Airport emissions reductions from reduced thrust takeoff operations

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Title: Airport emissions reductions from reduced thrust takeoff operations
Authors: Koudis, GS
Hu, J
Majumdar, A
Jones, R
Stettler, MEJ
Item Type: Journal Article
Abstract: Given forecast aviation growth, many airports are predicted to reach capacity and require expansion. However, pressure to meet air quality regulations emphasises the importance of efficient ground-level aircraft activities to facilitate growth. Operational strategies such as reducing engine thrust setting at takeoff can reduce fuel consumption and pollutant emissions; however, quantification of the benefits and consistency of its use have been limited by data restrictions. Using 3,336 high-resolution flight data records, this paper analyses the impact of reduced thrust takeoff at London Heathrow. Results indicate that using reduced thrust takeoff reduces fuel consumption, nitrogen oxides (NOX) and black carbon (BC) emissions by 1.0-23.2%, 10.7-47.7%, and 49.0-71.7% respectively, depending on aircraft-engine combinations relative to 100% thrust takeoff. Variability in thrust settings for the same aircraft-engine combination and dependence on takeoff weight (TOW) is quantified. Consequently, aircraft-engine specific optimum takeoff thrust settings that minimise fuel consumption and pollutant emissions for different aircraft TOWs are presented. Further reductions of 1.9%, 5.8% and 6.5% for fuel consumption, NOX and BC emissions could be achieved, equating to reductions of approximately 0.4%, 3.5% and 3.3% in total ground level fuel consumption, NOX and BC emissions. These results quantify the contribution that reduced thrust operations offer towards achieving industry environmental targets and air quality compliance, and imply that the current implementation of reduced thrust takeoff at Heathrow is near optimal, considering operational and safety constraints.
Issue Date: 24-Feb-2017
Date of Acceptance: 13-Feb-2017
ISSN: 1879-2340
Publisher: Elsevier
Start Page: 15
End Page: 28
Journal / Book Title: Transportation Research Part D: Transport and Environment
Volume: 52
Issue: Part A
Copyright Statement: © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (
Sponsor/Funder: Lloyd's Register Foundation
Natural Environment Research Council [2006-2012]
Funder's Grant Number: No reference provided
Keywords: airport operations
fuel consumption
environmental impact
aircraft emissions
reduced thrust takeoff
Logistics & Transportation
1205 Urban And Regional Planning
1507 Transportation And Freight Services
0502 Environmental Science And Management
Publication Status: Published
Appears in Collections:Faculty of Engineering
Civil and Environmental Engineering

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