Posts Tagged ‘TRB’

Transportation Research Board Releases HMMH-Authored ACRP Report 141 – Renewable Energy as an Airport Revenue Source

Wednesday, August 12th, 2015

By Stephen Barrett, LEED AP

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I am pleased to announce the release of TRB’s ACRP Report 141 – Renewable Energy as an Airport Revenue Source. I authored the report with my colleague Philip DeVita and we were supported by team members from Frasca and Associates, Foley & Lardner LLP, Plante Environmental, and SunPower Corp.  Report 141 provides the aviation industry with new information and guidance on the ownership structure and financial accounting behind an increasing number of airport renewable energy projects.  Airports are constantly looking for alternative revenue streams to increase their competitiveness and grow their businesses. They also are exploring ways to use technology to run more efficiently and achieve meaningful cost savings that can be passed on to anchor tenants in the form of more competitive rates and charges. Airports are rich in land and buildings connected to regional infrastructure that provide cost-effective investment opportunities that will benefit the airport business well into the future. Renewable energy has become mainstream as a result of technological advancement, market maturity, and public sector policy and investment with profound benefits to power markets. Renewable energy has diversified the sources of energy and decentralized the power generation network increasing competition, expanding infrastructure investments, and improving national energy security and reliability of the electrical grid. It has increased regional competition for emerging energy generation with states vying for the new business opportunities and markets. It has also demonstrated the viability of a future carbon free economy with the design of high performance buildings that use less energy and supply what is needed through renewable sources. ACRP Report 141 describes renewable energy technologies, airport and renewable energy financing considerations, steps for project implementation, and a summary of 21 airport renewable energy case studies representing various technologies and funding strategies.  It also includes a comprehensive list of all of the solar projects at airports in the U.S., a matrix of renewable energy funding opportunities, a solar feasibility case study, and a sample airport renewable energy RFP.  I will present the report’s findings at the Airports Going Green Conference on October 27 in Chicago.

TRB Releases HMMH-Authored ACRP Document 19: Integrated Noise Model Accuracy for General Aviation Aircraft

Wednesday, October 29th, 2014

by Nicholas P. Miller

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The Transportation Research Board (TRB) recently released ACRP Document 19: Integrated Noise Model Accuracy for General Aviation Aircraft, the result of research conducted by a team of consultants led by HMMH. HMMH was retained to conduct this research project to determine the cause and recommend changes to the Integrated Noise Model (INM), which currently incorrectly computes the noise created by many of the General Aviation Jets. The study compared INM produced sound exposure levels and climb profiles with measured sound exposure levels and radar reported climb profiles. HMMH found that the INM assumed all aircraft used maximum power for takeoff, while in practice, pilots used a “derated” thrust to preserve engine life, creating lower takeoff altitudes, and generally lower levels than the INM computed. HMMH developed a method that would use the INM modeling in a realistic manner, duplicating the procedures used by pilots and are in communication with FAA to assist if possible in correcting the INM modeling. In the future, modeling would be more accurate, noise exposures realistic, and better decisions will be made about land use and aircraft noise around airports where General Aviation jets operate.

TRB Releases HMMH-Authored NCHRP Report 791 – Supplemental Guidance on the Application of FHWA’s Traffic Noise Model (TNM)

Tuesday, October 21st, 2014

by Christopher Menge

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Harris Miller Miller & Hanson Inc. (HMMH) is pleased to announce the release of TRB’s NCHRP Report 791 – Supplemental Guidance on the Application of FHWA’s Traffic Noise Model (TNM), the final product of NCHRP Project 25-34, led by HMMH and supported by a team of consultants.

Noise is an important environmental concern for highway planners and designers, and through 2010, state highway agencies have spent $5.4 billion to abate the noise generated by federally-aided highway projects. Transportation agencies assess different aspects of highway noise to determine or predict community impacts during transportation planning, although procedures have varied by program and agency. The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA)’s Transportation Noise Model (TNM) is a computer program used for predicting noise levels and their impacts in the vicinity of highways. The TNM was developed in the 1990’s by a team led by HMMH under contract to the FHWA. The FHWA has provided substantial guidance for the routine application of the TNM; however, scenarios still exist for which there remains limited or no technical guidance.

Under NCHRP Project 25-34, HMMH was asked to investigate sixteen different research topic areas to identify best practices and provide significant guidance on applying TNM to accurately, consistently, and efficiently model traffic-generated noise in a variety of settings that has not been previously addressed by TNM. The objective of NCHRP 25-34 was to supplement existing guidance on applying the TNM by identifying best practices to model structure reflected noise; bridge expansion joints; signalized interchanges; intersections; area sources (e.g., weigh stations, park and ride lots, toll facilities, and service plazas); median barriers; roundabouts; and tunnel openings. The research determines the sensitivity and accuracy of methods to model multi-lane highways, rows of buildings, topography, ground zones, and tree zones, and identifies best practices for input parameters. The research also synthesizes the state of practice for analyzing the effects of wind and temperature gradients on sound propagation.

The results of NCHRP Project 25-34 are intended for use by experienced analysts, modelers, and designers. Report 791 will be of immediate use to experienced users of TNM by helping them to improve the accuracy and precision of their modeling results and inform decision-making related to the design of noise abatement measures.

TBT: TRB – The National Academy of Sciences

Thursday, June 5th, 2014

by Mary Ellen Eagan

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I’m at the Transportation Research Board (TRB)’s Keck Center in DC for several Aviation Group mid-year meetings this week. Here’s a bit of The National Academy history (lifted directly from the NAS website):

The National Academy of Sciences was founded on March 3, 1863, at the height of the Civil War.

The immediate roots of the NAS can be traced back to the early 1850s and a group of scientists based largely in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The group enlisted the support of Massachusetts Senator Henry Wilson, who helped draft a bill for the incorporation of the National Academy of Sciences. Wilson brought the bill to the Senate on February 20, 1863, where it was passed on March 3. It was passed by the House of Representatives later that day, and was signed into law by President Lincoln before the day was over. The National Academy of Sciences had officially come into being with 50 charter members, who over the years would be joined by the election of the nation’s most distinguished scientists.

[T]he Academy shall, whenever called upon by any department of the Government, investigate, examine, experiment, and report upon any subject of science or art, the actual expense of such investigations, examinations, experiments, and reports to be paid from appropriations which may be made for the purpose, but the Academy shall receive no compensation whatever for any services to the Government of the United States.

An Act to Incorporate the National Academy of Sciences[4]

Over the years, the National Academy of Sciences has broadened its services to the government. During World War I it became apparent that the limited membership—then numbering only about 150—could not keep up with the volume of requests for advice regarding military preparedness. In 1916 the Academy established the National Research Council (NRC) at the request of President Wilson to recruit specialists from the larger scientific and technological communities to participate in the Academy’s advisory work to the government.  Recognizing the value of scientific advice to the nation in times of peace as well as war, Wilson issued an executive order at the close of World War I asking the Academy to perpetuate the National Research Council. Subsequent executive orders, by President Eisenhower in 1956 and President Bush in 1993, have affirmed the importance of the National Research Council and further broadened its charter.

TRB is a division of NRC. I’m guessing Lincoln never could have imagined some of the discussions that go on in this building, but it somehow seems noble to be carrying out his vision.

ACRP Releases HMMH-authored Report on Energy Projects and Airports and Airspace

Friday, April 25th, 2014

by Stephen Barrett

HMMH is pleased to inform clients and colleagues of the official release of Airport Cooperative Research Program (ACRP) Report 108 “Energy Technologies Compatibility with Airports and Airspace.” This report is the first in a series of ACRP Reports on energy and airports that are expected for release in the next year. The HMMH-authored report reviews the aviation industry’s experience with a variety of energy technologies including solar, wind, oil and gas drilling, and traditional electricity generation and transmission, and provides guidance for future projects to avoid impacts on airports and airspace. The report is timely given the country’s focus on domestic energy production to serve economic and national security interests and to diversify energy generation sources toward cleaner fuels, including renewables. The guidance will also help airports as they consider opportunities to lease out underutilized non-aeronautical property for energy production.

ACRP Report 108