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chapterposted on 23.11.2012, 11:58 by Mike Hirst, David Pitfield
The airport design process requires considerable knowledge of local terrain, and local weather conditions. Knowledge of local weather phenomenon, such as persistent fog, or excessive turbulence, might rule out certain locations. Wind data is also taken into account to determine runway orientation, because aircraft prefer to take-off and land into the wind. Runway length requirements arise from knowledge of aircraft performance, and this can reflect local conditions too, such as airfield elevation. The volume of expected traffic can influence the number of runways, as multiple runways can be essential to achieve necessary levels of capacity. Thus the airport runway layout can be drawn, and assessed, to determine where it fits in overall. The one remaining operational aspect is to ensure that the site selected, when statutory 'imaginary surfaces' are constructed around it, does not invite risk because of terrain and other obstacles. [...continues]
- Architecture, Building and Civil Engineering