Shore protection for airports

Sumburgh 3

Xbloc Sumburgh Airport, Shetland Island ©Ronnie Robertson-

The Xbloc and XblocPlus system is ideal to protect the shore near airports. If the runway is located at the shore or if a land reclamation is planned to realize the airport, the shore can be easily protected by either of the two systems (or a combination of both).

The advantages of applying Xbloc are XblocPlus compared to other concrete armor systems or rock protection are:

  • Resilience to climate change;
  • Reduced need for maintenance;
  • Reduced construction costs thanks to reduced material quantities;
  • Less CO2 emission due to reduced material quantities.

1,700 Xbloc units have been used to protect the runway of Sumburgh Airport, Shetland Island in the United Kingdom. The runway is exposed to extreme waves as shown in the photos below. The construction of the wave protection was a challenging operation with restrictions due to the continuous operation of the runway as well as by the frequent storm events which forced the contractor to work under extreme conditions. Despite this, the runway protection was sucessfully completed in 2015.