Airport Foreign Object Debris (FOD) Detection Equipment


FAA Releases Advisory Circular on Standards for Automatic FOD Detection Equipment
Xsight Systems FODetect is fully compliant with FAA’s new AC specifications and eligible for Airport Improvement Program (AIP) and Passenger Facility Charge (PFC) program funding.
   
-> Download AC Number 150/5220-24, Sept. 30, 2009      
-> Link to FAA AC webpage
-> Read article highlights

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), the U.S. Department of Transportation agency with authority to regulate and oversee all aspects of civil aviation in the U.S., has issued an Advisory Circular (AC) on automatic runway foreign object debris (FOD) detection and alerting systems. Xsight Systems FODetect meets or exceeds the highest level of performance for every required parameter in the AC and is eligible for federal funding through AIP and PFC programs. An AIP grant covers 75% to 95% of overall costs with PFC monies covering additional sums.  

Due to the call for updated modern safety program requirements on airport runways, the FAA established detailed guidelines following several years of evaluating the leading FOD detection technologies.  While the AC allows for varying levels of performance, Xsight's FODetect exceeds the highest level of performance in a variety of areas.  These include the detection of objects under one inch in diameter, accurate location of FOD, detection of closely located multiple FOD items, and the fastest detection response time of any system available. 

FODetect’s ability to detect FOD in less time than the time between aircraft movements, without compromising detection capability, outperforms all other systems, and meets the demands of even the nation's busiest airports.  FODetect also allows close-range visual validation of objects to avoid false FOD alarms. This high level of overall performance can dramatically improve safety and increase airport efficiency.

There are several aspects of technology and design unique to Xsight's FODetect system that enable it to surpass the FAA's strict requirements. FODetect is the only system meeting the specifications of a dual-sensor/hybrid system in which both radar and electro-optic sensors are used for FOD detection.

The system is also the only one that can be co-located with runway edge lights, providing the optimal vantage point for detection of even the smallest FOD, with no blind spots or occlusions.

As the closest system to the runway, it is subject to the least possible atmospheric interference, ensuring optimal detection even in inclement weather conditions. Utilizing the existing runway edge lights' infrastructure also enables the most cost effective installation.

In addition to protecting airports from the risks of FOD, Xsight's FODetect can also provide airports with FOD source ascription, the unique ability to identify the source of the FOD, allowing controllers to notify aircraft of any lost mechanical parts or to otherwise identify the party responsible for causing the debris.

The Xsight system also provides air and ground controllers with continuous awareness of runway condition, allowing them to view the actual runway through the system cameras during routine operation as well as during maintenance and harsh weather.

FOD detection equipment meeting the AC requirements is eligible for Airport Improvement Program (AIP) and Passenger Facility Charge (PFC) program funding. The use of the AC is compulsory for equipment acquired through the above programs.

The FAA's extensive evaluation of Xsight's FODetect, which commenced in January 2008 at Boston's Logan International Airport and continued over two winters, including heavy snow conditions, consistently achieved outstanding performance results throughout the FAA's assessment.

 

Article highlights


-> Xsight's FODetect® meets or exceeds the highest level of performance in every
     parameter required in the FAA's Advisory Circular on FOD detection.

 

-> FODetect is  eligible for Airport Improvement Program (AIP) and Passenger Facility Charge

    (PFC) program funding.

 

->Areas of top performance include detection of objects under one inch, detection of close

     multiple FODs, and the fastest detection response time.-> Aspects unique to Xsight enable

     it to surpass the FAA's strict requirements include: the only dual-sensor/hybrid technology

     and the only system co-located with runway edge lights.

 

-> In addition to protecting airports, Xsight's FODetect offers FOD source ascription, a unique

     ability to identify the source of the FOD, allowing controllers to notify aircraft of lost parts

     or to identify parties responsible for causing the debris.

 

-> The FAA's extensive evaluation of Xsight's FODetect commenced in January 2008 at

     Boston's Logan International Airport, and continued over two winters, including heavy

     snow conditions.