Technical Information

This information aims to clarify how the data presented has been derived or calculated.

For assistance with display issues, visit the Help page.

How suburbs are defined

Each suburb consists of the space within its normal geographic boundary, plus a buffer of 500 metres outside its defined boundary in each direction – see image at right. Aircraft that penetrate the buffer, as well as those inside the geographic suburb boundary, will count toward the statistics for the selected suburb.

The buffer is included to take into account that residents who live close to the geographic boundary of a suburb are likely to hear and see aircraft flying in the neighbouring suburb.

Suburbs and their associated buffers are defined as zones (spatial elements). The flight statistics provided for each suburb are derived from the number of times an aircraft penetrates/intersects the defined zone.

Altitudes are represented by ranges that increment by 1,000 feet up to 10,000 feet and thereafter by 2,000 feet up to 20,000 feet. For example, the altitude range of 7001+ indicates that flights depicted operate between 7,001 feet and 8,000 feet.

Newly-developed suburbs will be added to the portal once each year. If your suburb is not covered, please look at neighbouring suburbs until your suburb is incorporated.

Radar coverage affects flight counts

The flight counts presented have been generated using radar data from the radar located close to Sydney Airport. Radar requires a clear line of sight to the aircraft and so flights close to the ground can be obscured by hills and buildings.

As a result, flights close to the ground at a distance from the radar can be missing from the flight counts. While this is not an issue for aircraft flying in and out of Sydney Airport in close proximity to the radar, it can affect counts of aircraft operating further afield. In particular, the counts of circuit training flights near Bankstown and Camden airports can be affected as these flights remain at or under 1000 feet during each circuit. These flights may be under-counted if not visible to the radar while over a suburb, or over-counted if radar visibility comes and goes when flying over a suburb.

For this reason, in the Bankstown Airport statistics report, breakdowns are shown as percentages rather than total counts. As these radar gaps occur randomly throughout the day, the data, while incomplete, provides a representative picture of the weekly, hourly and day/night distribution of operations.

Sydney Airport operational statistics

In the Operations by direction, Runway usage and Hourly summary pages, the “Non-Jet” aircraft category includes Turboprops (T) and Propeller (P) aircraft only. Helicopters are not included.

On the Hourly summary page, when a specific day is selected in the ‘Operations by hour of day’ table, the ‘Average daily operations by hour of day’ chart will show a count of operations for that day, not the average. When no specific day is selected it shows the average.

On the Mode Usage page, the ‘Cumulative mode utilisation for year to date’ chart calculates from the start of the year to the end of the selected month. If a specific day is selected in the ‘Duration of mode use’ table, the cross-filter function will display minor changes in the chart to reflect the period from the start of the year to the day selected.

On the 34L departures page, the percentage of 34L departures maintaining runway heading is calculated using a defined formula:

Percentage 34L departures maintaining runway heading = Total of 34L departure operations maintaining runway heading / Total number of 34L departures

Noise monitoring report

Average, mininum, maximum and daily range calculations exclude days when the noise monitors collected no data. No data is collected when there is no correlated aircraft noise events, for example, when the flight path was not used.

Aircraft noise complaints report

Monthly complaints data describes complaints lodged in that calendar month. Depending on when in the month the matter was lodged, the investigation may not have been completed within the same month. Where an investigation reveals that the issue or classification initially assigned to the matter was not the most appropriate one, this will be corrected. This may result in incremental changes to issue or classification counts for a previous month.

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