Evaluating EMAS

This article considers factors that airport operators can use to determine if installing an engineered material arresting system (EMAS) would be advantageous in helping to meet Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) mandates for maintaining standard runway safety areas (RSAs). While EMAS, developed by Engineered Arresting Systems Corp (EASC), is currently the only system of its type supported by the FAA, each airport must evaluate it on an individual basis. EMAS is often a popular option for urban airports because it addresses their significantly limited access to available land. Time, money, and continuous attention are factors determining whether an airport chooses to adopt EMAS. One immediate cost factor is the expense of site preparation and construction, which requires the runway to be closed or shortened during the installation process. The article further notes that the constant attention factor is perhaps the most formidable challenge in selecting EMAS, as regular upkeep is needed for the surface of the EMAS arrestor bed itself to ensure the good condition of the seals, adhesives, and surface coatings. The continuous attention factor must be considered in even a more pronounced way for airports impacted by winter weather. In such cases, special equipment will need to be purchased for snow and ice removal since standard snow removal vehicles are likely to damage the arrestor bed if they travel on it. However, the advantage of EMAS is in its allowing airports to retain their runway length while still complying with FAA requirements. EMAS also mitigates environmental concerns, with their associated costs, that arise when an airport needs to extend a runway over a body of water or other area having ecological significance. The article includes a step-by-step depiction of the EMAS installation process, detailing everything from construction planning to the establishment of a regular maintenance schedule.

  • Availability:
  • Authors:
    • Dargie, David
    • Langlais, Steven
  • Publication Date: 2007-12


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Print
  • Features: Photos;
  • Pagination: pp 61-63
  • Serial:
    • Airport Magazine
    • Volume: 19
    • Issue Number: 7
    • Publisher: AAAE Service Corporation, Incorporated
    • ISSN: 0744-5326

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01099575
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: May 4 2008 9:52PM