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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Guidebook for Developing Ramp Control Facilities. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24668.
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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Guidebook for Developing Ramp Control Facilities. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24668.
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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Guidebook for Developing Ramp Control Facilities. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24668.
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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Guidebook for Developing Ramp Control Facilities. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24668.
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Page 5
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Suggested Citation:"Front Matter." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2017. Guidebook for Developing Ramp Control Facilities. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24668.
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2 Guidebook for Developing ramp Control Facilities and efficiency constraints routinely experienced in the National Airspace System (NAS), which has the potential to give those managing ramps the “big picture.” This guidance is in no way meant to imply either that ramp control is needed at every airport or that it will cover all that must be considered before setting the airport on the course to imple- menting ramp control. However, for those airports that wish to consider ramp control, either now or in the future, this guidance is designed to assist airport operators through the decision- making process (this guidebook) and an accompanying ramp control decision-making sup- port tool (Decision Support Tool) (available for download from the report summary page at http://www.trb.org/Main/Blurbs/175172.aspx). Both of these can help airport operators first determine their ramp-related operational challenges and then help them decide whether these challenges or constraints could be effectively mitigated through ramp control. In cases where ramp control is determined to be a viable airport option, this guidance provides further assis- tance in helping airports determine which entity should be responsible for ramp control and what type of technology (e.g., on-site, virtual tower) would be most appropriate. 1.2 What Is Ramp Control? During initial interviews with personnel from passenger airlines, cargo operators, and airport operators, the research team found the primary reason that no single common definition of ramp control exists is because each airport is unique; each has its own staffing plan, and tailors ramp con- trol activities to fit its specific needs. Because of this, interview definitions given for ramp control ranged from controlling the movement of aircraft in the non-movement area to controlling the ground personnel responsible for physically pushing an aircraft off the gate. Therefore, the definition below is a culmination of ramp control activities at airports that were interviewed. For the purpose of this guidebook, ramp control can be defined as the activities undertaken by a non-FAA entity at an airport that: • Provides guidance and direction to all aircraft moving within the control entity’s area of jurisdiction: – For departing aircraft, typical instructions include providing pushback and disconnect point, and coordination with air traffic control (ATC). – For arriving aircraft, instructions include providing gate and ramp entrance information, if appropriate. • Sequences departing aircraft to the designated transition point (spot) on the ground and issuing traffic advisories, as necessary. • Coordinates arriving and departing aircraft hand-offs with ATC, including situations when aircraft enter the ramp but are unable to clear active taxiways. • Resolves conflicts with aircraft that are arriving, departing, or under tow within their area of jurisdiction. However: – Ramp control personnel do not resolve conflicts with vehicles or personnel moving on the ramp. Ramp controllers normally issue advisories to aircraft taxiing in the ramp (apron) area. – Ramp personnel (those performing pushback or marshalling aircraft) are responsible for ensuring aircraft do not come in contact with other aircraft, equipment, or buildings. 1.3 Who Is the Guidance For? This guidance has been primarily designed for use by airport operators who do not currently manage ramp control operations but are experiencing or anticipate experiencing one or more of the following issues that could impact ramp operations:

Introduction 3 • As a possible way to mitigate a safety issue either currently being experienced or that may be created with growth. • Growth in airport demand, including new flight operators. • Construction that may affect operations at the airport for the long term (e.g., building new terminals, adding additional gates) as well as short-term projects that result in the temporary closure of runways or taxiways. • Administrative decisions that affect operations at the airport (e.g., changes to or expansion of common-use gates). • Potential changes in airfield operations due to the implementation of evolving FAA Next Generation technologies [e.g., surface management, terminal flight data manager (TFDM)]. Additionally, this guidance may be used by airports that currently have ramp control and want to validate or consider modifying current management options. 1.4 How to Use the Guidebook To best use this guidebook, it is recommended that airport management identify a point per- son who will be responsible for carrying out all of the necessary tasks outlined in this document, coordinating between all interested stakeholders, and developing an environment conducive to communication and collaboration. See Figure 1 for a description of this guidebook and the accompanying Decision Support Tool. The icons in the figure are used throughout to alert the user as to the appropriate guidance. The decision process described in this guidebook utilizes a series of questions meant to foster critical thinking about the ramp-related problems an airport is interested in solving while also encouraging stakeholder involvement. The questions are designed to probe shared goals and objectives as well as ramp solutions. An airport operator (also referred to as a “user” in this document) can continue to delve further into the details of the considerations itemized in the guidebook in order to reach a final decision on whether or not to start up ramp control at an airport. For this purpose, the user may use the questions that are contained in Appendix A. Both the decision process described in this guidebook and the Decision Support Tool can be used for planning, as well as serve as a resource for airport operators to use when new or unforeseen ramp-related conditions occur. Guidebook—describes the ramp control decision process that guides the airport operator and stakeholders through a number of consideration topics and questions in order to determine whether the airport has ramp-related operational constraints that could be resolved or mitigated by implementation of ramp control. Decision Support Tool—an easy-to-use, graphical user interface (GUI) aid that guides the user through the four-step decision process and allows him/her to create a record of his/her responses. The responses can be generated into HTML-formatted reports and printed and shared with stakeholders. Figure 1. Two-part guidance.

4 Guidebook for Developing ramp Control Facilities This guidebook is organized as follows: • Chapter 1, Introduction: This chapter provides background about the research project and explains the purpose and organization of the guidebook. • Chapter 2, Decision Process and Decision Support Tool: This chapter describes the four- step process in detail, including the important aspect of information sharing. Steps 1, 2, and 3 have associated questions found in Appendix A, as well as in the Decision Support Tool, that will help the user determine if there is a ramp-related operational challenge that ramp control could resolve or mitigate and how significant the problem is. In Step 4, users can then evalu- ate the various areas of concern to help determine the best candidates for performing ramp control and which locations are most ideal for managing ramp control. • Chapter 3, Initial and Recurring Costs: This chapter describes how potential costs and benefits associated with various ramp management options and locations may be evaluated and compared against one another in order to help weigh various ramp control options under consideration. • Chapter 4, Implementation: This chapter describes many of the steps that should be consid- ered once the decision to implement ramp control has been made. • Chapter 5, Summary: This chapter provides a brief summary of research results, which may lead to further study on ramp control. In addition to a list of references, a glossary of terms, and acronyms, this guidebook includes several appendices: • Appendix A, Questions Associated with Steps 1–3: This appendix contains the questions associated with Steps 1, 2, and 3. The questions in this appendix may be copied for indi- viduals to document their responses; however, the same questions are provided in the Deci- sion Support Tool. Using the Decision Support Tool will make documentation easier as it has a reporting feature. In the tool, some responses to questions will prompt the user to answer additional follow-on questions. Additionally, some of the questions in the tool allow for free- text responses. • Appendix B, Initial and Recurring Costs: This appendix includes the initial and recurring costs associated with implementing ramp control from the airport operator’s perspective. • Appendix C, Advantages and Disadvantages: This appendix lists the advantages and dis- advantages of each of the consideration topics. The responses are written from the airport operator’s perspective. • Appendix D, Lessons Learned: This appendix describes lessons learned from the perspectives of the various stakeholders that perform ramp control. This information was obtained during the data gathering phases and during this research project’s validation workshops. • Appendix E, Airports with Ramp Control: This appendix lists the airports that currently man- age ramp control operations, whether through airport, airline, third party, or a combination of these efforts. Airports are listed by region and by type of stakeholder that performs ramp control. • Appendix F, Technology Considerations: This appendix describes a few examples of tech- nology that is being developed or utilized that should be considered by an airport operator. • Appendix G, Staffing Considerations: This appendix describes the various factors to consider when determining staffing options for a ramp control facility. 1.5 Collaboration Is a Key to Success During the development of this guidebook and during the validation reviews, one clear mes- sage emerged: for the decision-making process to be successful, collaboration is paramount. Therefore, all of the stakeholders who may be affected by the decision to pursue ramp control

Introduction 5 need to be included in the decision-making process. Generally, stakeholders include the FAA, major air carriers, fixed-base operators (FBOs), de-icing operators, or other stakeholders based on the local airport situation. Including these parties, whether through face-to-face meetings or “community partnership” efforts, can help the airport be proactive rather than reactive in addressing airport challenges. Furthermore, the airport operator is typically in the best position to bring the stakeholders together and champion this collaborative effort.

6C h a p t e r 2 Figure 2 illustrates the four-step decision process, which is a problem solving method designed to take the user through the process of defining ramp-related problem(s), determining the scope of the problem(s), evaluating the items that should be considered, and determining the best implementation alternative. The Four-Step Decision Process Step 1: Define Ramp-Related Problem: The airport operator and interested stakeholders must determine whether there are ramp-related operational concerns in one or more con- sideration topics. It is important to discern whether alternatives to resolve/mitigate the chal- lenges or constraints require implementation of formal ramp control or whether they can be accomplished through a change in operational procedures. Consideration topics are reviewed in Section 2.1.1. Users can also balance these concerns with executive-level considerations as described in 2.1.4. Questions that guide the user through this critical step can be found in Appendix A. At the end of this step, if an airport operator, with the input from stakeholders, determines that ramp control is not required to resolve or mitigate ramp-related operational challenges or constraints, then they are finished with this process and can focus on other solutions includ- ing development and/or changes to existing procedures. If it is determined that ramp control is required as part of a ramp-related solution, then the reader is directed to complete Steps 2, 3, and 4. Step 2: Scope the Problem: An airport operator and interested stakeholders must deter- mine the degree (scope) to which operational efficiency, safety, construction, or administra- tive challenges impact local stakeholders. More details on scoping the problem can be found in Section 2.2. Questions associated with this step can be found in Appendix A, Table A-2. Step 3: Evaluate Ramp Control Considerations: The airport operator must now determine which entity (airline, third party, airport operator, or a hybrid solution) is best suited to perform ramp control at the airport by considering each of four major areas of concern—people, tech- nology, facility and supporting infrastructure options, and administrative/budget. A discussion on these topics can be found in Section 2.3. Questions associated with this step can be found in Appendix A, Table A-3. Step 4: Determine the Best Alternative: In this step, the guidebook user focuses on decid- ing who will manage the ramp and from what type of location. More details on this step can be found in Section 2.1.5. Decision Process and Decision Support Tool

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TRB's Airport Cooperative Research Program (ACRP) Research Report 167: Guidebook for Developing Ramp Control Facilities provides guidance to airport operators considering providing ramp control services. An accompanying

Ramp Control Decision Support Tool

assists users through most considerations before providing ramp control services, including facility requirements, staffing, training, and technology and other factors, allowing the user to determine the best way to move forward.

The Ramp Control Decision Support Tool is implemented in a sequence of HTML files and Javascript libraries that can be navigated using a web browser. The current version of the tool supports Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox browsers.

In order to use the install and start the tool please use the following steps:

1. Copy the provided zip file with the tool to a local directory.

2. Unzip the contents of the zip file to this directory.

3. Open index.html file using either Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox.

4. The welcome page provides a general overview of the tool.

5. Click on the Get Started button to start uisng the tool. This will lead to Step 1 questions.

6. Provide responses to questions included in Step 1 and when done click on the Next button.

7. Repeat for Steps 2 and 3.

8. When done answering the questions for all three steps click on Report to automatically generate a report with all provided answers.

9. The report can be printed by clicking on Print button.

Disclaimer: This software is offered as is, without warranty or promise of support of any kind either expressed or implied. Under no circumstance will the National Academy of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine or the Transportation Research Board (collectively "TRB") be liable for any loss or damage caused by the installation or operation of this product. TRB makes no representation or warranty of any kind, expressed or implied, in fact or in law, including without limitation, the warranty of merchantability or the warranty of fitness for a particular purpose, and shall not in any case be liable for any consequential or special damages.

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