Performance Assessment of a Hybrid Radar and Electro-Optical Foreign Object Debris Detection System
In 2007, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Airport Technology Branch conducted a performance assessment of the FODetect®, a hybrid radar and electro-optical foreign object debris (FOD) detection system developed by Xsight Systems, Ltd. This assessment included the system’s capability to detect objects of various shapes, sizes, and materials at all locations on the runway surface. The system’s capability to detect FOD during both nighttime and daytime conditions, in periods of sun, rain, mist, fog, and snow, was also assessed.
The FODetect system was initially demonstrated in January 2008. Following the demonstration, a more comprehensive performance assessment of the technology was conducted at the Boston Logan International Airport. The performance assessment was initiated in June 2008 with a test schedule that continued until May 2009. Researchers conducted several test sessions to assess the FODetect’s capability to detect selected FOD items. The tests focused on hybrid sensor characteristics, specifically the joint capabilities of radar and electro-optical sensors operating together.
The FODetect system was able to detect the objects of various shapes, sizes, and materials on runway surfaces and perform satisfactorily in nighttime, daytime, sun, rain, mist, fog, and snow conditions, as required by FAA Advisory Circular 150/5220-24, “Airport Foreign Object Debris (FOD) Detection Equipment.”
Authors: Edwin E. Herricks, Elizabeth Woodworth, and James Patterson, Jr.