Airport infrastructure planning to support sustainable aviation

Fleming, Iain Robert George and Chikumbanje, Madalitso and Fong, Chung Man and Syed, Mazheruddin Hussain and Burt, Graeme and Webster, Kirsty (2022) Airport infrastructure planning to support sustainable aviation. In: Towards Sustainable Aviation Summit 2022, 3AF, 2022-10-18 - 2022-10-20, Centre de Congrès Pierre Baudis.

[thumbnail of Flemming-etal-3AF-2022-Airport-infrastructure-planning-to-support-sustainable]
Text. Filename: Flemming_etal_3AF_2022_Airport_infrastructure_planning_to_support_sustainable.pdf
Accepted Author Manuscript
License: Strathprints license 1.0

Download (1MB)| Preview


Decarbonisation of the air transport sector is expected to be delivered through a combination of efficient aircraft and engine designs, low-carbon fuels such as sustainable aviation fuels (SAF), and zero carbon technologies, such as electric and hydrogen propulsion. The move toward low-carbon fuels and technologies is expected to pose a significant challenge to airport infrastructure requirements. The introduction of novel aircraft technologies will require complementary ground infrastructure at airports capable of supporting the transition at pace. Focused on electric flight, this paper proposes a holistic methodology that utilises historic airport logs, technological progression, along with aircraft mission feasibility to assess the airport infrastructure requirements over time. The methodology incorporates technology uncertainty and its effect on sustainable aviation. The main objective within the methodology is to project associated infrastructure requirements and fleet energy costs to enable planning support for decarbonisation transition pathways. The paper demonstrates the use of the proposed methodology using real-world historic flight logs, identifying the progression in energy demand and ground infrastructural requirements in five-year horizons up to 2050. The methodology presented in this paper and associated results will help airport operators, airline operators, and policymakers by providing planning support through such technology pathway projection.