Hanscom serves a full range of aircraft categories: jets, turboprops, twin engine pistons, single engine pistons and helicopters. There is both civilian and military activity conducted in these aircraft.
Each aircraft type within an aircraft category has distinctive noise characteristics. This is particularly relevant for the many different jets that use Hanscom, including military fighter jets, Boeing 737s, Learjets and small Citation jets.
Jets dominate the noise levels at Hanscom. However, activity by some of the noisiest jets has been decreasing in recent years. View the
Annual Noise Report. Types of Operations
Massport operates Hanscom Field as a premier general aviation (GA) airport with limited commercial service. On the civilian side, the airport has historically accommodated corporate aviation, private flying, charter, air taxi, pilot training, as well as scheduled commuter airline service and limited cargo operations.
Hanscom’s flight schools train pilots in piston engine aircraft. When a pilot is learning to land and depart, the training includes touch-and-goes. This is when the aircraft is brought in for a landing and continues down the runway to depart again without stopping. Usually touch-and-goes are conducted numerous times during a practice session, with the aircraft circling close to the airport between each landing.
Military operations represent less than one percent of the activity, but contribute 10 to 20 percent of the noise exposure. They include operations in all the aircraft types. Military aircraft are not subject Massport’s noise restrictions, and the current federal noise-related regulations only apply to civilian aircraft.