SFO maintains a state-of-the-art permanent noise monitoring system to keep track of noise levels in communities around the Airport.
SFO has had a Noise Monitoring System in operation for many years. With 29 monitors located around the Bay Area and four portable units, the system keeps track of noise levels in communities surrounding the Airport. Information produced from the Noise Monitoring System is central to the operations of the Aircraft Noise Abatement Office.
It serves as the basis for:
- Identifying overall trends in noise levels (Residential
Sound Insulation Program)
- Evaluating airline compliance with noise abatement
flight tracks, including the Fly Quiet Program
- Following up on unusual occurrences
- Monitoring preferential runway use programs
- Validating the accuracy of CNEL noise contour models
As part of its continuing effort to maintain a state-of-the-art noise abatement office, SFO has installed a new Aircraft Noise Monitoring System. This system includes new digital noise monitoring units, additional noise monitors in San Mateo County communities and an integrated system that collects flight, operational, complaint and weather data in one location. In addition, the system provides more technical information for enhanced data analysis and real-time collection of aircraft flight track data. This information serves as a basis for the Fly Quiet Program quarterly reports and the Monthly Director’s Report, both published by the Airport Noise Abatement Office. It also includes a Visitor Center for Public Display at the SFO Airport Noise Abatement Office.
Flight tracks can be analyzed to determine:
- Origin and/or destination of a flight
- Actual flight path over the ground
- Altitude over any given location
- Aircraft type
- Time of operation
This information is very useful in monitoring compliance with noise abatement procedures and in devising new procedures that may be implemented by the FAA.
The upgraded noise monitoring system has an improved ability to account for low frequency noise, an issue of particular interest to communities close to the airport and will include a more sophisticated data analysis and reporting system than is currently available.