> > News Archive 2009

News Archive 2009

HMMH Presents First-ever Founders’ Award

At this year’s annual meeting, held on October 21, HMMH presented its first Founders’ Award for Excellence – in recognition of outstanding performance on a project that was uniquely challenging, technically innovative, and resulted in proven client satisfaction.

The award went to Dynamics and Noise Consultancy Services for Kowloon-Canton Railway Corporation.  David A. Towers accepted the award as Project Manager, on behalf of the project team.

Beginning in 2004, HMMH provided noise and vibration design review and assessment services to Kowloon-Canton Railway Corporation/MTR for this underground railway extension project in Hong Kong, in close proximity to sensitive hotels and cultural facilities. HMMH is currently working for KCRC/MTR under a five-year contract to provide noise and vibration consulting services for this project. One major task undertaken under this contract was a test program to measure ground-borne vibration propagation from the newly-constructed rail tunnel to the nearby Hong Kong Cultural Centre.

Other key staff who worked on the project include:

  • Jason C. Ross
  • Timothy M. Johnson
  • Douglas E. Barrett
  • Carl E. Hanson

"Dave impressed us greatly with his superb technical knowledge and skilful application of such.  We're delighted that he understood the client's objectives and requirements so well and executed his assignments in a manner that would be an envy to many professionals.  Dave is a rare combination of sterling technical expert, master diplomat and seasoned project manager."  

 Richard Kin Yan Kwan 

HMMH Unveils Offshore Wind Project for Town of Nantucket

The News Article from the Nantucket Inquirer & Mirror: Town investigating feasibility of its own wind farm By Joshua Balling.

DART Selected for Award of Excellence

The Final Environmental Impact Statement for Dallas Area Rapid Transit’s Northwest Corridor LRT Line to Irving / DFW Airport was selected to receive the FTA Outstanding Achievement Award for Excellence in Environmental Document Preparation in the EIS category.  HMMH was part of the consultant team that prepared the Final EIS.  HMMH provided detailed noise and vibration consulting services for the project, helping to minimize the number of impacts through engineering design changes to the project.

The Irving line branches off of the Northwest Corridor (Green Line) in northwest Dallas and extends through Irving to Las Colinas and ultimately to DFW airport.  The first segment is scheduled to open in 2011 with an ultimate completion date of 2013. 

The public presentation of the awards will occur at the American Public Transit Association Annual Meeting October 4-7, 2009 in Orlando, FL. 

“We are delighted to bestow this recognition on your exemplary efforts to produce an effective, efficient, and practical environmental document.” 

 Faith Cole, Federal Transit Administration

HMMH Wins DOE Tidal Energy Project

Harris Miller Miller & Hanson Inc. (HMMH) has been selected by the US Department of Energy (DOE) to lead environmental impact assessment studies for the proposed Edgartown Tidal Energy Project.  Funded under DOE’s Advanced Water Power Program, the winning proposal, titled “The Environment Effects of Sediment Transport Alteration and Impacts on Protected Species Project,” will be an important step toward initiating permitting for a 1.5 MW Tidal Energy Project proposed by the Town of Edgartown in Muskeget Channel east of Martha’s Vineyard.  The project will be managed by Steve Barrett, Director of Clean Energy at HMMH.

The objective of this study is two-fold: (1) to evaluate the potential environmental impacts associated with sediment transport alteration of two established tidal energy technologies - horizontal open bladed turbines mounted on monopoles and horizontal helical turbines that float from moorings; and (2) to collect and analyze information on the occurrence and potential impacts of protected species in the project area. 

HMMH will direct, administer, and communicate all aspects of the proposed environmental studies program.  HMMH will also communicate the tidal project’s goals and the objectives of the proposed environmental studies to regulatory staff, local governments, and stakeholders and interest groups.  HMMH and the Town of Edgartown will use the information generated to support federal, state, and local permit applications associated with the first stage pilot project.

Our team includes several outstanding reasearch groups, including: UMASS-Dartmouth School for Marine Science & Technology, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI), Provincetown Center for Coastal Studies (PCCS), and the Battelle Memorial Institute.  UMASS and WHOI will collaborate on a study of the potential changes in sediment movement caused by the tidal energy project and potential impacts on benthic communities.  PCCS will evaluate the existing populations of protected species such as seals and sea turtles in Muskeget Channel.  Battelle will provide support in Geographic Information Systems and data analysis.

The project will start in December 2009 and be completed over a two year period.

This project was recently featured in North American Clean Energy.

Robin Gardner Elected to ACA Board of Directors

Ms. Robin Garder was elected to the Association of California Airport’s (ACA) Board of Directors as a Corporate Member.  Ms. Garder has been supporting the ACA in an increasing capacity through committee participation and conference planning over the past two years. 

The purpose of ACA is to “bring together all persons who represent both publicly and privately owned airports, and all others working to foster, promote and assist the development of air transportation in the State of California through the dissemination of aeronautical information, the consideration and solution of various airport and aviation problems, and the fostering of public recognition of airports and the airport management profession.  Information on ACA is located on its website at: http://www.calairports.com/

Carl Hanson Elected to the Fellowship of INCE/USA

HMMH is pleased to announce that Dr. Carl Hanson was elected as Fellow of the Institute of Noise Control Engineering of the USA (INCE/USA).  The formal approval took place at the Board of Director’s meeting in Ottawa during InterNoise 2009

This new Fellowship honors and publicly recognizes INCE members who have “rendered service to the Institute and have made notable or distinguished contributions to the advancement of noise control engineering or notably promoted knowledge of noise control engineering.”

The INCE Award History document is located on its website at: http://www.inceusa.org/

A co-founder of HMMH, Dr. Hanson specializes in noise and vibration control engineering projects for rail transportation. He was lead author of FTA's Transit Noise and Vibration Impact Assessment, and FRA's High Speed Ground Transportation Noise and Vibration Impact Assessment, the guidance manuals for methods used in rail projects in the U.S. He is involved in a wide range of rail projects and has been especially active in high-speed rail and maglev systems. Dr. Hanson serves on the National Academy of Engineering's Committee on Technology for a Quieter America.

TRB’s ACRP Synthesis 16 Released

The Transportation Research Board’s (TRB’s) Airport Cooperative Research Program (ACRP) Synthesis 16 released its Compilation of Noise Programs in Areas Outside DNL 65.  The Synthesis, authored by Mary Ellen Eagan and Robin Gardner of Harris Miller Miller & Hanson Inc. (HMMH), explores alternative actions currently used by airports to address noise outside the DNL (Day–Night Average Noise Level) 65 contour.  The airport practice synthesis was released on August 10th and is available for download at:  http://onlinepubs.trb.org/onlinepubs/acrp/acrp_syn_016.pdf

The topic panel was administered by Gail Staba (FAA) and included:

  • Teresa Arnold, McCarran International Airport
  • Mark Clark, Buffalo Niagara International Airport
  • Patricia Davies, Purdue University School of Mechanical Engineering
  • Chad E. Leqve, Minneapolis-St. Paul Metropolitan Airports Commission
  • Jason Schwartz, Port of Portland (OR)
  • Theodore Soliday, City of Naples Airport Authority
  • Scott Tatro, LAWA Noise Management Division
  • Mary L. Vigilante, Synergy Consultants, Inc.
  • Vicki Catlett, Federal Aviation Administration
  • Joe DiPardo, Federal Aviation Administration
  • Jessica Steinhilber, Airports Council International - North America
  • Christine Gerencher, Transportation Research Board

“Nearly three quarters of respondents (74%) indicated that more than 75% of their airport’s noise complaints come from people who live outside DNL 65…The most common outreach tools to communicate with people exposed to noise outside DNL 65 are: websites, community meetings/forums, online tracking and newsletters.”
Executive Summary

HMMH Receives Florida Department of Transportation Award

The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) presented HMMH with an award for “outstanding achievements in airport aesthetics, safety, and service” for its leading role in the Martin County Airport / Witham Field (Stuart, FL) Noise Abatement Departure Profile (NADP) Demonstration Project.  The award was presented at the Awards Luncheon of the Florida Airports Council (FAC) 2009 Annual Conference in Miami Beach.

In 2008, the Witham Field Airport Noise Advisory Committee (ANAC), identified noise abatement departure profiles as the noise abatement option offering the greatest potential to decrease noise impacts in neighborhoods near primary takeoff and landing flight paths.  To select the optimal procedure for use at Witham Field, ANAC and the project team evaluated alternatives in two primary steps. 

  • HMMH conducted computer modeling of procedures developed by the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA), aircraft manufacturers, and Fair Wind Air Charter, a local fixed base operator.   
  • Then, in a highly unusual step, Far Wind donated aircraft and pilots to conduct test flights of the most promising procedures, while HMMH measured at key locations.  ANAC members observed the test in the cockpit and on ground.  The cockpit observer recorded flight data read out by the copilot.

The measurement and observer assessments confirmed modelled predictions that takeoff noise levels would be reduced by as much as five to seven decibels, through use of the NBAA “close-in” procedure. 

Other key firms assisting the airport staff and ANAC on the demonstration project included Camp Dresser & McKee, Hanson Professional Services, and Fair Wind Air Charter. 

"We are proud to receive industry recognition for our highly successful NADP demonstration project, which shows that citizens and airport users can work as a team to develop noise abatement procedures, and that our technical experts can show the procedures actually reduce noise,"
Michael C. Moon, Airport Director, Martin County Airport / Witham Field

Earlier this year, this highly successful project also won Florida Airports Council (FAC) Noise Abatement & Community Affairs Committee “Noise Abatement Award,” recognizing “a project that reduces the impact of operations on a neighboring community using operational measures.”   

HMMH Helps High Speed Rail Projects Qualify for Funding

As a part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA), the federal government has allocated $8 billion for qualified high speed rail (HSR) projects around the country.  Over 275 HSR projects, with a total price tag of $104 billion, have applied for the $8 billion, meaning that only the most deserving and well-qualified projects will be awarded stimulus grants.

Harris Miller Miller & Hanson Inc. has a key role on HSR projects in California, Florida, New York and the Midwest that are have applied for federal stimulus money.  HMMH is helping to prepare the noise and vibration portion of the environmental documents needed to clear projects to qualify for a portion of the federal money. 

Without proper environmental documentation, projects are at risk of not qualifying for stimulus funding.  Because noise and vibration are such critical elements of the environmental process, it is essential that you have a qualified firm on your team.  As authors of the FRA’s High Speed Ground Transportation Noise and Vibration Guidance Manual, HMMH is the most qualified firm in the country to assess noise and vibration from HSR.

Information on the ARRA can be found at: http://www.recovery.gov/

If your HSR project is applying for federal stimulus funding, contact HMMH to ensure that noise and vibration are properly assessed.

Upcoming FTA Noise and Vibration Guidance Course in Los Angeles, CA

HMMH is pleased to announce the date and location of the next FTA transit noise and vibration training course.  The fall 2009 course will be November 3-5 in Los Angeles, CA and will be hosted by Los Angeles Country Metro.  HMMH staff members Carl Hanson and Lance Meister will be the instructors, bringing over 50 years of combined experience in transit noise and vibration control to the classroom. 

Information regarding the course outline and instructor biographies can be found at www.hmmh.com and registration, which is now open, is available through the National Transit Institute at http://www.ntionline.com/CourseInfo.asp?CourseNumber=TPE16.

The details of the spring 2010 course are being finalized, and an announcement will be forthcoming.

HMMH Participating in Two Upcoming Energy Forums

Mr. Stephen Barrett of Harris Miller Miller & Hanson Inc. (HMMH) is co-chairing and speaking at a one-day seminar on permitting renewable energy projects: Navigating the Complex Landscape of Permitting and Siting in New England.

The seminar is scheduled for September 21st in Boston, MA.  For information, please visit: http://www.lawseminars.com/

Topics include:

  • The state regulatory framework and how pieces fit together
  • Fast track permitting and renewable energy siting reform
  • Logistics for connecting to the grid
  • Strategies and approaches for applicants
  • Local government permitting: The Green Communities Act and zoning
  • Advice from the front lines on wind, solar, biomass and ocean issues 

Mr. Barrett is also moderating a session at the 2nd Annual Ocean Energy for New England Conference on September 17th.  Mr. Barrett’s session is titled “Grid Integration, Community Benefit and Jobs”.  For information, please visit: http://www.mrec.umassd.edu/.

"We are pleased that Steve Barrett will be moderating our panel on Electricity Distribution and Community Benefits. His experience permitting and developing renewable projects in New England will be valuable to our participants."
—John Miller, Executive Director, New England Marine Renewable Center

Michael Carr Joins HMMH

Harris Miller Miller & Hanson Inc. (HMMH) is pleased to announce the addition of Mr. Michael Carr to our Sacramento, California Office.  Mr. Carr, a Senior Consultant at HMMH, provides noise consulting expertise to our transportation projects.  Mr. Carr has more than a dozen years’ experience in noise and vibration control and audio/visual systems, and has conducted numerous environmental assessments for industrial, commercial, and residential projects, as well as CEQA and NEPA compliance projects.  He is an accomplished user of a wide range of modeling tools including the FAA’s Integrated Noise Model (INM), the FHWA’s Traffic Noise Model (TNM), and SoundPLAN.  Other areas of technical expertise include noise and vibration analysis and control of construction equipment and mining operations, as well as underwater acoustics, and bio-acoustics. 

In recent months, Mr. Carr completed an analysis of the impacts from an outdoor amphitheater, and has managed several other architectural acoustics projects on the west coast.

“Michael is a great addition to our office and offers our clients additional depth of expertise” said Eugene Reindel, Vice President and Manager of HMMH’s Sacramento Office.  “We are lucky to have him!”

ICAO Releases Report on Environmental Impacts of Aviation

The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), Committee on Aviation Environmental Protection (CAEP), held a workshop in October 29 – November 2 of 2007 to discuss the environmental impacts of aviation. The Final Report was just released: Assessing Current Scientific Knowledge, Uncertainties, and Gaps in Quantifying Climate Change, Noise and Air Quality Aviation Impacts.

Staff from HMMH participated heavily at both the meeting and in the reporting. Mr. Nick Miller in particular assisted with documenting the Noise Panel work.

The executive summary of the report provides a synoposis of the workshop: “The objective of the workshop was to critically review knowledge and methodological requirements important to the comprehensive evaluation of aviation environmental impacts in a decision-making context. Participants were asked to:

  1. review the current state of knowledge of aviation environmental impacts and best practice approaches for assessing these impacts;
  2. examine key issues, gaps and underlying uncertainties in the comprehensive evaluation of aviation environmental impacts; and
  3. advise ICAO/CAEP on how existing knowledge and best practice approaches may be used to inform policy decisions, and to suggest near term steps that can be taken to improve the knowledge and approaches.

Ultimately, the participants were asked to address the following question: Given current ICAO/CAEP practices, and given what is available and ready (or nearly ready) to use in the world, what are the best next steps for ICAO/CAEP to take with modelling and analysis of aviation environmental impacts?”

Mr. Miller said, "Anyone involved in aviation and its environmental effects, should read this report - at least take a few minutes to read the Executive Summary."

The entire report is available for downloading from the Partnership for AiR Transportation Noise and Emissions Reduction (PARTNER) website at: http://web.mit.edu/aeroastro/partner/reports/caepimpactreport.pdf

Article helps explain new ANSI standard

Mr. Nick Miller (of Harris Miller Miller & Hanson Inc.) with Mr. Paul Schomer (of Schomer and Associates, Inc.) published an article in the April 2009 issue of Acoustics Today that explains the value of the new ANSI sleep awakening standard. It explains the standard and provides examples of how it can help quantify the changes in awakenings likely to occur when night aircraft operations change or when homes are sound insulated.

The article is titled “How many people will be awakened by noise tonight?”.
Citation: Acoustics Today 5(2), 26-31 (April 2009)
Link: http://scitation.aip.org/AT

“Imagine telling a judge or planning body," These increases in noise will cause twenty percent of the population to move ten percent more in their sleep’” (excerpt). The article emphasizes that the use of awakenings, rather than “motility” or physical movement as emphasized in the European Union, is easier to understand for decision-makers and it is awakenings that are predicted by the standard.

“ANSI/ASA S12.9/Part 6--2008 provides a pragmatic general method for estimating the awakening effects of nighttime noise events. By applying this method to the two dose response relationships described in the standard, this article demonstrates the ease of making predictions and illustrates typical relative differences that can be expected between the two relationships” (excerpt).

Stephen Barrett Elected to EBC Board

Harris Miller Miller & Hanson Inc. (HMMH) is pleased to announce Stephen Barrett’s election to the Environmental Business Council of New England (EBC) Board of Directors.

Mr. Barrett has participated in EBC since 1998, in varying capacities, including as the Chairman of the Wind Energy Committee since 2008, and as a moderator and a panelist for the EBC’s renewable energy programs.

The EBC is a nonprofit organization established to support and foster the development of the environmental industry by enhancing business and job growth of both established and emerging environmental and energy businesses.

Visit the EBC website at: http://www.ebcne.org/.  Mr. Barrett recently joined HMMH as Director of Clean Energy.

HMMH Attends Taiwan Aviation Conference

Phil DeVita, HMMH's Director of Air Quality, recently spoke at the International Conference on Aviation and Safety in Taiwan.  Mr. DeVita's presentation focused on greenhouse gas emissions and its implications on aviation in the United States.  At the conference, there was an international panel presenting on aviation topics ranging from aviation safety in Taiwan, lessons learned from the trade liberalization and open sky agreements, airport terminal designs, and airline markets in east Asia.  
Recently, HMMH commenced the noise, air quality, and risk assessment analyses in support of an Environmental Impact Assessment for the addition of a third runway at Kuala Lumpur International airport.

Phil DeVita presenting at an the International Conference of Air Transport and Aviation Safety 2009

HMMH Announces Two Promotions

Harris Miller Miller & Hanson Inc. (HMMH) is pleased to announce the promotions of Jason Ross and Diana Wasiuk.

Mr. Jason Ross has been promoted to Principal Engineer. Mr. Ross manages HMMH’s acoustics and vibration laboratory, has an extensive background in rail and other ground noise and vibration, and has developed data acquisition and analysis software. Mr. Ross has conducted extensive noise and vibration measurements including reference vehicle measurements of vehicles such as aircraft, trains, automobiles and snowmobiles and long-term ambient noise and atmospheric data collection in remote locations such as the Grand Canyon National Park. He is currently managing a locomotive cab noise project and supporting rail noise projects in Houston. Mr. Ross has a degree in Mechanical Engineering and is a registered Professional Engineer in Massachusetts.

Ms. Diana Wasiuk has been promoted to Principal Consultant. Ms. Wasiuk has expertise in airport and airspace planning and has supported many high-profile Environmental Impact Statements (EIS). She has a strong understanding of the National Airspace System and hands-on experience with modeling tools. For several years, she has supported the Joint Planning and Development Office (JPDO) primarily in the area of policy development. Ms. Wasiuk has a Masters degree in Business Administration in Aviation and is an instrument rated private pilot.

Jason Ross has been active in the field of acoustics and vibration for over ten years, all of which have been with HMMH.  Diana Wasiuk joined HMMH in 2007 with nearly ten years in aviation consulting. 

“We are very excited to announce these promotions.  Jason and Diana have very different skill sets and work in very different markets, but they are both high caliber consultants providing excellent service to clients.  In addition, they both have served on HMMH’s Board of Directors and have keen strategic minds that no doubt will help us achieve larger corporate objectives.  I am proud to have them as colleagues.” -- Mary Ellen Eagan, President

HMMH's hires a new Director of Clean Energy

Harris Miller Miller & Hanson Inc. (HMMH) is pleased to announce that Mr. Stephen Barrett has joined the firm to serve as Director of Clean Energy.  Steve’s experience with real estate and industrial projects as well as the power industry will greatly enhance the company's existing environmental and energy capabilities and its growing list of services to clients. Steve will be based out of HMMH's headquarters in Burlington, MA.

Mr. Barrett has a Masters Degree in Environmental Science and Policy from the University of Virginia and is a LEED Accredited Professional.  He has over fifteen years' experience with renewable energy, including wind and solar projects, sustainability planning, LEED analysis and coastal policy and management.  He serves on the Board of Directors for the Environmental Business Council (EBC) of New England and Clean Power Now, and is Chair of the EBC’s Wind Energy Committee..  At HMMH, he will work on environmental assessments, sustainability initiatives, and various climate and energy projects.

“We are thrilled to have Steve join us” said Mary Ellen Eagan, HMMH’s President.  “Many of our clients are interested in developing on-site clean energy capabilities, and Steve will be a valuable resource helping them to navigate the complex regulatory landscape.”

HMMH assists LAWA with a Precedent-setting Study at Van Nuys Airport

In 2005, Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA) retained HMMH to conduct a precedent-setting study at Van Nuys Airport (VNY) under Federal Aviation Regulation Part 161, “Notice and Approval of Noise and Access Restrictions.” The VNY Part 161 is the first to simultaneously address multiple restrictions (a total of nine), several of which would limit noisier aircraft operations.

In July 2006, the Los Angeles Board of Airport Commissioners directed LAWA staff and HMMH to prepare an Environmental Impact Report (EIR), under the California Environmental Quality Act, for a seven-year phaseout of noisier aircraft under a Part 161 provision that exempts (“grandfathers”) rules proposed before October 2, 1990. In March 2009, LAWA released the final EIR for public review and the FAA notified LAWA in writing that a version of the phaseout that exempted Stage 3 and 4 aircraft would be grandfathered, since it was based on a June 1990 Board resolution initiating the phaseout proposal. On May 4, 2009, the Board approved this version of the phaseout (which was an EIR alternative) and recommended the Los Angeles City Council take steps necessary to adopt the phaseout as a City ordinance.


The phaseout will complement LAWA’s other diverse and innovative noise abatement and mitigation initiatives at VNY, and represent the first new airport use restriction in the U.S. since HMMH assisted Naples (Florida) Municipal Airport to ban Stage 2 aircraft operations in November 2000.

HMMH Supports Commercial Space Project

HMMH is assisting the FAA Office of Commercial Space Transportation (AST) under a contract with Aerospace Corporation and the US DOT.  HMMH's acoustical experts cataloged existing aviation noise and sonic boom models and evaluated their applicability to the commercial space industry.  This project supports AST efforts to update environmental guidance provided to applicants for licenses and permits for commercial space operators.

HMMH Team Places in Top 3 for for Schiphol Barrier Competition

SPF: architects placed in the top three in its category in the "Schiphol: Create a Barrier of Silence" competition.  HMMH provided acoustical support to the SPF team.  Out of 97 submissions, nine were shortlisted, three in each of three categories.  The SPF team’s submission, M.A.S.H. (Mobile Absorptive Sound Harness), for the "Design Category" was the only non-European entry to be shortlisted.

The Amsterdam Airport Schiphol held an international design competition for a noise barrier to be built west of Runway 18R-36L (Polder runway).  The Airport explains that “the residents of the town of Hoofddorp-Noord, which is situated close to the airport, have been complaining about ground noise sign the polder runway was opened in 2003.  To find a solution to this problem, Schiphol has decided to allot a 60 hectare triangular area just to the west of the Polder runway, which will be designed in such a way that ground noise will be reduced by 10 decibels.” In addition to providing substantial reduction of low-frequency noise, the contest required the chosen design to be trendsetting, sustainable, innovative, and combine function and form to create a landmark.

The M.A.S.H. design would consist of eight 14-meter high mobile sound barriers, each constructed of recycled tires attached to a steel frame and mounted on railcars. The mobile barriers would be housed within concrete “hangars” with the runway in landing configuration. With the mobile barriers deployed closer to the runway when in takeoff configuration, the hangars would act as a second row of noise barriers, improving the overall noise reduction provided by the system.

Design drawings can be viewed by clicking here.

For more information:

The Florida Airports Council (FAC) Noise Abatement & Community Affairs Committee announced January 15th that the Martin County Airport / Witham Field Noise Abatement Departure Profile (NADP) Demonstration Project won the committee’s 2009 “Noise Abatement Award,” recognizing “an airport / aviation project that reduces the impact of operations on a neighboring community using operational measures.” Harris Miller Miller & Hanson Inc. (HMMH) was a lead member of the team responsible for this highly successful project. In 2008, the Witham Field Airport Noise Advisory Committee (ANAC), identified noise abatement departure profiles as the noise abatement option offering the greatest potential to decrease noise impacts in neighborhoods near primary takeoff and landing flight paths. To select the optimal procedure for use at Witham Field, ANAC and the project team evaluated alternatives in two primary steps.

  • HMMH conducted computer modeling of procedures developed by the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA), aircraft manufacturers, and Fair Wind Air Charter, a local fixed base operator.
  • Then, in a highly unusual step, Far Wind donated aircraft and pilots to conduct test flights of the most promising procedures, while HMMH measured at key locations. ANAC members observed the test in the cockpit and on ground. The cockpit observer recorded flight data read out by the copilot.

The measurement and observer assessments confirmed modelled predictions that takeoff noise levels would be reduced by as much as five to seven decibels, through use of the NBAA “close-in” procedure. The airport, ANAC, and project team are continuing to work together to prepare and distribute pilot education materials to maximize awareness and effectiveness of the preferred procedure.

“We are proud to receive industry recognition for our highly successful NADP demonstration project, which shows that citizens and airport users can work as a team to develop noise abatement procedures, and that our technical experts can show the procedures actually reduce noise,” said Michael C. Moon, Airport Director, Martin County Airport / Witham Field.

Other key firms assisting the airport staff and ANAC on the demonstration project included Camp Dresser & McKee, Hanson Professional Services, and Fair Wind Air Charter.

HMMH set to present at UC Aviation Environmental Conference

HMMH staff will be presenting or moderating three sessions at this year’s Annual UC Symposium on Aviation Noise and Air Quality, sponsored by the University of California Davis Air Quality Research Center.  This year’s agenda is: Revolution in Aviation “The Magical Mystery Flight of Environmental Sustainability”.  HMMH presentation topics include:

  • Regulatory Environmental Policies 401, Part 161 (Ted Baldwin)
  • Rountable: Training and Recruiting (Robert Miller)
  • Health Impacts of Aviation Noise and Emissions (Mary Ellen Eagan)

HMMH is also a conference exhibitor and sponsor.  Mary Ellen Eagan, HMMH President, has been involved with planning the symposium since the late-1990’s.  HMMH has been involved with the conference since its inception. 

The conference was scheduled for March 1-4, 2009, in Palm Springs, California.

FICAN Releases Recommendation for use of ANSI Standard

The Federal Interagency Committee on Aviation Noise (FICAN) released its recommendation for the use of a new calculation procedure for estimating behavioral awakenings from aircraft noise.  The calculation procedure is contained in the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) Standard S12.9-2008, Part 6: “Methods for Estimation of Awakenings Associated with Outdoor Noise Events Heard in Homes.”  ANSI S12.9-2008 provides a method for predicting sleep disturbance in terms of percent awakenings or numbers of people awakened from a full night of aircraft noise events. Prior to this standard, available information on sleep disturbance gave only the likelihood that an average person might be awakened by one noise event.

The calculation method is based in part on analyses published by Nick Miller and Grant Anderson in the Journal of Noise Control Engineering: “Alternative analysis of sleep-awakening data,” Noise Control Eng. J. 55 (2), 2007 March-April.  They used previously collected sleep disturbance data to develop a practical method for examining the awakening effects of night time aircraft operations.

“Now we have an accepted method for quantifying the effects of night time noise.  We can answer questions like: How beneficial will sound insulation be in terms of reduced awakenings? How many fewer people are likely to be awakened when Optimized Descent Procedures (ODPs) are implemented? Will the introduction of nighttime cargo operations cause large increases in awakenings? What are the likely effects of added early morning departures – how many more people are likely to be awakened?  In short, this method provides a new tool to more effectively evaluate the effects of noise on people, and implications of projects at airports." said Nick Miller, Senior Vice President.

Midway Airport Leased by Private Operator

The City of Chicago has selected the Midway Investment and Development Corporation to operate Midway Airport under a 99-year lease.  HMMH is pleased to be part of the Corporation team!

HMMH assisted MidCo with an evaluation of current and potential noise issues at Midway and provided guidance on potential changes to federal noise policy.  “We are most excited to be part of a new business model for operating airports in the U.S.”, said Mary Ellen Eagan, HMMH’s President.

For more information, please visit: http://www.faa.gov/airports_airtraffic/airports/airport_obligations/privatization/media/mdw_factsheet.pdf or http://www.reuters.com/article/pressRelease/idUS241707+30-Sep-2008+PRN20080930

HMMH Wins Multi-Year Contract with Volpe

Harris Miller Miller & Hanson Inc. as part of the Boeing Team was recently awarded a multi-year, multi-million dollar contract to provide services in the field of Communication, Navigation, and Surveillance (CNS) as well as Traffic Management (TM) Systems to the John A. Volpe National Transportation Systems Center.

The Volpe Center’s focus is on research and innovation in all areas of transportation.  Volpe utilizes a combination of Federal and contractor personnel to marshal the broad range and quantity of skills needed to perform sponsoring agencies’ projects.  By establishing a “pool” of professional technical/scientific resources, the Volpe Center can respond to uncertain, long-range requirements of its technical programs in a timely and effective manner.

“Our team will constitute an important part of Volpe Center’s resources, and will provide high-technology capabilities and skills targeted to the Volpe Center’s programmatic requirements in the areas of CNS and TM Systems” said Vinnie Khera, Director of HMMH’s DC Office  and Advanced Programs. “HMMH has been successfully supporting the Joint Planning & Development Office and this win further expands our role as a partner to the federal government in support of planning and development efforts for the Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen)”.

New Title 21 Reports Available for Oakland International Airport

The Oakland International Airport (OAK) approved on January 31, 2008 the first Title 21 quarterly noise monitoring report from Harris Miller Miller & Hanson Inc. (HMMH). Since then HMMH has delivered two addition draft reports, which together provide the results of the first three quarters of 2007. The Title 21 quarterly reports utilized HMMH’s RealContoursTM processing software to accurately input every flight track from nearly all days to model the annual aircraft operations at OAK each quarter with the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) Integrated Noise Model (INM).  The airport’s noise impact boundary, depicted using the Title 21 standard 65 dB Community Noise Equivalent Level (CNEL), includes no noise sensitive properties.

“The 2007 Title 21 noise monitoring reports provide information and a noise contour that accurately reflects the aircraft operations at Oakland International Airport. The airport remains a fully noise mitigated airport and continues to exceed the California reporting requirements for Title 21,” said Eugene Reindel, HMMH Project Manager.

As part of the on-call services, HMMH gathered the flight and noise data, conducted the noise analysis of aircraft ground and related flight operations, and integrated all documentation and findings into a comprehensive multi-paged report. As Alameda County provides the reports to the State, they are available at the CalTrans Aviation Offices.  They are also available on the Oakland International Airport website at: http://www.oaklandairport.com/noise/noise_monitoring_reports.shtml

HMMH Continues to Expand its Staff and Capabilities 

Harris Miller Miller & Hanson Inc.(HMMH) is pleased to announce that Mr. Philip DeVita has joined the firm to serve as Director of HMMH’s Air Quality practice.  Phil’s experience with transportation and industrial projects as well as with the power industry will greatly enhance the company’s existing air quality capabilities and its growing list of services to clients.  Phil will be based out of HMMH’s headquarters in Burlington, MA.

Mr. DeVita has a Masters Degree in Environmental Studies from the University of Massachusetts and is a Certified Consulting Meteorologist with eighteen years’ experience in air quality measurement, modeling, and mitigation programs.  At HMMH, he will work on air quality impact assessments, dispersion modeling, carbon footprinting, and various alternative energy projects.  

“This is terrific!  We have worked hard to find someone of Phil’s caliber.  Just when the world is opening its eyes to the importance of climate change, Phil comes to us with expertise in air quality that matches that of our noise and vibration and airport and airspace planning services.” said Robert Miller, one of HMMH’s founders and head of the company’s Aviation Services Group.

HMMH Goes Green

HMMH is dedicated to operating in an environmentally  responsible manner and to raise awareness among clients and staff of environmental issues and challenges.  Our recent efforts to reduce the company's environmental footprint include reducing current travel levels, offsetting emissions, using recycled office products, managing our power consumption, maintaining on-site recycling services, and providing education and volunteer opportunities for staff.