Aircraft noise continues to be one of the main concerns and problems for airport managers. While the technology for aircraft continue to evolve and become quieter, the growing amount of air traffic globally means that more and more people are exposed to air traffic noise. According to a recent World Health Organization report, aircraft noise is in the top 3 sources of noise exposure in the EU, following road and rail traffic.
Although most people are used to road and rail noise, exposure to aircraft noise at the same level can often be considered more annoying due to the tonality and the distribution of the noise. This creates a significant challenge for airport managers in identifying noise sources, reducing potential annoyances that can be attributed to their airport and managing relationships with surrounding communities.
For an organization like Aena who manage 46 airports in Spain including Madrid and Barcelona, working with their communities and providing transparent policies and communications has been key to their success. With 7 runways and more than 700,000 operations per year between those airports alone, Aena needed a reliable and trusted third-party solution to help monitor and manage their noise but most of all, provide data that they could trust.
EMS Brüel & Kjær has long been a partner of Aena. With ENAC accreditation (National Accreditation Entity recognized in more than 90 countries), it is the testing laboratory for uninterrupted monitoring of environmental noise levels within the airport environment according to ISO 20906 – a standard for unattended monitoring of aircraft sound in the vicinity of airports.
What does this mean? ENAC accreditation in ISO 20906 represents a guarantee for airports in relation to the data quality provided by EMS Brüel & Kjær. As many know, ISO certification isn’t easy and ISO 20906 isn’t straightforward. The ISO established principles of detection, identification and classification of aeronautical events between detected aircraft and other aspects that could potentially create noise. It also defined that minimum reporting must include noise indicators, weather conditions and aeronautical information.
The bottom line is that working with a company that is standardized on ISO 20906 provides airports and its surrounding communities with confidence in the data provided by the systems. For more information about the accreditation process download our latest paper, Accredited Noise Monitoring, by completing the form on this page.
Author: María Jesús Ballesteros, Deputy Project Manager at EMS Brüel & Kjær