This document is divided into the following sections:

1.0 What is Global Reporting Format?

2.0 Why was GRF introduced?

3.0 Agencies involved

4.0 Elements of GRF

5.0 Initiation of reporting

6.0 Runway Condition Assessment Matrix

7.0 Runway Condition Report

8.0 Conclusion

1.0 What is Global Reporting Format (GRF)?

GRF is a standardized reporting format establishing a common language between all related parties at airports (Aerodrome Operator, Aircraft Operators, Pilots, ATC, AIM, MET, etc) for the description of surface conditions using Runway Condition assessment Matrix (RCAM). Its objective is to improve safety of aircraft operations and help mitigate the risk of runway excursions ( i.e. aircraft veering off the runway surface).

The GRF will be applicable globally on 4 Nov. 2021 after being delayed by a year because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

2.0 Why was GRF introduced?

Even after having existing reporting formats that have been used for years the reason why GRF was introduced is that present reporting of runway surface condition observed shortfall in taking into consideration all the runway conditions, accuracy, timeliness and uniformity in reporting formats.

3.0 Agencies involved

To establish an effective reporting format the following agencies work hand in hand.

  1. The Airport Operator: They assess the Runway condition and report the same in predefined format while giving detailed description of the surface
  2. ATS/AIS : They convey the information conveyed by the Airport Operator to the Aircraft Operator
  3. Pilots: They use the information to determine if landing or take off is safe

4.0 Elements of GRF

Now we know the story behind GRF so lets get started with the technical aspect behind GRF.

You will come across the following terms while discussing the subject:

  1. RWYCC (Runway Condition Code) : It is a code assigned to the condition of the Runway Surface based on judgement of trained personnel of the Airport Operator.
  2. RCAM (Runway Condition Assessment Matrix) : It is the matrix formed comprising of RWYCC and report of pilots braking action.
  3. RCR (Runway Condition Report) : This gives the full description of the runway surface and comprises of two elements i.e. the aeroplane performance section and the situational awareness section.

Description of Runway surface involves the following:

  • An assessment of surface conditions by a trained observer( Airport Operator) who, using a globally harmonized matrix given below, allocates a Runway Condition Code (RWYCC) to each third of a runway (for effective reporting the runway is divided into three parts and each part or each third is reported individually), staring with lower runway designator (09-27, so we will start from 09) which includes assessment of the following :
    • Coverage of contaminant
    • Runway Surface Condition and type of Contaminant
    • Depth of Contaminant
  • Based on the above assessment RWYCCs are determined and thus Runway Condition Report (RCR)
  • RCR is then forwarded to air traffic and aeronautical information services for transmission to the flight crew by NOTAM, SNOWTAM, ATIS and if necessary radio broadcast
  • RCR is then correlated to aircraft performance data by the flight crew, enabling them to calculate their takeoff or landing performance
  • Flight crew then can provide their own observation of runway surface conditions, confirming the RWYCC or alerting to changing conditions.

5.0 Initiation of Reporting

When it seems to be a significant change in runway surface condition due to water, snow, slush, ice or frost i.e. any change is RWYCC, contaminated type, coverage, depth reporting is initiated and the same is continuously reported until the runway stands no more contaminated. Any significant report by flight crew regarding runway braking action initiate upgrading or downgrading of RWYCC as explained further below.

Significant changes in depth of contaminant refers to the following:

For Non-Winter Operations:

For Winter Operations:

6.0 Runway Condition Assessment Matrix

After judging the condition of the runway the airport operator assigns a RWYCC to the runway from the table below. Aerodromes are classified based on the climatic condition they are exposed to for reporting of RWYCC i.e. the ones exposed to snow (that use full RWYCC format) and the ones that are not exposed to snow ( Use RWYCC format for water contaminant only i.e. codes 6,5,3,2 only). Since In India we do not face snow at our airports the only modified version of the table is used.

Further the flight crew reports the runway braking action as follows:

Now based on the above two reports ( runway surface description and pilot report of runway braking action) Runway Condition Assessment Matrix (RCAM) is formed by combining the above two table as follows:

7.0 Runway Condition Report

RCR comprises of the following two sections:

The following are the 8 elements of Aeroplane Performance Section:

Elements under Aeroplane Performance Section

The following are the 11 elements of Situational Awareness Section:

Elements under Situational Awareness Section

M = Mandatory reporting

C= Conditional for reporting

O= Optional reporting

The form given below is filled which reflects all the above information

Attached below is how a typical RCR looks like

8.0 Conclusion

The implementation of GRF will require training of all the involved stakeholders which should be taken up as a priority as the date for the implementation of GRF is not very far. So are you ready?

5 thoughts on “Global Reporting Format

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