Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport (MSP)—For Pilots
Pilots play an important role in continuing the tradition of environmental excellence at MSP. This page is designed to provide information to pilots about noise issues and abatement procedures at MSP including operational procedures, and tips on how pilots can help minimize noise impacts. Detailed MSP noise abatement information is also available through WhisperTrack.
Noise Sensitive Arrivals
Several residential neighborhoods around MSP are impacted by aircraft noise as aircraft arrive to the airport and establish themselves on the final approach path (especially Runways 35, 12L and 12R). Additional noise is created by the increased drag and disruption of airflow along an aircraft’s surface when a pilot extends the aircraft landing gear. The frequency and concentration of arriving aircraft and the additional noise created by early aircraft gear extensions have caused concern for impacted neighborhoods and have been the source of several aircraft noise-related complaints.
HOW PILOTS CAN HELP WITH ARRIVAL OPERATIONS AT MSP:
When possible, and in compliance with ATC clearances/aircraft standard operating procedures, delay extending your landing gear until it is necessary for a safe landing. Doing so will minimize the additional noise exposure over residential areas created by the extended landing gear.
Noise Abatement Departure Profiles
Noise Abatement Departure Profiles (NADP) were designed to reduce noise exposure for residents living close into an airport (within 3.5 miles/close-in procedure) or further out (beyond 3.5 miles/distant procedure) from an airport. The MAC has designated the distant procedure for runways at MSP: 4/22, 12L/30R, 12R/30L and 17. The Distant NADP, sometimes referred to as the “Standard” procedure, is designed to benefit residents further from the airport (beyond 3.5 miles). Pilots should consult their aircraft’s operating handbook/flight manual to fly the company-specified distant NADP.
HOW PILOTS CAN HELP WITH NADPs:
Follow the procedures outlined in your aircraft operating handbook or flight manual to ensure proper implementation of the Distant NADP. Fly the procedure each and every time you depart MSP.
Eagan-Mendota Heights Departure Corridor
The area immediately southeast of MSP, beyond the Minnesota River, is purposely developed as commercial/industrial, which is an ideal area for aircraft to overfly when they depart Runways 12L and 12R.
Whenever possible, Air Traffic Control (ATC) will direct departing jet aircraft to Runways 12L and 12R so that they will over-fly the corridor and stay within the corridor boundaries. ATC will assign specific headings depending on which runway the aircraft is departing from: headings for jet aircraft are inclusive of 090 degrees, 105 degrees and 120 degrees. A wind-corrected heading may also be assigned.
Turboprop aircraft will be assigned a non-corridor heading so that the corridor does not become congested and can be used for jet aircraft departures.
HOW PILOTS CAN HELP WITH THE CORRIDOR:
Compliance with the corridor procedure is largely dependent on ATC and its ability to assign a corridor heading and/or a wind-corrected heading. Pilots should anticipate a corridor heading (or wind-corrected heading) and should precisely follow the assigned headings. By precisely following assigned headings, a greater percentage of jet operations will remain within the corridor boundaries and reduce noise impact on nearby communities. The MAC analyzes the Eagan-Mendota Heights Corridor use and publishes a monthly report for reference. Click here to view the Eagan-Mendota Heights Corridor Report.
Runway 17 Turbojet Departure Procedure
Runway 17/35 is 8,000 feet in length and opened October 27, 2005. To help make the runway a success, the MAC gained approval for an innovative procedure off Runway 17 that reduces noise impacts for residents in close proximity to the departure end. The success of this runway procedure is largely dependent on minimizing noise impacts from operations on this runway to the greatest extent possible.
The procedure is identified as the “Runway 17 Turbojet Departure Procedure”. The Runway 17 Departure Procedure is implemented via ATC instructions to the pilots. The FAA issued a notice (MSP AT N7110.208) stating “All aircraft departing Runway 17 that will be assigned a heading west of runway heading by the Tower shall initially be instructed to fly runway heading. The controller shall issue the appropriate westbound heading after the aircraft is observed reaching the 3.03 DME DBRITE marking.”
HOW PILOTS CAN HELP WITH THE RUNWAY 17 TURBOJET DEPARTURE PROCEDURES:
Familiarize yourself with the Runway 17 Turbojet Departure Procedure as the primary procedure for Runway 17 departures and precisely follow ATC instructions. During low-demand time periods pilots may receive instructions to perform slightly modified procedures such as the Runway 17 River Published Departure Procedure or the Runway 17 River Departure Heading Procedure. Successful implementation of these procedures will help to reduce residential noise impacts from Runway 17 departures. The MAC analyzes the Runway 17 Departures and publishes a monthly report for reference. Click here to view the Runway 17 Departure Analysis Report.