Standard Article

Video Landing Parameter Surveys

Aerospace Applications

Aircraft Systems

  1. Thomas DeFiore1,
  2. Richard P. Micklos2

Published Online: 15 SEP 2009

DOI: 10.1002/9780470061626.shm138

Encyclopedia of Structural Health Monitoring

Encyclopedia of Structural Health Monitoring

How to Cite

DeFiore, T. and Micklos, R. P. 2009. Video Landing Parameter Surveys. Encyclopedia of Structural Health Monitoring. .

Author Information

  1. 1

    Atlantic City International Airport, US Federal Aviation Administration, NJ, USA

  2. 2

    PE, Warminster, PA, USA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 15 SEP 2009


In an effort to better understand and document the actual operational environment of jet aircraft landing impact conditions, the US Navy, and, later, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) initiated a series of aircraft video landing parameter surveys at high-activity airfields, both civil and military, and on aircraft carriers. By collecting and analyzing large quantities of video data for a wide variety of aircraft, the original design criteria and fatigue-life estimates for aircraft landing gear and support structures can be assessed and verified.

Video landing parameter surveys are a joint research effort of the US Navy and FAA to acquire and evaluate aircraft landing impact conditions. Field research teams temporarily install video camera(s) on the apron of the runway or catwalk of an aircraft carrier. These cameras record high-resolution video images of an aircraft's touchdown event. The images are subsequently digitized and analyzed along with individual model airplane geometry to calculate at touchdown: sink speed, ground/air speed, pitch, roll, yaw, distance from threshold (or carrier ramp), and other parameters describing the touchdown event. Reports containing processed results are published and most of them are available in the public domain. Video surveys have been conducted on 8 commercial airfields, 6 military airfields, and over 11 aircraft carriers. These surveys are the only research of its kind in the international aviation industry. The objective of US Navy surveys is to validate the MIL-A-8863 sink-speed fatigue spectrum. FAA landing parameter surveys assess the continued suitability requirements in 14 CFR Part 25.473 for a limit descent velocity of 10 ft s−1 at touchdown and the sink-speed fatigue spectrum previously used by airframe manufacturers, NASA TN D 4529.


  • video;
  • surveys;
  • parameters;
  • landing;
  • sink-speed;
  • fatigue;
  • spectrum;
  • transports;
  • design;
  • certification