In the Spotlight

Featured here are articles covering notable activities within the Airport Technology Research & Development Branch.

The FAA is paving the way to better airport pavements

Apr 30, 2021

The FAA is paving the way to better airport pavements.  Airport pavement research and test section construction at NAPMRC and NAPTF explained in short videos.



Comparative Performance of Different Warm-Mix Asphalt Technologies Under the Influence of High Aircraft Tire Pressure and Temperature

Apr 17, 2021

High temperature rutting test results from TC-2 at NAPMRC on P-401 HMA and WMA are presented in a paper titled “Comparative Performance of Different Warm Mix Asphalt Technologies under the Influence of High Aircraft Tire Pressure and Temperature” published by Transportation Research Record – Journal of the Transportation Research Board.

The paper can be accessed at:

BAKFAA Version 3.3.0 Release

Aug 31, 2020

The FAA’s BAKFAA version 3.3.0 software performs back-calculation of pavement material properties using Heavy Weight Deflectometer/Falling Weight Deflectometer (HWD/FWD) data and is now available at .  This release includes upgrades that improve functionality and enhances the user’s experience. Below are highlights in this release.

•    Version 3.3.0 is set up as a .Net application that runs in the Windows environment.
•    Upgrades to graphical displays for: Showing both measured and calculated deflections; Values back-calculated for layer moduli for each layer in the pavement structure; and LTE calculations in the main window.
•    Output files that include LTE calculations based on a user’s preference.
•    Conversion of a manufacturers FWD proprietary file formats into AASHTO PDDX format.
•    Enabling users to delete drops considered anomalies, without changing the original FWD file.
•    Sample files containing FWD input files detailed examples on how to conduct back-calculation, and .csv output files are provided for multiple types of pavement structures.
•    Error reporting and pop up messages guide the user to select different values and run the software.
•    Help files were updated with step-by-step guides for each function.
The FAA provides BAKFAA to allow airport pavement practitioners access to a powerful HWD/FWD data analyzing tool. BAKFAA enables accurate assessments of pavement remaining life and optimization of rehabilitation design.

Airport Technology and Research provides continuous support for the software component of the FAA’s Advisory Circulars used by airports and engineering consultants across the nation. BAKFAA is referenced in both AC 150/5320-6F, Airport Pavement Design and Evaluation, and AC 150/5370-11B, Use of Nondestructive Testing in the Evaluation of Airport Pavements.

Previous Versions of BAKFAA:
BAKFAA (2017-09-29)
BAKFAA20130401 (2013-04-01)

FAA Airport Pavement representatives bring expertise to ISAIA 2019

Aug 1, 2019

FAA’s Dr. David Brill and Dr. Navneet Garg will be travelling to Singapore on the invitation of Singapore Aviation Academy (SAA). Dr. Garg will be delivering the Keynote Address at the 3rd International Symposium on Airfield Infrastructure of Airports (ISAIA 2019) – Airfields for Future-Generation Aircraft, to be held on August 29 – 30, 2019. This annual symposium serves as a nexus for knowledge sharing and brings together airport practitioners and academia to discuss innovative concepts, strategies and best practices in airfield infrastructure planning and development, technical know-how and best practices of different airports with focus on airfields for future-generation aircraft. The first two runs of the symposiums were attended by more than 250 delegates including airport engineering professionals, industry practitioners, and academia from the region.

On August 28, 2019, Dr. Brill and Dr. Garg will conduct Runway Pavement Design Workshop on August 28, 2019. The objective of the workshop is for FAA to share and coach the airport operators in the region on FAA’s latest Advisory Circular AC 150/5370-10H. FAA will also share collaboration with ICAO on the revision of the ACN-PCN methodology to a renewed ACR-PCR system for airports, and share ACR/PCR method’s benefits: the optimized usage of pavements, consistency between pavement design and aircraft admissibility parameters etc. The new FAARFIELD 2.0, and PANDA software and its applications will also be addressed at this workshop.

FAA's Dr. Navneet Garg recognized with ASCE award

Jun 10, 2019

Airport Technology’s own Dr. Navneet Garg has been named as recipient of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Transportation and Development Institute (T&DI)’s 2018 Airfield Pavements Practitioner Award.

Dr. Garg’s honor is a particularly unique one. While the award is usually given to pavement engineer practitioners and seldom to researchers, his research stands out in its practical nature and real world utility.

Dr. Garg emphasizes the importance of sharing research findings with airport pavement engineering professionals. As both Vice Chair of the Airfield Pavements Committee of ASCE and Chairman of the International Society of Asphalt Pavements (ISAP) Working Group on Accelerated Pavement Testing (APT), he arranges TRB sessions and other opportunities “to bring researchers and the practitioner together in one forum.” Dr. Garg recently brought participants from Directorate General of Civil Aviation (France), Airbus, and Boeing together with researchers and practicing engineers at pavement materials and design workshop in Brazil. He has also served multiple three-year terms as a member on TRB committees including Accelerated Pavement Testing (AFD40), General and Emerging Pavement Design (AFD30), Geotechnical Instrumentation and Modeling (AFS20), and Aggregates (AFP70).

Through the Airport Cooperative Research Program (ACRP), Dr. Garg proudly mentors one or two students each year via one-year research grants to investigate airport pavement-related projects. Shear failures in asphalt surfaces and life cycle assessment of airport pavements are just a couple of many collaborations to date.

 Dr. Garg’s pavement engineering expertise and leadership capabilities have been honed during his 21-year tenure at the FAA (nine years as a support contractor and 12 years as an FAA employee). He started working at the National Airport Pavement Test Facility (NAPTF) in 1998, and would later propose an outdoor testing facility concept that has vastly expanded FAA’s pavement testing capabilities—the world class HVS-A “Mark VI” and the National Airport Pavement Research Center (NAPMRC), which was approved in 2009 and completed in 2015. He attributes the success of NAPMRC and other endeavors to supportive colleagues and management. Dr. Garg manages both the NAPMRC and Field Instrumentation and Testing programs for the Airport Technology Research and Development branch.

The Airfield Pavement Practitioner Award will be presented to Dr. Garg at the ASCE T&DI International Airfield and Highway Pavements Conference in Chicago, IL (July 21-24, 2019).