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Incorporating UAS into Airport InfrastructureâPlanning Guidebook Â 84 7 Appendix: PDT Airport Master Plan Appendix PDT is a commercial service, non-primary airport that also facilitates UAS landings and takeoffs for the Oregon Army National Guard (OANG) and the Pendleton UAS Range (PUR). The addition of UAS activity associated with the PUR was one of the factors that the Master Plan update addressed. The PDT Master Plan update was funded with an AIP grant and local funds (Century West Engineering, 2018). UAS operations were considered in many components of the PDT Master Plan including: â¢ Activity Forecast; â¢ Existing Conditions; â¢ UAS Infrastructure/Airspace Needs; â¢ Alternatives Analysis; â¢ Airport Layout Plan; â¢ Airport Capital Improvement Program; and â¢ Capital Funding Sources and Programs and Cash Flow Analysis. The following sub-paragraphs describe how UAS planning was included in each of these components. PDT Master Plan Activity Forecast Two UAS forecasts, Baseline and Growth, were prepared for the Master Plan Update due to the uncertainty in future civilian UAS activity. Both the baseline and growth UAS forecasts included moderate growth (5 percent annually) for military UAS operations since military UAS operations were already well established at PDT and would not be impacted by future FAA civilian UAS regulations. It is important to note that PDT is part of the Pendleton UAS Range (PUR). This UAS Range is âpart of the Pan-Pacific UAS Test Range Complex, one of six FAA designated Test Sitesâ¦.(whose purpose) is to provide the FAA with testing data to assist them in the development of regulations for integration of Manned and Unmanned Aircraft into the NASâ (Century West Engineering, 2018). Civilian (i.e. all UAS activity not operated by the DOD) UAS activity is especially difficult to forecast. The Master Plan noted that a few customers alone could potentially generate hundreds of annual operations. Also, future FAA UAS regulations could positively or negatively impact UAS civilian operations. Regardless, a baseline was needed to develop a UAS forecast. Thus, a baseline of 500 civilian UAS operations per year, mostly revolving around operator training, research, and flight testing was assumed. The Baseline UAS forecast included 500 civilian UAS operations annually throughout the 20-year planning period. The Growth UAS forecast included 500 civilian UAS operations annually for the first five years after which operations were forecast to increase 10 percent annually for the remaining 15 years. The 10 percent growth rate accounted for the potential civilian UAS market growth and the activity expected due to the PUR (Century West Engineering, 2018). Table 11 shows the two UAS forecasts prepared for the Master Plan. Table 11 : UAS operations forecast for Eastern Oregon Regional Airport ACTIVITY 2014 2020 2025 2030 2035
Incorporating UAS into Airport InfrastructureâPlanning Guidebook Â 85 BASELINE PROJECTIONS Civilian 500 500 500 500 500 Military 280 380 480 610 780 Total 780 880 980 1,110 1,280 GROWTH PROJECTIONS Civilian 500 500 800 1,300 2,100 Military 280 380 480 610 780 Total 780 880 1,280 1,910 2,880 PDT Existing Conditions Existing UAS infrastructure was identified as part of the inventory of existing conditions. Existing UAS infrastructure at PDT includes 15 - 50 foot by 50 foot UAS compacted gravel operation pads. These pads featured potable water, electric and fiber internet access. The OANG used one of these pads for operations. The Master Plan also noted that the âThe OANG uses a catapult launcher located southeast of the Taxiway Golf and Foxtrot intersection, and typically recovers the UAS on Taxiway Foxtrot. The use of Taxiway F for UAS recovery requires the taxiway to be temporarily closed by a Notice to Airmenâ (Century West Engineering, 2018). The documentation of existing conditions also noted the advantage of being the PURâs designated a test site. PDT UAS Infrastructure / Airspace Needs A separate chapter of the PDT Master Plan was developed to address UAS planning, infrastructure needs, airspace requirements, and to provide a phased plan for UAS integration. The Master Plan noted that the need for UAS infrastructure, equipment, and support service varies and is dependent upon the size and type of UAS. Therefore, a description of infrastructure needs for various categories of UAS based on the informal DOD UAS Groups was included. Table 12 summarizes infrastructure requirements for each UAS Group. Table 12 : PDT airport infrastructure requirements Runway Requirements General Services Facilities Administrative/ Office Space Group 1 None. Mobile Operations Center (MOC), radio communications equipment, crew shelter, data- processing space. None. Data processing, training, secure storage.
Incorporating UAS into Airport InfrastructureâPlanning Guidebook Â 86 Runway Requirements General Services Facilities Administrative/ Office Space Group 2 & 3 Wide range of requirements for Unmanned Aircraft platforms and associated launch, recovery and control mechanisms ranging from pneumatic launchers, skyhook recovery, to runway and net system recovery. Fuel, UAS pad maintenance, utility support (e.g. internet, power, trash, and sewer), transportation, security and labor associated with safety, compliance, and administration support. Memorandums of Agreement (MOA) will be required with the Air Traffic Control Tower (ATCT) for airfield movement and airspace coordination / approval. Many Group 2 systems utilize an MOC to support operations in the field. The UAS pads located on the airport can accommodate a wide range of trailers to meet the needs of current and future UAS customers. Data processing, training, secure storage. Group 4 & 5 As a general rule, Group 4 & 5 UAS operate very similarly to manned aircraft aviation and require very similar infrastructure and equipment support. Large UAS will require airfield services such as towing, refueling / de-fueling, deicing, power, security, and hangar space. MOAâs will be required with the ATCT for airfield movement and airspace coordination / approval. Depending on the owner / operator, Group 4 & 5 UAS platforms utilize command and control stations that may be building- based or housed within mobile ground stations. The DOD developed mobile ground stations to support overseas locations and separated the Mission Control Element (MCE) and Launch and Recovery Element (LRE) functions. These stations are typically housed in commercially available trailers outfitted with Ultra- High Frequency The administrative footprints for large platforms are significant with personnel office space ranging from 10-20 offices with a conference room, break-room, and bathrooms. Space located above a large hangar or a small-detached building would meet the needs of required administrative personnel.
Incorporating UAS into Airport InfrastructureâPlanning Guidebook Â 87 Runway Requirements General Services Facilities Administrative/ Office Space (UHF) and Very High Frequency (VHF) radio links, a C-band line of sight data link, and KU- band (12-18 GHz) communication satellite data links. Other users, such as National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), utilize a building-based operations center where ground, support, and communications equipment are permanently installed. The PDT Master Plan described then current and future UAS airspace requirements. Current requirements were based on the existing OANG Shadow (RQ-7) UAS operations. In discussing current airspace requirements, the Master Plan stressed the importance of the Air Traffic Control Tower (ATCT). The ATCT had a visual display provided by the DOA that controllers used to track the Shadow while in flight. Under current airspace conditions, manned and unmanned operations were being segregated to avoid traffic conflicts and mitigate risk. The Master Plan noted that mixing of manned and unmanned traffic within Class D airspace during launch and recovery UAS operations were prohibited except for a chase aircraft. Lost link procedures were also described. The PDT Master Plan stated that the current procedures could accommodate UAS testing and the Oregon ANG training operations for the next five to 10 years unless significant changes occurred to the ANG training operations (Century West Engineering, 2018). The PDT Master Plan then discussed the three phased plans for the PUR. The Phase I plan had already been implemented and the Phases II and III plans informed the future UAS infrastructure requirements outlined in the Master Plan. These plans were purposefully flexible as they were designed to accommodate both manned and unmanned aviation until the UAS market was more mature (Century West Engineering, 2018). As part of Phase I, a dedicated 2,800-foot UAS strip and a full service UAS operating area was provided. Also, the fifteen 50-foot by 50-foot compacted gravel pads previously noted were installed adjacent to the UAS strip. Phase II included construction of several multipurpose hangars and Phase III included long-term development of an industrial park with road access; various buildings and hangars for UAS use; and a new UAS launch and recovery runway (Century West Engineering, 2018). The Phase II and Phase III proposed developments were carried forward to the alternativesâ analysis.
Incorporating UAS into Airport InfrastructureâPlanning Guidebook Â 88 PDT Master Plan Alternative Analysis The analysis of airport development alternatives included consideration of UAS infrastructure requirements. As part of the introduction to the alternatives, the PDT Master Plan acknowledged that â[t]here are no FAA design standards specifically developed for UAS airside facility planning. For this planning process, existing FAA design standards for comparably-sized conventional aircraft (Airplane Design Group I and II) will be used to define operating areas (runways, taxiways, etc.)â (Century West Engineering, 2018). All the preliminary Airport Development Alternatives included a proposed UAS-only runway. âThe proposed UAS runway is intended to allow improved separation between conventional aircraft and UAS equipment. The proposed UAS-only runway (U7L-U25R) is located 700 feet north, and parallel to existing Runway 7-25, which meets the FAA standards for accommodating simultaneous operations during visual flight rules (VFR) conditionsâ (Century West Engineering, 2018). The North UAS Development Alternative included UAS airside and landside development. The airside development consisted of an 1,800-foot long (optional 2,800-foot) by 60-foot wide UAS-only runway and a parallel taxiway. Support facilities included a UAS apron, UAS launch pads, UAS Tower, hangars, commercial buildings, internal access roads, parking and an extended vehicle access road (Century West Engineering, 2018). PDT Master Plan Airport Layout Plan (ALP) The PDT ALP also incorporated planned UAS facilities. The North UAS Development Alternative including the proposed UAS-only runway was shown on the future ALP, Airport Land Use Plan, Airport Airspace Plan (Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 77), and the Airport Data Sheet. Also, proposed UAS facilities were included on one of the On-Airport Individual Area Plans Drawing, the UAS Development Area Plan. The ALP set also included a Runway Protection Zone/Inner Approach Plan and Profile sheet for the proposed UAS Runway U7L-U25R. PDT Master Plan Airport Capital Improvement Program Proposed UAS facilities were also included in the 20-year Airport Capital Improvement Program (ACIP). The intermediate term projects included: â¢ âUAS Runway (2,800' x 60') [National Environmental Policy Act Documentation]; â¢ North Access Road (to UAS Development); â¢ UAS Runway (2,800' x 60'); â¢ UAS Parallel Taxiway; â¢ UAS Apronâ (Century West Engineering, 2018) Cost estimates for these facilities were included in the ACIP and the Master Plan indicated that these projects would be eligible for AIP funding. PDT Master Plan Capital Funding Sources and Programs Finally, the PDT Master Plan identified capital funding sources and programs and provided a cash flow analysis. In addition to AIP funding, two potential state funding sources / programs were noted, namely, Connect Oregon and the Aviation System Action Program (ASAP) Fund. âConnect
Incorporating UAS into Airport InfrastructureâPlanning Guidebook Â 89 Oregon is an initiative to invest in air, rail, marine, and bicycle/pedestrian infrastructure to ensure Oregonâs transportation system is strong, diverse, and efficient.â (Oregon Department of Transportation, n.d.). âConnect Oregon projects are eligible for grants that cover up to 70 percent of project costsâ (Oregon Department of Transportation, n.d.). The Oregon State Legislature established the ASAP Fund in 2015 which is distributed through three programs: Critical Oregon Airport Relief Program, Rural Oregon Aviation Relief Program and State Owned Airports Reserve Program (Oregon Department of Aviation, n.d.). The PDT Master Plan noted that the City of Pendleton applied for a Connect Oregon grant in 2016 for the Pendleton UAS Range (PUR) but was not successful. The PDT Master Plan did not indicate whether these programs would be applicable to UAS development. Like State airport infrastructure investments, these happen on a case by case basis and differ per state based on funding availability. Beyond the Master Plan Several interesting UAS developments including new airport users and additional funding have occurred at PDT since the initial publication of the Draft Master Plan in December 2016. Airport users now include Airbus AÂ³ that is testing the Vahana, PAE ISR that is testing new vertical and landing reconnaissance UAs and Cubic Corporation that is flying the Ares surveillance drone (Banse, 2018). The airport has been successful in obtaining state economic incentive program grants. For example, in late 2018, the Airport received a $301,122 state grant for a new mobile command center, and the mission control and innovation center that houses the PUR administrative offices and UAS training, operations and manufacturing. The grant also provides funding for new equipment to enhance 3-dimensional printing and metal fabrication. A U.S. Economic Development Administration grant is also being pursued to help fund construction of new hangars to meet drone company demand (Sierra, 2018)