Hi, I’m Jake Martin, Test Technician at the Advanced Structural Testing Centre (ASTC).

I recently completed my engineering apprenticeship and will shortly be starting my foundation degree in Mechanical Manufacturing.

The thing I most enjoying about being part of the structural testing team is the diversity of the team. We’re all skilled in different areas and work together to apply these skills to the tests. The ethos we have is great too – we work hard but have a laugh with it too.

My role in the Whiffletree project to date has been fairly limited because unfortunately I’ve been on sick leave. However since I’ve been back I’ve been preparing the plane’s surface for the strain gauges and doing other prep work for the strain gauges as I’ve recently completed my BSSM Level 1, alongside Steve C. I’ve also been helping to build the rig amongst other things. I’ll continue to support the project where and when I can as the team ask me to.

The part of the Whiffletree project that I’m most looking forward to is putting the entire plane and the rig together and working out how we’re going to recreate the climate that we need – for example I think it needs to be at 72 degrees constantly for three weeks. It’s a new challenge for us but exciting too!

The proudest achievement in my career to date is when I achieved the highest mark possible in the further education aspect of my apprenticeship for the last two years. I got double distinction* in my BTEC.

If I could fly any aircraft it would have to be the Lightning. There’s only one left in service now I think. It looks so aggressive and is an awesome plane!