Environmental Aspects of Aircraft and Airfield Deicing - An Air Force Perspective
AIR FORCE CENTER FOR ENGINEERING AND THE ENVIRONMENT DALLAS TX REGIONAL ENVIRONMENTAL OFFICE
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The Air Force AF uses many deicinganti-icing compounds on its aircraft and airfields. And several new compounds have been proposed for future use because they are said to be more environmentally friendly or less corrosive to aircraft parts and pavements. A comparison of the oxygen demands of various de-icing and anti-icing compounds is presented in an effort to determine their relative environmental impacts. A theoretical approach and various manufacturers data were used to place the compounds on an even footing. For valid comparisons, the AF must request that BODCOD tests be run on all compounds at equivalent concentrations using the same units. Then this data, along with application rates for the same temperature range, can be used to make comparisons on which deicing compounds have the least environmental impact. The EPA suggests that COD, rather than BOD, is the best test for deicing compounds because it captures total oxygen demand, is not affected by additives, is simple to conduct, can be measured in real time, and is not temperature dependent. Other environmental aspects of aircraft and airfield deicing, such as storm water and wastewater permitting requirements affecting deicing activities, are discussed. A partial summary of the 2008 Air Force survey of deicing practices at its installations for deicing seasons 2005 through 2008 is provided. The survey shows the number of aircraft deiced versus the number of sorties flown during a deicing season. The amounts of aircraft and airfield deicing compounds used by the AF are compared to those used at commercial airports. The AF deicing footprint on the environment is much lower than that of commercial airports.
- Terminal Flight Facilities
- Atmospheric Physics