Building bridges: Andrea Medved of Dewbridge Engineering gives an overview of the basics of airbridge design. (Boarding Bridges).
Passenger Boarding Bridges (PBBs), those walkways between the terminal building and the aircraft, have been with us since the late 1950s. Today they are now almost a necessity at larger airports--and a big advantage for smaller ones. Passengers have grown accustomed to PBBs and do not expect anything less than protection from rain, snow and other elements on their walk to the aircraft.
Over four decades of boarding bridge history, various models have been put to the best use. Apron drive, radial drive, nose loader and over the wing, glass, or plain metal siding, today's PBBs are available in all shapes and sizes, appealing to individual buyers for the different advantages they offer.
An Apron Drive PBB PBB: see polybrominated biphenyl. is the traditional two- or three-tunnel bridge with simultaneous movement of outward (telescopic tel·e·scop·ic
1. Of or relating to a telescope.
2. Seen or obtained by means of a telescope: telescopic data.
3. ) and horizontal travel. It is the most popular with airport consultants as it is known for its flexibility in movement and can retract/extend from 30ft (9m) to 60ft (18m), depending on the specific model. This is ideal for use with multi-aircraft parking at one gate and at different positions. The Apron Drive PBB is designed for use with most jet aircraft, from regional jets to the wide-body Boeing -747, though its use with propeller propeller, device consisting of a hub with one or more blades that propels a craft to which it is attached by rotating its blades in a fluid such as air or water. aircraft is not recommended. Traditionally, Apron Drive PBBs required at least a 5ft (1.5m) pedestal pedestal
In Classical architecture, a support or base for a column, statue, vase, or obelisk. It may be square, octagonal, or circular. A single pedestal may also support a group of columns, or colonnade (see podium). base, limiting their use at regional airports. Recently Dewbridge Airport Systems in Ottawa, Canada, developed an Apron Drive model which can be installed directly to the concrete and which offers only a 12in (30cm) difference between the rotunda rotunda
In Classical and Neoclassical architecture, a building or room that is circular in plan and covered with a dome. The Pantheon is a Classical Roman rotunda. The Villa Rotonda at Vicenza, designed by Andrea Palladio, is an Italian Renaissance example. floor and the apron. This enables all grade level airports to use this flexible apron drive bridge for their jet aircraft. It should be noted that, as with all bridge models, the aircraft a bridge can service will directly depend on the terminal building height and on the length of the bridge and the apron slope.
The Radial Drive PBB has been around for a number of years, though only in the last five years has this style of bridge been brought back in vogue by Dewbridge Airport Systems, which has added features to make it the first PBB to cater to commuter and regional aircraft. Prior to this development, the configuration of today's commuter and regional aircraft prevented them from using the existing passenger boarding bridges. The advantage of the Regional Radial Drive PBB is that it is able to service propeller, commuter and regional aircraft as well as narrow-body jets up to the Boeing-757. The disadvantage is that although it has the traverse and lift capability of the apron drive, it has very limited telescopic motion. For applications where a propeller aircraft must be serviced, the radial PPB is the safest and most operator-friendly choice. Dewbridge, along with a few other manufacturers, offers this Radial Drive PBB as a grade level mountable product, in many cases, without the need for an expensive foundation other than existing concrete.
Nose Loader Bridges, or Pedestal Bridges, are PBBs with very limited movement. They are mounted to a fixed pedestal and will usually only telescope out a few feet to meet the aircraft door. Some models may have limited lateral motion in the cab, and vertical movement. These units are best suited to airports where the aircraft lead-in lines allow all aircraft passenger doors to end up in the same position, due to the bridge inflexibility. To offset this inflexibility, the Nose Loader has a minimum number of moving parts Moving parts are the components of a device that undergo continuous or frequent motion, most commonly rotation. "Parts" only include the mechanical components which does not include fuel, or any other gas or liquid. and is therefore relatively low in operational and maintenance costs as well as in initial investment. If the airport tail line limit is not a factor and the aircraft sizes not too varied, this is a popular choice. A very recent innovation is the `Over-the-Wing (OTW OTW Otherwise
OTW Off The Wall
OTW On the Way
OTW On the Whole
OTW Of The World (online TV network)
OTW On The Web
OTW Out the Window (display/graphics)
OTW On The Water )' Bridge. As most of those involved in the aviation field know, airlines make money when planes fly, and not when they sit on the ground. The question was--how to get quicker turn-around times? Enter the OTW Bridge, which combines the traditional Apron, Radial or Nose Loader Bridge at the front with a cantilevered Radial Bridge that reaches over the left wing to the rear aircraft, door. This allows simultaneous boarding and deplaning of the aircraft from both doors. This type of bridge has been in use for several years in Europe and is starting to make an appearance in North America North America, third largest continent (1990 est. pop. 365,000,000), c.9,400,000 sq mi (24,346,000 sq km), the northern of the two continents of the Western Hemisphere. . Its limiting factor A factor or condition that, either temporarily or permanently, impedes mission accomplishment. Illustrative examples are transportation network deficiencies, lack of in-place facilities, malpositioned forces or materiel, extreme climatic conditions, distance, transit or overflight rights, is expense, and the variety of aircraft serviceable with the rear bridge is limited and best suited to airlines operating only one or two types of aircraft.
The type of bridge has been picked, and now the options have to be faced. Glass bridges are becoming very popular in Europe, but they face fire regulation problems in North America, where the rules state that glass windows are prohibited. But these bridges are really glass-walled, not glass-windowed, and there is also the question of cost and cleaning. `Intelligent' bridges that can dock with the aircraft on their own have an obvious advantage, but many are reluctant to hand over control to a machine when expensive aircraft are involved. With heating, air-conditioning and ground power access, the options are endless.
Passenger Boarding Bridges provide a complete and seamless solution for the airport. In the end, the right bridge truly depends on the application and the ability of the person specifying that bridge to understand its application and all the constraints and limitations involved.