When an aircraft lands on a runway the wheels are momentarily stationary since they haven’t been moving in mid-air, and as they touch the runway surface they drag under the full weight of the aircraft for a few instants before they start moving (spin-up time). During this time rubber polymerises and hardens to the runway surface. This unwanted rubber coating affects the friction level of the runway and results in a reduction in braking and ground handling performance. If left untreated this could result in lateral slide of aircraft during takeoff and landing, and potentially runway overrun during landing procedures.
Naturally, rubber removal is incorporated into an airfield’s maintenance schedules, dependent on the takeoff and landing volumes. Bridgepoint Road Markings is involved with tyre rubber removal at both commercial and private airfields, including Belfast International Airport at Aldergrove, County Antrim.
Particularly in the airline industry, due to the huge cost of even minimal travel delays, we understand from our experience in this area that we must work in complete accordance with the airfield operator’s time constraints, and we must complete the removal work quickly, efficiently and safely.
We use the following methods to remove runway rubber: