Researchers are testing quieter approaches to Zurich

Researchers are testing quieter approaches at Zurich Airport. The noise is to be reduced with a new assistance system by up to a quarter, as the scientists reported on Tuesday. The software makes specifications as to when the aircraft should sink or when the landing gear should be extended.

Dispute over aircraft noise has been weighing on relations between Germany and Switzerland for decades. The airport in Zurich-Kloten is only about 15 kilometers south of the German border. Both sides negotiated an international agreement on flight routes and noise pollution in 2012.

However, that was never ratified in Germany. Germany still demands improvements to noise protection.

This week is a test aircraft of the German Aerospace Center (DLR) in use. Pilots fly with an Airbus A320 approaches with and without using the assistance system. At about 300 meters, they break off the landing approach and fly a loop for the next landing approach.

The data are then evaluated by the Skylab Foundation, the DLR and the Swiss research institution Empa. By the end of the week about 70 approaches are planned according to the researchers. The noise is measured at two stations in Germany and at five stations in Switzerland.

This article is a translation of the German