Runway friction - Articles and news items
Issue 1 2010, Past issues / 22 February 2010 /
ASTM International is one of the largest voluntary standards development organisations in the world. It is a trusted source for technical standards for materials, products, systems and services. Known for their high technical quality and market relevancy, ASTM International standards have an important role in the information infrastructure that guides design, manufacturing and trade in the global economy.
ASTM Committee E17 on Vehicle-Pavement Systems, who will be celebrating their 50th Anniversary in 2010, was formed in 1960 to bring together many of the worlds experts in friction and develop standards for data collection, equipment design and data analysis. The Committee’s scope of work includes ‘The stimulation of research dissemination of knowledge and development of principles, techniques and standards for Pavement Management Technologies, Vehicle Pavement Interactions, and Intelligent Vehicle/Highway Systems.’
The Committee, with a current membership of 178, has 11 technical subcommittees that have jurisdiction of over 40 standards, published in the Annual Book of ASTM Standards, Volume 4.03. (more…)
Issue 1 2009, Past issues / 7 February 2009 /
With today’s technology, the measurement of ‘friction’ can be readily and accurately determined whether it be in a vehicle engine, wheel bearing, or of more immediate attention, the interface between a moving vehicle tire and the travelled pavement surface. In regards to ground vehicle and aircraft operations, the problem is not one of accuracy but one of timeliness. Mother Nature can change a dry, high friction pavement surface into an icy, low friction surface in a matter of minutes. The ground vehicle runway friction value measured 30 minutes earlier may have no relevancy to current pavement friction conditions. Hence the importance of giving pilots the time of the friction measurement as well as the actual value.
The friction measurement usage by aircraft operators is further complicated by the number and variety of factors influencing the magnitude of friction at the tire/pavement interface including vehicle speed, wind direction and speed, tire pressure, type and tread design, pavement texture, surface contaminant type and amount, brake system efficiency and operator skill. It is truly a wonder that the travelling public is so successful in getting from point A to point B without incident. (more…)
Issue 5 2008, Past issues / 30 September 2008 /
ASTM International is one of the largest voluntary standards development organisations in the world, a trusted source for technical standards for materials, products, systems and services. Known for their high technical quality and market relevancy, ASTM International standards have an important role in the information infrastructure that guides design, manufacturing and trade in the global economy.
ASTM Committee E17 on Vehicle-Pavement Systems was formed in 1960 to bring together many of the world experts in friction and to develop standards for data collection, equipment design and data analysis. Since 1960, the Committee has expanded its efforts beyond friction to include roughness, pavement management and intelligent vehicle/highway systems. By sponsoring frequent technical symposiums at their semi-annual meetings, which usually take place in June and December, Committee E17 promotes useful discussions and data dissemination, which results to consensus improvements in measuring techniques, equipment hardware/software and data analysis. (more…)
Issue 4 2008, Past issues / 1 August 2008 /
This article serves as the ‘coming out’ event for the International Friction Pavement Association (IFPA)
The IFPA was created to focus beyond engineering and manufacturing, and bring in representation as we have done with our Board of Directors: someone from the airlines (Southwest) with a pilot’s perspective; someone from the manufacturing side (Boeing); and others to begin looking at runway friction testing, from the end-users’ perspective. An initial goal is to host next spring, at a new testing facility, a workshop for industry to begin working through issues and exploring standardised friction testing practices.
As IFPA founder Tim Neubert attests, “Our focus is trying to help an industry we’re involved in to be able to get reliable data when they need it; when that snow starts falling or rain starts accumulating, they can report valued data for that inbound or departing aircraft.” (more…)
Issue 2 2008, Past issues / 28 March 2008 /
On 6 February 1958, an aircraft crashed whilst making its third attempt to take off from Munich’s Reim Airport. Twenty-three of the passengers and crew on board were killed. After a lengthy investigation, the cause of the accident was identified as slush on the runway. Fifty years later, this event lingers in the public consciousness because some of the casualties were star players from Manchester United Football Club. It is also remembered in the aviation world for the important part it played in the study of contaminant drag and its effect on aircraft tyres, as well as in the wider context of the overall assessment of runway friction, work that still continues today.
In the UK, the aerodrome licence holder is responsible for assuring adequate runway surface friction characteristics are maintained. ICAO Annex 14 Volume 1 contains Standards and Recommended Practices (SARPs) relating to runway friction and these are interpreted and applied in the UK, as set out in the CAA’s publications CAP 168, ‘Licensing of Aerodromes’ and CAP 683 ‘The Assessment of Runway Surface Friction for Maintenance Purposes.’ (more…)
Issue 3 2007, Past issues / 7 June 2007 /
During the past year, several new runway friction measurement activities have been initiated and progress has been made to improve measurement equipment, techniques and recommended procedures. The purpose of this article is to acquaint you, the reader, with recent developments including: (more…)
Issue 2 2007, Past issues / 3 April 2007 /
The Metropolitan Airports Commission (MAC) is a public corporation of the State of Minnesota, USA. With staff of approximately 550 employees, the MAC owns and operates MSP and six reliever airports in the Twin Cities metropolitan area. Operating much like a private business, the MAC pays expenses from the revenues it generates from airline rates and charges, parking, concessions and building and ground rent. The MAC has fifteen commissioners, thirteen of which are appointed by the Governor of Minnesota, with the other two being representatives of the mayors of Minneapolis and St. Paul.
MSP is located on approximately 3400 acres, between the cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul. With 127 aircraft gates at two terminals, MSP moved 35.6 million passengers in 2006. The airport ranked 15th busiest in the world for operations with 475,668 movements – more than 1300 per day. The airfield consists of four runways, two being parallel (12L/30R and 12R/30L), one crosswind (4/22) and one north-south (17/35), which opened in the Autumn of 2005 to provide much needed relief to the parallel runways. (more…)
Issue 1 2007, Past issues / 6 February 2007 /
Wet and icy runways are the leading cause of landing accidents worldwide. But, while timely and accurate information about runway surface conditions is critical, methods for assessing weather conditions vary from one country to another, and information communicated to pilots can vary from one airport to another. In some countries, friction measurement is conducted for runway maintenance purposes only and the information is not passed on to air traffic controllers or pilots.
The Joint Winter Runway Friction Measurement Program (JWRFMP), an international initiative supported by more than 30 organisations in 12 countries, including the U.S. Canada, France, Germany, Norway, and Japan, has conducted extensive tests on aircraft braking performance and runway friction measuring devices on winter contaminated surfaces. One of the significant findings of this program was that aircraft braking performance correlates well with the friction measured by a decelerometer-based device on winter contaminated runway test surfaces.
Findings from the JWRFMP have led to improved aeronautical guidance material in Canada, where winter is a major preoccupation. A decelerometer is used to determine with some accuracy the effect that a contaminant has on reducing the surface friction of a runway and to provide meaningful information to pilots. The readings taken by this instrument are averaged and reported as a Canadian Runway Friction Index (CRFI). (more…)
Issue 1 2005, Past issues / 16 March 2005 /
The development of an international runway friction index is a testament to international cooperation within the aviation industry. Now with most technical milestones passed, Angelo Boccanfuso reports from the latest IMAPCR that further consensus on practical implementation and funding are now needed.
Not only is there no common indicator of contaminated runway conditions in use worldwide, but winter procedures vary from airport to airport, and from country to country. After winter testing spanning a period of eight years, the Joint Winter Runway Friction Measurement Program (JWRFMP), a cooperative international initiative coordinated by Transport Canada has reached a major turning point in the decades-old search for a way to measure runway friction and present the data to pilots in a useful way. (more…)