Military Aviation Noise Contour for the Royal Air Force

The UK’s Ministry of Defence’s (MOD) Royal Air Force (RAF) contracted HMMH to assist with developing a Military Aviation Noise Contour (MANC) for RAF Mildenhall and combining it with the extant MANC for RAF Lakenheath.

For RAF Mildenhall component, HMMH assisted the RAF with data collection, processing, and analysis.  HMMH designed and  led a novel approach by using US Department of Defense (DOD) BaseOps software for initial data collection and verification and writing a Python-based script to convert most BaseOps outputs to inputs for the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) Aviation Environmental Design Tool (AEDT). Noise modeling was accomplished with AEDT for flight and runup operations of based fixed-wing aircraft (KC-135R and MC-130J), and the US DOD NOISEMAP suite, i.e., the Advanced Acoustic Model (AAM) and the core NMAP program, for based CV-22 aircraft flight and run-up operations, respectively.

The AEDT modeling required HMMH to develop Noise-Power-Distance (NPD) curves for KC-135R (runups) and MC-130J (flight and runup) operations. HMMH used output of the US DOD NOISEMAP (core NMAP program) software directly for these NPDs. HMMH also converted the RAF’s Integrated Noise Model (INM)-based NPDs for the F-35A to AEDT format.

In a collaborative training-style environment with RAF personnel, HMMH generated contours of 16-hour A-weighted Equivalent Sound Level (LAeq(16)) for 63, 66 and 72 dB for RAF Mildenhall. Using the US DOD NMPlot software, HMMH combined the noise grids of RAF Mildenhall with MOD’s INM-based noise grid for RAF Lakenheath and exported the resultant contours in SHP format for NVD to generate the combined MANC report.