Posts Tagged ‘airport noise’

Van Nuys Airport Achieves “Zero Noise Impact”

Friday, July 6th, 2012

by Ted Baldwin

Congratulations to Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA) for achievement of “zero noise impact” at Van Nuys Airport (VNY)!  The July/August 2012 issue of Airport Improvement Magazine includes a concise article summarizing this accomplishment; see “Van Nuys Airport Achieves Zero Noise Impact Designation”

Noise impact reduction is a high priority throughout LAWA, starting with the policy guidance from the Board of Airport Commissioners and extending through staff contributions from all involved branches of the organization.   Noise Management staff deserve particular credit for their decades-long efforts to develop, implement, and promote LAWA’s noise-impact-reduction policies.  

The VNY noise management program is unusually comprehensive.  In addition to including a complete range of noise abatement and compatible land use measures to both minimize and mitigate noise exposure, it includes a full collection of complementary monitoring, enforcement, and stakeholder outreach elements to ensure that the measures are implemented and communicated in the most effective means feasible.

LAWA’s efforts to continuously evaluate and improve the inclusiveness and effectiveness of the program are particularly noteworthy.  HMMH was proud to assist the LAWA on two recent efforts of this type, both of which implemented recommendations from the VNY Part 161 Study; i.e., (1) the Stage 2 Phaseout, and (2) the Updated Fly Friendly/Quiet Departure Program.  These two measures extended and enhanced existing noise abatement measures to best reflect current airport operations and needs, industry conditions, and regulatory conditions.

Beating the Heat: Sound Insulation Provides More than Noise Control

Monday, September 19th, 2011

by J. Eric Cox

It has been a very hot summer; in fact it was the fifth warmest on record for the Northern Hemisphere. Several parts of the country are experiencing severe drought, including Texas. HMMH has recently been conducting pre- and post-construction sound insulation measurements around several airports in these particularly hot and humid conditions:

 Working outdoors in extreme weather with the heat index typically approaching 110 has presented HMMH personnel with many unique challenges. In addition to always remembering sunscreen, hats, and sunglasses as well as being careful to stay hydrated, we have learned to avoid burns from hot metal equipment, evade Texas red wasps, dodge Florida thunderstorms, record information on and preserve sweat-soaked data sheets, politely convince residents to turn off air conditioning and open curtains/blinds during acoustical testing and work around increased indoor activity since it is often too hot for homeowners to take children, the elderly, or pets away from the home.

While the main purpose of a sound insulation program is to reduce residents’ exposure to indoor noise generated by arriving and departing aircraft, there is another significant ancillary benefit that should not be overlooked: increased thermal insulation. That’s right, sound insulation also makes a building greener, decreasing energy consumption and homeowner utility costs. I have always found interacting with homeowners and assisting in a program that improves their quality of life quite rewarding. It is nice to know we are also helping to reduce their carbon footprint and associated monthly costs as a bonus.

HMMH personnel have worked in extreme weather at the other end of the spectrum too, where homeowners are also likely to experience benefits beyond noise abatement. As I write this, we are next scheduled to conduct post-construction acoustical testing at Our Lady Help of Christians, a historic Catholic church near to Buffalo-Niagara International. We are also providing on-going acoustical services for the residential sound insulation program at the airport. In addition to Buffalo NY, our team has conducted sound insulation measurements in the snow in several locations, including Alaska and…believe it or not (I have the photo to prove it folks)…Tulsa International in Oklahoma!

Bucket Truck in Tulsa, OK

October 2011 INM Course

Wednesday, August 24th, 2011

by Brad Nicholas

HMMH’s is offering its fall Integrated Noise Model (INM) training course October 5-7.  Registration is open and space is available.  Check our website for registration details.  The course covers:

  • Airport noise terminology
  • Airport noise modeling basics
  • INM input
  • INM output
  • Several complete INM test cases

The vast majority of the course deals with the nuts and bolts of entering and editing model input, running the model, and handling the output.  Students get a lot of hands on practice.  If you plan on creating or reviewing airport noise contours, this course is for you.

I’ve been working with students in the INM course for nearly nine years.  We get a folks from a variety of backgrounds and I always enjoy helping them to learn something new.

INM Screen Capture

ANMS Conference Debrief

Wednesday, November 10th, 2010

by Mike Carr

Eugene Reindel and I recently attended the 10th Annual Airport Noise Mitigation Symposium (ANMS), hosted by San Francisco International Airport (SFO) in San Francisco, California. ANMS is the only U.S. conference pertaining directly to the issues relating to airport noise mitigation. The theme this year played off of the San Francisco’s iconic Golden Gate Bridge; Building a Bridge to Compatibility.

This year’s conference was a great success and enjoyed by all (from what I heard). This is in no small part due to the great job of the Symposium’s planning committee which was co-chaired by Michael McCarron of San Francisco International Airport, and Carla Kell-Smith of C. Kell-Smith & Associates, Inc. The agenda had a great mix of presentation styles and topics from across the industry.  Mix that with a humorous, facetious, yet educational keynote address on the history of Sound Insulation from Carl Rosenberg of Acentech, a Napa/Sonoma Valley wine tour, and golf tourney overlooking the bay and you might just have a hit.

As for the actual session, topics ranged from FAA roundtable discussions, airport land acquisition, adding a green/sustainable focus to your program, and my personal favorite… Sound Insulation and Testing (although I’m biased). One topic of particular interest, which kept sneaking into sessions and conversations, was the Airport Cooperative Research Program (ACRP) update to the Guidelines for Sound Insulation of Residences Exposed to Aircraft Operations (Guidelines).

A session directly discussing the ACRP Update to the Guidelines document was presented by Michael Payne of The Jones Payne Group. Michael Payne, who is the Principal Investigator for the Update, offered the following perspective on the purpose and need for the Update:

While there is much useful information in the two previous versions, much of it needs to be updated to reflect current costs, codes and “Best Practices”.

The Approach for the update plans to:

Build upon the two previous versions by maintaining that which is useful and relevant while updating and expanding the Guidelines in key areas such as:

  • Energy performance and sustainability
  • Community Outreach
  • Improvements in Products
  • Current Code and other Regulatory Requirements
  • Bidding methodologies and project costs

Michael’s presentation sparked a decent amount of discussion among attendees; I look forward to seeing the updated Guidelines as they are issued. The final submittal is expected in Fall/Winter 2011, so look for it sometime after.

On a side note, special congratulations are also in order for Michael Payne, as he was this year’s recipient of the Randy Jones Award for Excellence in Airport Noise Mitigation.

HMMH has had the opportunity to be involved in the ANMS since nearly the beginning, providing sponsorship, chairing or moderating sessions, presenting paper, and participating as members of the planning committee. This was my first year of involvement, both in attending the conference and participating on the planning committee.  I’m looking forward to participating and seeing all of your shining faces at the 11th annual ANMS in the ‘Lou (NO NOT THE LOO! St Louis!).