Research Projects

Demonstration of Airside Automated Mowing

This project would deploy and evaluate airside automated mowing.

Background (Describe the current situation or problem in the industry, and how your idea would address it.)

Airside mowing is labor intensive, critical to support wildlife management, and potentially disruptive to airfield operations. The proposed project would deploy and investigate the potential for automated mowing on the airside. Currently, airports in Europe (e.g., Norway) utilize automated mowing due to the reduced personnel requirements and the potential for increased sustainability since energy usage is lower (no person is riding a mower so mowers are smaller) and charging stations can be powered with solar energy. Another potential benefit of automated mowing is automated mowers may reduce wildlife on airport property.

Objective (What is the desired product or result that will help the airport industry?)

Deploy and evaluate automated mowing to better understand the potential benefits and limitations in the airfield environment.

Approach (Describe in general terms the steps you think are needed to achieve the objective.)

Partner with a Part 139 GA airport and experienced automated mowing company to deploy automated mowing on a trial basis to investigate and document the opportunities and challenges.

Cost Estimate and Backup (Provide a cost estimate and support for how you arrived at the estimate.)

Equipment $125,000 (multiple mowing units in different parts of the airfield)
Evaluation $125,000

Related Research - List related ACRP and other industry research; describe gaps (see link to Research Roadmaps above), and describe how your idea would address these gaps. This is a critical element of a synthesis topic submission.

This project would build on the ACRP project 03-48, AGVT for Airside Applications.

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Idea No. 178