program recognizes the accomplishments and drive of 20 science, technology, engineering and mathematics students in their 20s and currently enrolled in a master's degree or bachelor's degree program.

The Grand Laureate Winners are:

COMMERCIAL AVIATION

Platforms - Airbus A321LR
The first long-range version of the Airbus A321neo, the A321LR is developing a new market niche - narrowbodies flying in secondary long-haul markets.

DEFENSE

Best New Product - Embraer KC-390
The first KC-390 tanker/transport, the largest and most sophisticated aircraft yet developed by Embraer, was delivered to the Brazilian Air Force in 2019.

SPACE

Technology & Innovation RemoveDEBRIS Mission
In a groundbreaking series of on-orbit tests, the European-funded RemoveDEBRIS mission demonstrated active debris removal technologies designed to clean up low Earth orbit.

BUSINESS AVIATION

Safety - Garmin Autoland
The push of a red button in an emergency by a pilot or passenger activates Garmin’s Autoland, a virtual co-pilot that takes control and lands the aircraft automatically.

LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT

Robert Leduc - President, Pratt & Whitney
Leduc came out of retirement and used his leadership skills to shake up the corporate team and guide the PW1000G geared turbofan program through its challenging service introduction and production ramp-up and onto the road to success.

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Aviation Week Network is the largest multimedia information and services provider for the global aviation, aerospace, and defense industries, serving 1.7 million professionals around the world. Industry professionals rely on Aviation Week Network to help them understand the market, make decisions, predict trends, and connect with people and business opportunities. Customers include the world's leading aerospace manufacturers and suppliers, airlines, airports, business aviation operators, militaries, governments and other organizations that serve this worldwide marketplace. Aviation Week Network’s portfolio delivers award-winning journalism, data, intelligence and analytical resources, world-class tradeshows and conferences, and results-driven marketing services and advertising.

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