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Heathrow Airport: Impact of Covid-19 on noise


Noise Consultants Limited has released a video documenting the impact of the Covid-19 on noise at Heathrow Airport.

Noise Consultants Limited (NCL) has released a video presenting a series of animations documenting the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on overflights and noise from Heathrow Airport over the period March to June 2020. The analysis was generated directly from radar data using NCL’s in-house software tools and the AEDT aircraft noise modelling package.

Managing Director, James Trow said:

“Heathrow kindly agreed to provide us with radar data to enable this analysis. The video clearly shows the impact of the pandemic on overflight rates and the corresponding reduction in noise output by around 80% at the peak of the pandemic.”

As well as showing the reduction in noise output during April and May, the analysis demonstrates changes in the pattern of the noise around the airport as a result of the airport moving to Single Runway Operations (SRO) which commenced on 6 April 2020 in response to the downturn in aircraft movements. It therefore highlights that as well as reduced noise, the way it is received by those who live around the Airport has also changed as a result of the pandemic.

James added:

“Airport noise in the UK has been a significantly reduced for several months as a result of the pandemic. This presents challenges to the aviation industry as activity begins to pick up as those most affected by aircraft noise during normal airport operations may have become accustom to this, and depending upon the rate of recover so. It is vital that the industry responds to these challenges and ensures that noise management and community engagement is part of their recovery plans”.


© Noise Consultants 2022