ProFAA Interface (Click to Zoom)


ProFAA is a software developed by the FAA to evaluate airport pavement roughness and smoothness from airport pavement profiles. The software offers various pavement indexes including the Boeing Bump Index (BBI), the International Roughness Index (IRI), the Straightedge Index (SE), the RMS Bandpass (BP), and the CA Profile Index (PI). ProFAA can also simulate the McDonnell Douglas DC-9 and DC-10, and the Boeing 727 (B727) and 747 (B747).


Each index can be evaluated different ways. Each index is plotted and can be viewed against the pavement profile. The average or RMS value is displayed for the total pavement section. In addition, ProFAA can be configured to evaluate each index over a section length. The results can be seen in the “Show Bars” graph, or in the output file generated by “Process All (PDF)”. ProFAA also provides probability distribution function graphs for the SE and the BBI.


ProFAA’s straightedge index can be configured several ways. There are four different straightedge simulation methods available, and the length of the straightedge in each of the simulations can be configured. The straightedge simulations provided are physical straightedge: deviation over full length, physical straightedge: deviation between supports, rolling straightedge: deviation over full length, and two-wheel profilograph: deviation at center. Each of these can be used to analyze a different aspect of pavement smoothness.


The Boeing Bump Index is computed as is described in Advisory Circular 150/5380-9. The BBI is used to evaluate runway roughness by identifying unacceptable bumps in the pavement. The BBI is a single event bump index that is based on the Boeing Bump method. The BBI categorizes bumps in terms of bump height and bump length as either acceptable, excessive, or unacceptable as shown below in the following figures.


Single Event Bump - Roughness Acceptance Criteria (Click to Zoom)


Boeing Bump Index Roughness Criteria (Click to Zoom)


The Profilograph index is configured to conform to FAA Advisory Circular 150/5370-10, and is used for construction acceptance in Advisory Circular 150/5370-10H. The Profilograph index is used evaluate pavement smoothness. In ProFAA, it uses a 0.2-inch banking band. The model for the device used in ProFAA is shown below.


Profilograph Model (Click to Zoom)


The IRI is an index based on the quarter car model. The model assumes a car traveling at highway speed, and the response of car as it travels across the pavement generates the IRI. IRI is commonly used to evaluate the roughness of highway pavement. A higher IRI indicates a more uncomfortable ride in a car.


The Bandpass index is the output of a bandpass filter applied to the profile. The band pass filter’s cutoff frequencies can be configured in ProFAA, and the average value displayed is the RMS of the bandpass filtered profile.



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