Runway Centerline Deviation Study

The objective of this project is to analyze the deviations from centerline of departing and arriving aircraft from active runways. The purpose of the project is toestimate the positions of aircraft relative to runway centerline along the course of aircraft departure and arrival profiles, so as to determine the amount of safety area may be required for specifications such as total pavement width, taxi lane separation, and safety area width to ensure against wingtip conflicts and base landing gear deviations from pavement, for relatively large aircraft on relatively small taxiways and runways.The estimation of deviations from runway and taxiway centerlines of moving aircraft was studied with some significance for the entry of new large aircraft, such as the Airbus A-380 and Boeing 787-800 into the commercial airport environment. Such aircraft, often categorized as Group VI aircraft (aircraft with wingspans greater than 217’ wingspans), were studied for the possibility of their use on runways and taxiways originally designed for smaller (group V) aircraft. However, as general aviation aircraft evolve, from the proliferation of larger piston aircraft to the introduction of personal jet aircraft (such as the Embraer Phenom 100 and Cirrus Jet), there may be a desire to allow these aircraft to utilize runways and taxiways of narrower width, which exist at many smaller general aviation airports. In addition, for an existing fleet using the latest avionics technologies, the accuracy of landings, particularly in inclement weather, may be improving with respect to proximity to centerline on landing. If such is the case, there may be some justification to consider reductions in required spacing between taxi lanes or distances from runway center line to pavement edges. In other instances, however, there may be situations where aircraft unintentionally deviate from centerline due to adverse wind conditions, for example, or situations where aircraft intentionally deviate from centerline on arrival, for example, to make quick turns to an exit taxiway. In any case, a more complete understanding of how and when aircraft deviate from centerlines is of great interest. This study will consist of a comprehensive empirical analysis of departures and arrivals of a variety of aircraft utilizing a number of general aviation airports, in particular, those that are owned, operated, or otherwise affiliated with Partnership to Enhance General Aviation Safety, Accessibility and Sustainability (PEGASAS) universities. From data collected, a statistical analysis of centerline deviations will be performed. From these results a risk model may be developed to determine the best allowance of aircraft of varying landing gear configurations, wing spans, and approach speeds, to utilize runways and taxiways of various dimensional standards.

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • Centers of Excellence - Partnership to Enhance General Aviation Safety, Accessibility, and Sustainability


  • English


  • Status: Completed
  • Funding: $285,513
  • Contract Numbers:



  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Federal Aviation Administration

    William J. Hughes Technical Center, Atlantic City International Airport
    Atlantic City, NJ  United States  08405
  • Project Managers:

    Vitagliano, Lauren

  • Performing Organizations:

    Ohio State University, Center for Aviation Studies

    2036 Neil Avenue
    Bolz Hall, Suite 228
    Columbus, OH  United States  43210
  • Principal Investigators:

    Young, Seth

  • Start Date: 20140505
  • Expected Completion Date: 20160930
  • Actual Completion Date: 20160930
  • Source Data: PEGASAS Project 6

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01587301
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Partnership to Enhance General Aviation Safety, Accessibility and Sustainability
  • Contract Numbers: 12-C-GA-OSU-006,014, 12-C-GA-OSU-023
  • Files: RIP, USDOT
  • Created Date: Jan 19 2016 4:03PM