In the last decade, Low Cost Carriers (LCCs) have increased greatly, both in terms of number of flights and the
number of passengers. This growth has occurred mainly in secondary airports, where air-transport was previously generally
private and/or military. The large increase in LCCs coupled with the consolidated urbanization around the secondary
airports has caused a substantial problem with environmental noise pollution. Currently, noise levels can be predicted using
advanced numerical models that require many inputs to give reliable results, substantial computational resources, and
high level know-how. For local communities and institutions, the implementation of such prediction models is often not
possible, and, at the same time, air-transport companies are not always required by law to predict noise impact induced by
changing flight operations.
Here, an effective low cost model for predicting noise levels around airports is presented. It is an advanced segmentation
model that is easily implemented. The model has been calibrated using a case study referring to field noise measurements
and predictions using consolidated models, such as INM (Integrated Noise Model, USA) and TNIP (Transparent Noise Information
Package, Australia). The results demonstrate good reliability, both in single event simulations and noise contour
predictions. Finally, the model has been applied to the planning of the third airport in Rome.