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Approaches to Evaluating the Effects of VFR Towers on Flow and Safety at Airports,
NATIONAL BUREAU OF STANDARDS WASHINGTON D C
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The Federal Aviation Administration is reviewing its criteria now based on annual traffic levels for airports to be eligible for the installation of VFR towers. In support of that review, a study was commissioned to seek mathematical methods and models for measuring the effects of a VFR tower on flow and safety at airports with different traffic volumes. The report discusses a variety of methodologies, viewpoints, and concepts. The first version of a mathematical model, intended to portray a towers ability to expedite flow by abridging the full operation sequence, was formulated and exercised in illustrative calculations. Available aggregated data are not adequate for identifying functional relations between collision rates and activity levels at tower and non-tower airports however a novel statistical approach has established the association between tower-presence and lower collision rates on a firmer basis than before. More knowledge is needed concerning pilots information needs, relative to potential hazards, which go unmet in the absence of a VFR tower as an initial contribution along this line, a computerized model was developed to air in studying the pilots time-varying field of vision as limited by cockpit geometry and other structural obstructions. Author
APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE