Posts Tagged ‘ACRP’

TRB e-circular “Critical Issues in Aviation and the Environment” published

Friday, April 18th, 2014

By Mary Ellen Eagan

TRB recently published Circular E-C184: “Critical Issues in Aviation and the Environment.” The following summarizes the content of the e-circular.

“Critical Issues in Aviation and the Environment 2014” consists of twelve individually authored sections, representing the authoring experts’ opinions on issues that address the major environmental components affected by aviation activities, sustainable solutions that have evolved and continue to be developed to minimize environmental impacts, and the key processes that link aviation and the environment.

Readers of prior e-circulars in this series may notice that we no longer include a stand-alone section on “sustainability”.  This is because the Committee believes that sustainability is a cross-cutting issue that affects all topics in the environment – it is a way of operating, not an “issue”.  We have added several new topics to this volume:

  1. Natural resource management:  Airports are challenged to address natural resource management issues related to wildlife hazards, natural resource revenue generation (e.g., timber, minerals, energy), and water conservation.
  2. Renewable energy:  this section addresses major issues airports should consider when identifying and developing renewable energy alternatives.
  3. Public Health:  an emerging issue that several airports are facing is the need to develop health impact assessments and health risk assessments to respond to community concerns regarding the impact of airports on communities.

The individually authored sections of this e-circular represent the viewpoints of the attributed authors.  Members and friends of the TRB Environmental Impacts of Aviation Committee have also reviewed and contributed comments to these sections.

Many thanks go to the authors (listed below, by paper):

Environmental Impacts of Aviation on Human and Natural Resources  

  • Noise: Natalia Sizov (Federal Aviation Administration), Brad Rolf (Mead & Hunt), Mary Ellen Eagan (Harris Miller Miller & Hanson Inc.)
  • Air Quality: John Pehrson (CDM), Warren Gillette (Federal Aviation Administration), Brian Kim (Wyle), Prem Lobo (Missouri University of Science and Technology)
  • Climate Change: Judith Patterson (Science College, Concordia University, Montreal, Canada ), Mohan Gupta (Federal Aviation Administration), Rangasayi Halthore (Federal Aviation Administration), Anuja Mahashabde (The MITRE Corporation, McLean, VA)
  • Water Quality: Dean Mericas (Mead & Hunt), John Lengel (Gresham Smith & Partners), Richard Davis (Beveridge & Diamond, P.C.)

Sustainable Solutions to Address Environmental Challenges

  • Climate Change Adaptation Planning and Preparedness: John Lengel (Gresham, Smith and Partners), Kristin Lemaster (CDM Smith), Judith Patterson (Concordia University), Andrea Schwartz Freeburg (Federal Aviation Administration)
  • Natural Resource Management: Dean Mericas (Mead & Hunt), Sarah Brammell (Environmental Resource Solutions)
  • Renewable Energy: Steve Barrett (Harris Miller Miller & Hanson Inc.), Bruno Miller (Metron Aviation), Phil Ralston (Port of Portland)
  • Aviation Alternative Fuels Development And Deployment:  Bruno Miller (Metron Aviation), Steve Csonka (CAAFI), Kristin Lewis (Volpe Center/RITA, Jim Hileman (FAA), Mark Rumizen (FAA), Nancy Young (Airlines for America), and John Heimlich (Airlines for America)

Processes and Tools for Implementing Sustainable Solutions

  • Environmental Review under NEPA:  Mary Vigilante (Synergy Consultants), Brad Rolf (Mead & Hunt), John Putnam (Kaplan Kirsch & Rockwell), Donald Scata (FAA), Betsy Delaney (First Environment), Barbara Thomson (First Environment)
  • Environmental Management Systems And Sustainability Measurement: Mary Vigilante (Synergy Consultants), Brad Rolf (Mead & Hunt), John Putnam (Kaplan Kirsch & Rockwell), Donald Scata (FAA), Betsy Delaney (First Environment), Barbara Thomson (First Environment)
  • Aviation Environmental Modeling Tool Suite:  James Hileman (Federal Aviation Administration), Christopher Roof (USDOT RITA)
  • Research Needs in Public Health In Aviation:  Burr Stewart (Burrst), Andrew Dannenberg (CDC), Brian Kim (Wyle), Daniel Jacob (Federal Aviation Administration)

 

ACRP Report Released on Defining and Measuring Aircraft Delay and Airport Capacity Thresholds

Wednesday, March 12th, 2014

ACRP104coverLast week, the Transportation Research Board’s Airport Cooperative Research Program (ACRP) released Report 104: Defining and Measuring Aircraft Delay and Airport Capacity Thresholds. The ACRP report offers guidance to help airports understand, select, calculate, and report measures of delay and capacity. The report describes common metrics, identifies data sources, recommends metrics based on an airport’s needs, and suggests ways to potentially improve metrics.

Guidance and recommendations are provided regarding the relevance of particular delay and capacity measures by airport type, airport characteristics, and project lifecycle phase. The report suggests the most appropriate measurement tools at various points in the project development cycle, for specific items in each element, and for different types of airports. The report does recognize that it is not practical to have one threshold that can be applied to all airports.

The report includes additional metrics that would be helpful in the future, one of which is better communication of delays to the general public. The report summarizes that these communications should be easily understandable, able to be used as a common measure at any airport, and applied consistently across all airports. It was also noted that using a more positive metric, such as level of service, rather than using a term such as delay, which has a negative connotation, would better serve the public and the industry overall.

The research, led by TransSolutions of Fort Worth, TX, was conducted under ACRP Project 03-20. The other team members and primary authors of the report included Futterman Consulting of St. Petersburg, FL, Harris Miller Miller & Hanson Inc. of Herndon, VA, and Jasenka Rakas of Berkeley, CA.

Click here to view the report.

Report from 2012 ACI-NA/World Conference & Exhibition

Wednesday, September 12th, 2012

by Mary Ellen Eagan

I’m just back from the 2012 ACI-NA/World Conference in Calgary, Alberta.  Highlights of the weekend’s Environmental Affairs Conference included the following:

The ACI-NA/World Conference and Exhibition kicked off with the Calgary White Hat Ceremony, a symbol of the Western hospitality and good cheer that made everyone feel very welcome.  Somehow I’m having trouble imagining that happening with a bunch of Red Sox hats…

Calgary White Hats Ceremony

Monday’s keynote speaker was Zanny Minton Beddoes, Economics editor for The Economist. She had some great things to say about her predictions for the economy, some of which was actually reassuring (for a change).

The Exhibit Hall was the usual mélange of consulting firms, concessionaires, and airport engineering products and services – everything from carpets to trains.  The Hall is always a great chance to catch up with folks – see who has switched companies, grab a latte, check out who has the best swag, etc.

Finally, I must say I was disappointed not to get a chance to explore Calgary, which seems a vibrant city, awash in oil and gas money. What little I did see (see photos below of the Family of Man and The Famous Five) was beautiful. Next time!

Family of Man, Calgary

Famous 5 Statue (not Clint Eastwood!), Calgary

 

HMMH Starts Work on Energy Siting Guidebook for the Aviation Industry

Wednesday, May 9th, 2012

by Steve Barrett

The National Academy of Sciences (NAS) has officially announced the selection of the HMMH Team to prepare “Guidebook for Energy Projects Compatibility with Airports and Airspace.”   The objective of this research is to produce a guidebook supported by empirical evidence that provides best practices for aviation safety associated with planning, developing and constructing energy production and transmission technologies at and around airports.

The project is funded under the NAS Transportation Research Board’s Airport Cooperative Research Program (ACRP) and sponsored by the Federal Aviation Administration.  The ACRP is an industry-driven, applied research program that develops near-term, practical solutions to problems faced by airport operators.  HMMH has undertaken several other ACRP research projects associated with aviation noise issues.

The Guidebook will review information on energy and airports including issues associated with solar photovoltaic (PV) and concentrating solar power, wind energy, power plant stacks and cooling towers, electric transmission lines, and oil and gas drilling.  Potential impacts include physical obstruction, glint and glare, radar interference, and thermal plumes.  The Guidebook will rely on existing experience like solar PV projects at Manchester, Indianapolis, and Fresno, and oil/gas drilling operations at Elmira-Corning, Dallas-Fort Worth, and Denver.

HMMH will be working with experts in the energy field.  The Department of Energy’s Sandia National Laboratories will evaluate solar glint and glare.  Bryan Miller, former Department of Defense Liaison to the White House, will review wind energy and radar issues.  Professor Yu Zhang from the University of South Florida will contribute knowledge about existing and future air traffic operations.  And Mary Vigilante of Synergy will provide oversight on airport operational issues.  The Guidebook will be delivered to the ACRP in the fall of 2013.  I look forward to managing this project and advancing the state of practice for enhanced energy project siting.

Standing on the shoulders of giants

Tuesday, December 13th, 2011

by Nick Miller

Ted Schultz was one of my early mentors when I began my career in noise and acoustics.  When I first joined Bolt Beranek and Newman Inc. he was consulting to HUD, providing technical background for its noise abatement standards.  Throughout that impressive and detailed work, he considered annoyance as one of the important reactions to noise and, I believe, collected and analyzed social surveys relating annoyance to sound levels.  As a further outcome, in 1978, Ted published in the Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, his “Synthesis of social surveys on noise annoyance,” (see also my blog of April 2010 ).  This article provided in its Figure 6 a curve giving percent of people highly annoyed as a function of noise exposure in terms of day-night average sound level.  This curve became associated with much of present federal policy for determining noise “impact” and is commonly called the Schultz curve.

For the past few years, there has been general concern that this curve may no longer accurately represent how people respond to aircraft noise.  Because Federal Aviation Administration noise policy is required by legislation to use a system of noise measurement that has “… a highly reliable relationship between projected noise exposure and surveyed reactions of individuals to noise….” (49 U.S.C Section 47502) it is important that the relationship of annoyance and noise exposure be reliable and reflects current conditions.

The Airport Cooperative Research Program is sponsoring research to design a new national survey of annoyance reactions and sleep disturbance caused by aircraft noise.  One objective is to develop an up-to-date, unbiased estimate of the annoyance / noise exposure relationship for US airports and surrounding communities – potentially an update of the Schultz curve.   We were fortunate enough to put together a team and a winning proposal to conduct this research.  Now, I must say that I knew Ted Schultz, Ted Schultz was a friend of mine, and I’m certainly no Ted Schultz, but I am nevertheless honored to be leading this team in work that is a direct follow-on to Ted’s impressive  accomplishment.