The Ohio State University Airport (KOSU) serves the Columbus community as a fully operational executive airport, an aviation research and development facility and a learning lab for aspiring flight professionals. Since 1942, the airport has grown to be a nationally-recognized leading general aviation facility.

For both June and July of 2020, KOSU logged the most takeoffs and landings across all Ohio airports.

Follow along as we take a virtual visit to popular stops on our self-guided tour route.

1. Barnstormer Brutus

Barnstormer Brutus is one of 40 life-size Brutus statues made for the 2007 "Brutus on Parade" campaign, which funded the William Oxley Thompson Memorial Library renovation completed in 2009. He was designed by local Columbus artist Gail Rosenblum and has been on display at the airport since 2016.

2. Oops! Right City, Wrong Airport

On July 4, 1967, a Trans World Airlines 707 accidentally landed at the Ohio State airport, the crew mistaking it for Port Columbus International Airport. The plane was able to take off for the correct facility, but only after sending passengers on shuttles and removing unnecessary equipment from inside the aircraft.

Aerial view of the airfield

3. 1940 Piper J3 Cub

This vintage Piper Cub hangs in the terminal lobby and was donated by retired pilot Don Peters to celebrate Columbus' historical impact on aviation. The aircraft has quite a history— it was originally used for training during World War II at Norton Field, then purchased by Norton Field flight Instructor Harley D. Snook, who years later worked with student Don Peters to restore the Cub in the early 1990s. The aircraft itself has no electrical system, requiring hand propping to start. Learn more about the Piper Cub and its owner here.

4. NetJets Observation Deck

For years, Columbus-based NetJets has been an integral supporter of Ohio State's aviation education and research endeavors. Early in 2019, NetJets donated $1.2 million toward the airport's modernization project, in part funding construction of the Austin E. Knowlton Executive Terminal and Aviation Learning Center. The observation deck is popular among visitors of all ages, providing onlookers with a full view of the airfield and allowing them to see the many take-offs and landings happening every day.

The lobby of the new Austin E. Knowlton Executive Terminal at KOSU

5. Don Scott and Pioneers of Aviation

Don Scott Field was named after an Ohio State All-American athlete and WWII pilot. Don Scott was a two-time All-American quarterback and participated in the Civilian Pilot Training Program at Ohio State. He died on October 1, 1943, in a bomber crash in England and the airfield was named a month later. Alongside the portrait and biography honoring Don Scott at the airport, there is a digital presentation about Ohio State's pioneers of aviation.

6. Aviation Artwork Gallery

While a student at The Ohio State University, Youngstown born and raised Edward "Otto" Pernotto was involved in the Civil Air Patrol and Air Force ROTC, and he worked at the airport's Maintenance Parts Department. Over the years, Pernotto has curated his collection aviation and military artworks, part of which is now housed at KOSU.

“It's my pleasure to provide visitors a chance to honor these incredible aviators and space pioneers and perhaps inspire new generations to achieve greatness.” - Colonel Edward “Otto” Pernotto, USAFR (Ret.)

Pictured from left to right: He Who Dares by Rick Reeves, Tuskegee Airmen by Larry Selman, Gathering of Eagles 1982 by William J. Reynolds, Naval Aviation by Robert L. Rasmussen

Learn more about the Aviation Artwork Collection here.

7. Flight Education Dispatch Desk

The dispatch desk serves as a gateway between the terminal and the runway, where students make their final stop before taking off. Here, students check-in to their flight slots, pick up aircraft keys and receive updates on weather conditions. Aviation students perform the dispatch work, which provides on-the-job training and skill building for work in the aviation industry. The lobby was also designed to be a place for students, staff, alumni and industry members to network. Adjacent to the lobby are flight instructors’ offices, along with the flight simulator lab.

8. Flight Simulator Lab

Ohio State's flight simulator lab allows students to have a hands-on experience while training. This way, they can practice procedures on the ground so that they're ready in the air. The lab features three training devices: the Frasca Truflight Flight Training Device, the Redbird FMX Simulator (pictured here) and the newest addition, the Frasca Reconfigurable Training Device.

KOSU's full-service terminal provides a variety of amenities and aircraft maintenance to 200+ tenants and corporate partners.

9. Flight Team Awards

The Ohio State Flight Team is a student team that competes in the Safety and Flight Education Conference (SAFECON), held by the National Intercollegiate Flying Association. At the conference, teams participate in ground and flight events, all the while sharpening their skills and building connections with peers and industry professionals. The Ohio State team consistently places in the top-five schools in the nation, taking home a second-place victory in its 2019 regional competition.

10. Airport History Timeline

Since the opening of its School of Aeronautics in 1917, Ohio State has played an integral role in developing the aviation field. The airport we know today was built in the 1940s and has undergone various expansions since then. A wall in the airport showcases a timeline of the its history and airport trivia. Learn more about KOSU's history here.

Newspaper clipping from 1917

Take a virtual flight!

Planning to visit the airport in person? Click here to learn more.