Case study: modelling the impact of high-rise developments on airport comms

July 10, 2023

As our airspace becomes more congested and demand for housing grows, the aviation sector is turning to ATDI to understand the impact of new housing developments on aeronautical equipment in the vicinity of airports.

As part of the planning procedure, developers are required to undertake an analysis of the impact of proposed new developments on airport communications. These studies looked at the impact on primary surveillance radars, secondary surveillance radars, VOR and ILS stations.

To ensure these studies provide a real-life picture of the impact, the calculations are performed at different altitudes from the target. For example, the radars were modelling at 800 ft. (243.8m) / 1 500 ft. (457.2m) / 2 000 ft. (609.6m) and 2 500 ft. (762.0m) AMSL. For the VOR station, calculations were undertaken at different altitudes of aircraft: for example, 2 000 ft. (609.6m) and 3 000 ft. (914.4m) AMSL.

The operational areas around the airport are displayed as SHP polygons. Airport authorities often supply map data for the airfield, which is imported directly into HTZ and used to replicate the airport layout.  The proposed new buildings are overlaid onto the maps for modelling. These maps are used to show a ‘before and after’ scenario, to compare the difference based on a ‘worst-case’ scenario.

The results indicate the impact of the new building/s on the area covered at each target height considered for coverage differences greater than 1 dB.

HTZ is used extensively to model the impact of 5G towers on aeronautical radars and to model the impact of new terminal buildings on ground communications coverage.

AGL Aviation Consultants
AGL Aviation is a dedicated aviation consultancy. Their services enable stakeholders to manage operational challenges, regulation (compliance, development) and infrastructure developments (from initial plans to design and from airspace to airports). So whether that’s a new airport that needs to be unified into the existing airspace or a real-estate project that needs to be built below aviation infrastructure, AGL provides expert advice on how to manage and mitigate risk and guarantee project success.

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