Atmospheric Turbulence Effects on Near-Ground Wake Vortex Demise
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Atmospheric Turbulence Effects on Near-Ground Wake Vortex Demise

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  • English

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    • NTL Classification:
      NTL-AVIATION-Air Traffic Control;NTL-AVIATION-Airports and Facilities;NTL-AVIATION-AVIATION;NTL-AVIATION-Aviation Safety/Airworthiness;
    • Abstract:
      The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) have been working jointly on a phased approach to implement wake avoidance solutions designed to safely reduce wake turbulence separation standards in the United States (Bryant et. al. 2007 and Lang et. al. 2007). Currently the FAA-NASA partnership is pursuing mid-term solutions characterized as wind-dependent procedures for Closely Spaced Parallel Runway (CSPR) airports involving Heavy and B757 category aircraft (Lang et. al. 2007). The program has entered a field data collection phase for, amongst other things, wind and vortices from departing aircraft as the necessary building blocks to construct a comprehensive safety assessment of the new procedures. From the wake vortex measurement perspective, particular emphasis has been placed on vortices generated at around two initial vortex spacing altitudes otherwise commonly known as the near-ground-effect (NGE) regime (Robins and Delisi, 2001). The reason is twofold: Firstly, the near the ground region is considered the more critical area in the event of a wake encounter as the aircraft would have less altitude to recover from an upset. Secondly, in the NGE regime, general knowledge of wake transport and demise, therefore the reliability of the wake models, are less matured compared to their counterparts for out-of-ground effect (OGE) regime. In addition, because of interest in CSPR operations, the downwind vortex (i.e., the vortex that would travel towards the adjacent runway under zero or light crosswind component (Dee and Nicholas, 1968 and Köpp, 1999)) dynamics merit an in-depth investigation. For this purpose, wake, wind and atmospheric turbulence measurements near the ground were made concurrently. The current paper is to examine the general question of downwind vortex demise and the mechanisms involved using the data collected to support midterm solutions.
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