In order to provide assistance to airport designers and a reasonable amount of uniformity in the design of airport facilities for aircraft operations, design guidelines have been prepared by the FAA and the ICAO . Any design criteria involving the widths, gradients, separations of runways, taxiways, and other features of the aircraft operations area must necessarily incorporate wide variations in aircraft performance, pilot technique, and weather conditions.
The FAA design criteria provide uniformity at airport facilities in the United States and serve as a guide to aircraft manufacturers and operators with regard to the facilities which may be expected to be available in the future. The FAA design standards are published in Advisory Circulars which are revised periodically as the need arises . The ICAO strives toward uniformity and safety on an international level. Its standards, which are very similar to the FAA standards, apply to all member nations of the Convention on International Civil Aviation.
The design standards prepared by the FAA and the ICAO are presented in the text which follows under the general headings of airport classification, runways, taxiways, and aprons. The material is organized so that the various criteria may be readily compared. It is incumbent upon airport planners to review the latest specifications for airport design at the time studies are undertaken due to the fact that changes are incorporated as conditions dictate.