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An application of damage cost allocation for airport services in Ireland
2004-10, Feighan, Kieran, Reynolds-Feighan, Aisling J.
This paper describes a procedure developed for the estimation of marginal damage costs for airfield pavements in order to establish off-peak airport charges at Irish airports. The Commission for Aviation Regulation has regulated Irish airports with more than one million passengers per annum since 2001. The Irish government in order to separate the ownership and regulatory functions that had both been vested with the Minister for Transport established the Commission. The three main international airports are owned and operated by the publicly owned Aer Rianta. The relationships between the airport authority and its main customers had become increasingly hostile and confrontational on issues including landing charges in the previous five years. PMS Pavement Management Services Ltd was engaged by the Commission to develop a methodology for off-peak marginal costs based on damage caused to airport facilities. The procedure developed uses the ICAO Aircraft Classification Number (ACN) to determine and allocate damage costs among different aircraft types for charges in off-peak periods. A total of 18 aircraft damage categories were determined for aircraft using Dublin Airport, based on a combination of ACN and Maximum Take-Off Weight (MTOW). The predicted maintenance and rehabilitation costs for the airport pavement infrastructure were allocated among the damage categories. An equivalent cost per tonne for 5 aircraft cost categories was subsequently developed to simplify the administration of the system by the airport authorities. The system has replaced the previous charging system based on MTOW only, and is in operation since 2001. The charging mechanism more closely reflects the actual damage induced by different aircraft, and is encouraging airline operators to consider alternative aircraft types and gear configurations that induce lower damage for similar MTOW. Some modifications have been incorporated into the charging scheme based on a 2 year review of the system in 2003. Ultimately it is intended to require aircraft operators to certify ACN values rather than MTOW on an ongoing basis at Dublin Airport.