This section presents some of the key projects led by Dr. Ayres.
While working with Applied Research Associates (ARA), Dr. Ayres was the project manager for this study. The objective was to develop an aircraft overrun and undershoot risk assessment approach, supported by scientific evidence and statistical theory, with step-by-step procedures and instructions for analysis of Runway Safety Areas (RSA) and Runway End Safety Areas (RESA). The project was completed in 2008. ACRP Report 3 can be downloaded from the ACRP website.
As Principal Investigator, Dr. Ayres led this ACRP project to develop a guidebook designed to assist 14 CFR Part 139 airport operators with the development and implementation of safety management systems (SMS) for their airports. It is a practical reference to provide objective guidance on how to develop SMS processes and create the system. The project was completed in 2009. ACRP Report 1, Vol 2 is available at the ACRP website.
Implementation of Safety Management Systems
Dr. Ayres managed the project to implement an SMS at Dallas/Fort Worth(DFW) International Airport and was a key consultant for the implementation of SMS at San Francisco International Airport (SFO), Dubuque Regional Airport (DBQ) and is currently helping Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG). Some of these projects were part of the Third FAA Pilot Study, and were successfully completed in 2011. These projects included the implementation of safety risk management and safety assurance processes, conducting of three safety risk assessments, and the implementation of a safety reporting system and SMS software.This ACRP study led to the development of a comprehensive risk analysis tool for RSAs that could address the evaluation of existing conditions and planned improvements. Dr. Ayres was the Principal Investigator for this project, and the basic approach was that presented in ACRP Report 3; however, it was extended to include the analysis of aircraft veer-offs, the use of declared distances, the implementation of Engineered Material Arresting System (EMAS) beds, and the incorporation of a risk approach for consideration of obstacles in or in the vicinity of the RSA. ACRP Report 50 is available at the ACRP website.
ACRP Report 51 – Risk Assessment Method to Support Modification of Airfield Separation Standards
The objective of this research effort was to develop a simple and practical methodology for assessing the risk of aircraft collisions associated with non-standard airfield separations. The tool developed is intended to support requests for Modification of Standards (MOS) for non-standard separations. The project was completed in 2009 and ACRP Report 51 is available at the ACRP website.
Probability Assessment of Runway Excursions and Undershoots at Toronto Lester B. Pearson International Airport
While working with ARA, Dr. Ayres led two studies to evaluate runway cleared areas (RCAs) at Toronto Pearson International Airport (TPIA) in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. An initial study was conducted in 2009 using the methodology described in ACRP Report 3. A second analysis expanded the original study and utilized the new models described in ACRP Report 50. The studies helped TPIA identify the best alternatives to improve existing RCAs.
Probability Assessment of Aircraft Overruns and Undershoots at San Francisco International Airport (SFO)
SFO wanted to evaluate alternative runway safety area scenarios using a risk-based approach. The study was led by Dr. Ayres, and the results of the analysis helped SFO identify the most effective solutions. The methodology used was that presented in ACRP Report 3, and an enhancement to the methodology was developed to evaluate the implementation of EMAS. The study was completed in 2009.
Development of Safety Management System (SMS) Programs
Dr. Ayres managed the development of SMS programs for Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW) International, Jacksonville International (JAX) and Lexington Blue Grass (LEX) airports. These projects were part of the First FAA Pilot Study and included a gap analysis, development of SMS Manual and an SMS implementation plan. These projects were successfully completed in 2008.
ACRP Report 107 – Development of a Runway Veer-off Location Distribution Risk Assessment Model and Reporting Template
The objectives of this research was to identify the subareas of the Runway Safety Area where runway veer-offs are most likely to occur and develop quantitative analysis capability to evaluate risk of lateral runway excursions. Dr. Ayres was the Principal Investigator and the project was successfully completed in 2013. ACRP Report 107 is available at the ACRP website.
This guidebook provides guidance on conducting the safety risk management (SRM) process, one of the four components of a Safety Management System (SMS). It is organized to allow readers who are new to SMS and its components to understand where the SRM process falls within an overall SMS. The guidebook provides information on conducting safety risk assessments (SRA) and tailors this information so that it can be scaled for smaller airports. Tools and templates are provided as appendices and typical accident and incident rates are presented to help airport operators understand some potential airport risks. In this project, Dr. Ayres was a key consultant to Futron Aviation.
This report complements ACRP Report 131: A Guidebook for Safety Risk Management for Airports (Neubauer et al. 2015) and consolidates information gathered from Part 139 airports to identify existing challenges and lessons learned from past experience conducting SRAs. This information could be shared to help Part 139 airports that are performing SRAs. Processes used by other industries and foreign airports were reviewed to provide additional insight on the SRA process, which may become routine when the FAA finalizes an SMS Rule for Part 139 airports. The study was completed in 2016.