May 2022 – As featured in Canada’s premier Aviation publication, Wings Magazine. CEO Todd Burns challenges current government specifications to make way for Cypher’s DUST/BLOKR®, a more affordable and the most environmentally-friendly solution for unpaved runways, tarmacs and airstrips.
CLEARING THE AIR
ARE WE OVERDUE TO TRY OTHER DUST PALLIATIVES ON UNPAVED RUNWAYS? – BY CARROLL MCCORMICK
This summer the 5,400-foot runway in Sanirajak (formerly Hall Beach) on Mellville Peninsula will receive a dust control treatment developed by Winnipeg-based Cypher Environmental. This Cypher first for a Canadian airport may help overcome what the company argues is an unjustified impediment to considering its product to control runway dust and flying gravel.
Transport Canada, arbiter of most things in Canadian aviation other than air traffic control, offers guidance on runway dust control in Section 8.3 of Advisory Circular (AC) 300-004 – Unpaved Runway Surfaces. The AC “is provided for information and guidance purposes. It describes an example of acceptable means, but not the only means, of demonstrating compliance with regulations and standards.” Calcium chloride and other salt-based materials are not to be used, because they can damage aircraft. Certain asphalt types are acceptable and may be diluted with water. Other, non-corrosive “dust palliatives,” may also be used.
Dig a little deeper, however, and Transport Canada acknowledges that there are no regulations or standards for Section 8.3 to comply to. “Transport Canada has no specific regulation related to runway dust control suppressant,” other than that, “… chemicals that may have harmful effects on aircraft or pavements are not to be used on the movement area of an aerodrome certified as airport.”
To prove that their products are aircraft-safe, vendors like Cypher and Canton, Ohio-based Midwest Industrial Supply, which makes a dust palliative called EK35, may cite that they are certified to Boeing #D6-17487 Revision T (Airport Approved).
AC 300-004 notwithstanding, dust palliatives in Canada seem not to be chosen solely on their merits; rather, to qualify, they follow a specification borrowed from Alaska, according to Todd Burns, CEO and founder of Cypher Environmental. “All the provinces adopted the specifications, which includes EK35 as the only approved product. The only concern they have with water is that… the product must be ready-to-use. Our products are specifically designed to be concentrated to reduce the environmental impact greenhouse gasses] and cost of shipping to remote locations.”
EK35 comes ready to use. Cypher’s product, called DUST/BLOKR®, is delivered as a concentrate, at about half the volume of EK35, mixed with water on-site, and then applied.
About Cypher Environmental: Cypher Environmental is a leading global environmental solution provider for dust control and road stabilization. With ESG (Environmental Social Governance) and CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) principles at the core of every decision we make, we proudly boast the tag line, “Always do what’s right.”.
About DUST/BLOKR®: DUST/BLOKR® is a technology consisting of natural ingredients specifically engineered for unpaved airstrips, runways, helipads, and tarmacs. Applicable to almost any material type, it is applied using standard equipment and techniques. It is both EPA Safer Choice certified and conforms with BSS7432 (D6-17487) standards.
About Wings Magazine: Wings Magazine is Canada’s only premiere national aviation magazine, providing comprehensive coverage of commercial, corporate, general and military aviation in Canada and around the world.