Energy resiliency is key to airports' future

Technology is moving faster than a jet during takeoff. Is your airport ready?

Like the birth of the automobile in the early 20th century, electric and alternative-fuel vehicles and aircraft are appearing at terminals and in our National Airspace System. Just as our predecessors paved roads and built gas stations to support the growth of automobiles, our 21st-century infrastructure must be reevaluated and constructed to accommodate changing transportation needs.

Staying at the forefront of technology

To keep up with the shift to electric and alternative fuels, airports must plan for alternative energy sources. Existing transmission system and power supplies will not always support modern airport needs, including the integration of new clean energy sources and growing air transportation ground fleet electrification. Proactive planning and initiatives can make the transition run smoothly and position airports for continued growth.

We at Hanson pride ourselves in working to stay at the forefront of these new horizons and helping shape the future. As part of that effort, we partnered with the Airport Cooperative Research Program (ACRP) to develop Research Report 260: Airport Energy Resiliency Roadmap, a document that outlines some of the planning steps airports must take to be future-ready. Hanson works in several energy management markets — including infrastructure, power, government and aviation — that collaborate to give clients the tools to plan their future.

Tuned in and ready

Todd Merrihew, P.E., a senior vice president and Hanson’s aviation market principal, recently rejoined Hanson after nearly two decades at an international engineering firm to provide cross-market energy management services for aviation clients. Todd’s background includes working nationally and internationally as an aviation engineer and aviation principal. His professional knowledge and broad experience, as well as his attention to detail, are already well known at Hanson, where he spent the first decade of his career.

“Moving our airport clients forward in the rapidly expanding areas of electrification and resiliency is a key aspect of our vision,” said Todd, who works at Hanson’s Chicago regional office. “Evolving technologies can move at a lightning pace, and it’s critical that airports understand the changes coming and are positioned for future success. Hanson’s diverse capabilities and forward-thinking staff will help us prepare our clients to meet that goal.”

The latest on resilience from ACRP

The Airport Energy Resiliency Roadmap provides a great start for forward-thinking airports to learn more about this topic. ACRP’s research provides airport executives with a useful guidebook on how to develop an energy resiliency roadmap. The document is available now at

This summer, Hanson will partner with Skyports, EVE Air Mobility and Florida Power and Light to present the latest technologies at the Florida Airports Council Annual Conference, which will feature a panel of experts discussing topics related to coming energy trends at airports. Be sure to join us Aug. 11-14 in Miami and check back soon on Ascend to read more about the ACRP Airport Energy Resiliency Roadmap!

Todd Merrihew can be reached at