The KDC study Increased Schiphol Sustainability focused on the identification of near term solutions to maintain airport capacity under adverse weather conditions. The study was performed as a sequel to two earlier studies which also touched on the same subject but with a different focus: the studies Increased Groundhandling Capacity and Increased Landing Capacity (KDC, 2007).
The study Increased Landing Capacity focused on the runway capacity under low visibility, “BZO-C”, conditions (ILS Cat III conditions and Runway Visual Range between 200 – 350 meters).
The study Increased Groundhandling Capacity focused on studying expected bottlenecks in the groundhandling operation in case two landing runways and two departure runways are operated at the same time. The study Increased Groundhandling Capacity also investigated capacity issues during low visibility operations, but not in great detail. After completion of both studies, it was concluded that additional analysis of groundhandling capacity was needed to draw conclusions about increasing capacity during “BZO-C”.
The challenge for the study was to identify measures which can be implemented in the near term (2012) to improve the groundhandling capacity. The focus on 2012 implementation excluded solutions which would require new technology to be developed.
The project team initially performed a delay minutes analysis for the various visibility conditions which have been defined for Schiphol. The delay minutes analysis was used to determine the visibility condition for which near term solutions will be most beneficial. Subsequently an inventory was made of near term potential measures to improve the sustainability of airport capacity. This inventory was done by means of workshops and candidate solutions were selected as part of a long list of promising solutions.
The ISS project team recommended a number of measures for early implementation:
- Runway Occupancy Time and ILS Sensitive Area Awareness campaign
- Extension of Yellow-Green alternate lighting on runway exits
- Adjustment of runway and taxiway signage
- Publication of a training bulletin addressing premature automatic handovers of aircraft on the runway to ground control.
It is recommended that further research in the area of increased sustainability focuses on technological innovations for the medium and longer term, such as the use of electronic flight bag and synthetic vision.