When you talk about the airside components of an airport you are talking about the movement of aircraft around the airport as well as to and from the air. It also includes all the facilities located on the physical property to facilitate aircraft operations. George Busch Intercontinental Airport (IAH) handles seventeen passenger airlines between five passenger terminals, along with thirteen all cargo airlines. For the sixth busiest airport in the world, you are talking a lot of facilities. So how does the airport that lays on over 10,000 acres of land keep everything running efficient?
Well for starters, to accommodate the passenger traffic to and from the terminals they have an underground Inter-terminal passenger train that connects to all the terminal and ...view middle of the document...
When the winds are out of the north IAH will go to a Northwest Flow, departing runways 33L and 33R; arriving 26L, 26R and 27. All the runways are precision approach runways capable of either Category I/III approaches ranging from 9,000ft to 12,000ft. IAH has an intricate system of parallel, entrance, bypass, and rapid-exit taxiways accommodating the more than 500,000 operations. The tables below describe the lighting system used at IAH.
Another component that partners with the airport at IAH are the aircraft rescue and firefighting facilities (ARFF). “An emergency can be either a Distress or an Urgency condition as defined in the Pilot/Controller Glossary.” (JO 7110.65U) Strategically placed around the airport are 3 fire departments, Station 54, Station 92, and Station 99. Per a letter of agreement after an emergency has been declared and the proper Alert identified Station 54 will be notified and given all pertinent information subsequently passing it on to Stations 92 and 94. All emergency airport vehicles will proceed to their staging areas to await further instruction from the tower.
As you can see it takes an enormous amount of dedication and hard work to make the Airside components of an airport operate efficiently. From the airport designers, ramp controllers, equipment technicians, the controllers and many others everyone plays a part in providing safe and efficient operations of aircraft while at George Bush Intercontinental Airport.
FAA, Federal Aviation Administration (2012) Air Traffic Control Procedures and Phraseology, JO7110.65U, U.S Government Printing Office, Washington, D.C.
FAA, Federal Aviation Administration (2009) Intercontinental Air Traffic Control Tower Study Guide