Environmental Evaluation

Environmental and noise modeling methods - noise and emissions analysis map

In-depth knowledge of airspace operations and unique set of tools for measuring environmental impacts

ATAC applies expertise gained from its extensive aviation model development experience as well as various airspace, airport capacity, and environmental modeling research efforts to analyze the environmental impacts of a wide range of airport and airspace modifications. With this multi-discipline capability, the environmental consequences of proposed actions can be evaluated throughout the project cycle and can be evaluated in lock step with other impacts such as those on airport capacity or airspace efficiency. Any trade-offs due to such impacts can also be quickly and comprehensively determined.

ATAC has a major role in the development of the Aviation Environmental Design Tool (AEDT), the FAA's environmental modeling software, spanning local and global noise and emissions analyses. ATAC's FAA-funded research efforts aimed at improving the capabilities of AEDT keep it at the forefront of aviation environmental modeling methods and practices. These combined factors enable ATAC to develop and apply software tools and analysis methods to address environmental analysis questions beyond the scope of publicly available tools in a technically defensible manner. Such tools and methods include:

  • Modeling the noise and fuel-burn benefits of Continuous Descent Approaches (CDAs)
  • Animating aircraft flight trajectories and corresponding sound exposure or maximum sound level contours
  • Directly linking airport capacity modeling results with airport noise modeling inputs
  • Generation of number above contours

Metroplex logoATAC serves as the prime consultant and contractor for the FAA's Optimization of Airspace in the Metroplex (OAPM) Environmental Analyses conducted under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) for multiple site locations around the United States. ATAC is providing the FAA with the NEPA documentation, noise analysis, and policy guidance to establish the standards for aviation airspace environmental practice. ATAC is committed to completing the necessary NEPA documentation for the Metroplex projects (previously called OAPM) and assisting the FAA in successfully establishing the protocols for this type of environmental work as well as operations analysis, procedure design analysis, and fuel burn analysis.

ATAC has applied its expertise to a variety of aviation environmental modeling tasks. These efforts include:
  • Environmental assessment for a simultaneous offset instrument approach and precision runway monitor project at San Francisco International Airport (SFO)
  • San Francisco International airfield development planning
  • Los Angeles International Airport southside airfield and New Large Aircraft (NLA) studies
  • Port of Oakland airfield and airspace modeling in support of Supplemental Environmental Impact Report (SEIR)
  • Alamogordo-White Sands Regional Airport environmental assessment
The studies performed by ATAC have addressed such issues as:
  • Airspace modifications
  • Number above noise calculations to support sleep disturbance analyses
  • Runway and taxi-way reconfigurations, including single-event taxi operation noise analyses

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