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Latest news

World Aviation Day

Amsterdam, 17 December 2014. Senior Specialist Fer Mooren explains how NACO, a company of Royal HaskoningDHV is ahead of the field in aviation innovation.

World Cities Day

Did you know that Zambia is recognised as one of Sub-Saharan Africa’s most urbanised countries with nearly half the population living in urban areas?

World Maritime Day

Did you know that World Maritime Day has been celebrated for 36 years? In that time the importance of the maritime industry to our global economy has grown immensely, reflected by the growth of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) from 21 member states to 170 member states.

Africa’s urban green legacy

Cape Town, 11 Sep 2014. By 2030 an expected 40% of Africans will be living in cities. How do we build an African Urban Green Legacy?

A human approach to South African growth

Johannesburg, 19 August 2014. As Africa increasingly integrates with the global economy, it is faced with the significant and complex challenge of balancing the sustainable use of its natural resources with the need for rapid economic growth and social progress.

Climate Resilience through Early Warning in Ghana

Johannesburg, 17 July 2014. International engineering and project management consultancy Royal HaskoningDHV, in cooperation with consultancy firm HKV, has been appointed by the United Nations Development Programme for the provision of services to develop disaster risk and early warning systems in Ghana.

Take action. Inspire change.

Johannesburg, 17 July 2014. All over the world, nations have respected and admired Mandela for his unfailing integrity, his belief in democracy and collective leadership.  He had the talent to inspire friend and foe alike.  Children, world-leaders, academics, pop stars, the underprivileged, the wealthy, the frail – he is loved and revered to an unmatched degree.

Rwanda Ready for Sustainable Sugarcane Production

Johannesburg, 11 July 2014. Known as ‘the land of a thousand hills’, Rwanda is famous for its lush highlands, deep valleys and Mountain Gorillas. But it’s the low-lying land currently causing concern among the country’s rapidly increasing population.

The Great Walk and DecongestSandton

Johannesburg, 17 June 2014. Joining Cycology and the Green Building Council of South Africa is Royal HaskoningDHV, an international consultant company, in a campaign to create awareness of green mobility alternatives with a focus on electric bicycle commuting and the development of cycling routes throughout Sandton.

Half-way point: Climate Change Vulnerability Assessment for the Swartland

5 June 2014, The half-way point has been reached in the important climate change vulnerability assessment currently underway by Royal HaskoningDHV for The Swartland Municipality, on the Cape West Coast. The project involves the towns and surrounding areas of Malmesbury, Moorreesburg, Yzerfontein, and Darling.

Royal HaskoningDHV goes the extra mile to get the job done!

Johannesburg, 8 June 2014. Despite living in the age of high technology and convenience, sometimes situations demand a more traditional approach to accessing essential information.

Invasive Species Management

Johannesburg, 22 May 2014. Did you know that Southern Africa’s landscape is one of the most globally diverse? Its Cape Floral Kingdom for example, is one of only six floral kingdoms in the world. This ecosystem supports 9,600 recorded plant species, 70% of which are found nowhere else on the planet. Yet this precious asset is under threat by invasive alien plant species.

Welcome to Royal HaskoningDHV

World Aviation Day

 

 

Take Off with Innovation

 

 

Amsterdam, 17 December 2014. Senior Specialist Fer Mooren explains how NACO, a company of Royal HaskoningDHV is ahead of the field in aviation innovation.

If you think airport pavement engineering sounds predictable and straightforward, think again. Deep in the heart of The Hague sit some of the most interesting and forward-thinking projects in the aviation industry.


Our sister company, NACO, is one of the world’s leading airport consultancies and recently, thanks to the commitment of Amsterdam Airport Schiphol, it’s been climbing skyward with industry-changing ideas and projects.


Recycled Runways for Large Savings


When you think of reducing aircraft emissions and environmental impact for instance, you’d be forgiven for ignoring the role of the runway in helping secure these reductions. But now, as Senior Specialist Fer Mooren points out, runway and taxiway pavements are set to make big contributions to airport sustainability: “Raw materials for pavement construction are scarce in the Netherlands. Historically, this means we’ve had to rely on imported aggregates and precious natural resources to help secure supply.


“This process is costly and unsustainable, and so in association with Delft University, we’ve pioneered a 100% recycled pavement product. This recycled system means we’ve reduced demand for resources, reduced transport for raw materials and because of its combination of premium quality asphalt layers; we’ve also reduced the need for maintenance. At Schiphol for example, we’ve extended the life of the surface layer from 6-8 years to 10-15 years.”


Vertically Curved Runways


As well as improving the quality and longevity of airport runways, we are looking into changing their angle. If that sounds a little alarming, consider the basic design of an aircraft as a machine that’s created to fly rather than drive. If we accept this premise, then it seems natural to reduce the amount of time an aircraft spends on the runway.


Aeroplanes produce about 25% of their total CO2 emissions (and noise) during take-off. A vertically curved runway would speed ascent and make significant reductions in emissions and noise pollution. Mooren again: “This is an idea developed by Delft University’s Faculty of Aerospace Engineering. Although we’re still very much in concept stage, their idea of a vertically curved runway is a distinct possibility. If you allow gravity to assist in aircraft acceleration, you can make large impacts in reducing aircraft emissions in the crucial first three minutes of flight. We’re now looking at the potential impact on airport infrastructure together with Delft University and assessing how this idea could be integrated into existing airports.”


The concept provides clear wins for both airports and airlines. A relatively small incline of 5-10 metres would still make a marked impact in terms of fuel use, noise and emissions reductions and according to Mooren, would not compromise safety or require any adjustment to existing design standards.


Electronic Taxiing


A project closer to implementation is the eTaxi. The eTaxi is a system of ‘green’ taxiing - moving aircraft using electrically powered engines mounted onto the aircraft wheels. Currently aircraft ‘drive’ using their own engines which adds to fuel use, noise and emissions. In association with the National Aerospace Laboratory, NACO is studying the potential impact of eTaxi systems for airports and airport infrastructure, but expects to see green taxiing increase in use over the coming years.


The Elephant on the Runway


For Mooren’s particular specialism however, one of the most pressing challenges is ever-increasing aircraft loads. He says: “There’s no doubt that aircraft loads are increasing and although manufacturers are optimising their designs and reducing the number of wheels, this can mean more load per wheel. A great analogy would be to think of an aircraft as an elephant; as aircrafts increase in size, so does that elephant, but as it grows, it puts on a pair of high-heeled shoes – now imagine the damage it can do to a runway.”


With that vision in mind, it’s not surprising to hear Mooren talk about new developments in the pavement sector that support these enormously increased loads. His team are now working on new materials and combinations of materials to modify surfaces and provide a more sustainable future for airports – something that only specialist consultancies like NACO are able to offer.


Mooren is keen to stress that many of these developments and projects could not take place without the support of Amsterdam Airport Schiphol: “We’ve been lucky to have such an open minded partner at Schiphol. Together we’ve been able to make significant improvements in airport design that benefit not only Amsterdam’s hub, but further afield in other airports around the globe.”


And indeed, as NACO celebrates its 65th birthday this year, it continues to achieve success around the world with a recent competition win to design Mexico’s new Greenfield Airport - proving the reach and value of their expertise.


For more information on NACO and their project work, please contact fer.mooren@naco.rhdhv.com

 

Paul Wessels explores

the intricacies of airport

planning on a global scale

Reclaimed land for

airport city

Big benefits for

small island airports