The Airfield Mats Difference

Why Airfield Mats?



It’s common today that airport lighting projects now include a general specification for a mat to be placed around runway lights.

These mats are intended to provide several benefits:
1) To keep mowing equipment further from the light to help prevent accidental breakage.
2) To alleviate the need to use manual line trimming to keep the grass managed around the lights.
3) To prevent the need to spray poison (i.e. “Agent Orange”) around the lights that kills the grass and then leads to erosion.


The Mission is to provide a barrier around the light post large enough that mower equipment can be adequately accommodated.

The need for such a solution is highly obvious to an airport manager and airport maintenance crews. Getting the right size mat installed is important.

Our Mats are Actually Large Enough to effectively:
• Prevent Tall Grass around Lights
• Prevent Erosion
• Reduce Breakage

Larger Airfield Mat Systems elliptical mats accomplish what the smaller, popularly advertised mats do not. The elliptical or football mats are 7 feet long and 4 feet wide; realistically complementing the mowing path around runway lights.

Mower equipment can overlap the edge of the mat, completely cutting all the vegetation around the light. There is no need to return to the light with a line trimmer or to spray an erosion causing herbicide.

Mower equipment can pass over the mat, cutting the grass without the use of line trimmers while staying a safe distance from lighting fixtures.

Durable mats made from recycled rubber with polyurethane binders. The mats anchor to the ground with galvanized steel anchors. Lawn mower equipment can pass over the mat cutting all the grass without the use of line trimmers while still staying a safe distance from the light.

NOTE THE SIZE DIFFERENCE of these two mats. The larger one covers about 5 times the ground and is 8 times more accommodating to a mower due to its patented shape and anchoring design.

The Airfield Mat Systems Football ($285*) mat overlaps and can be installed over the other’s $115* mat.

More economically, The Airfield Mat Systems Football Mat comes with its own insert for only $22*:

Yes that’s right. The $22* collar insert for the Football Mat provides about the same benefit of the other’s $115* mat!

Now it does cost more and YOU GET MUCH MORE; 5-8 times more. The airport can pay about $285* and get a true solution. The Larger mat saves the airports on ground poisons, prevents erosion, and eliminates manually trimming around each light. Experience the cost savings benefits that smaller mats cannot live up to. Why waste $115* on a place holder, with little or no benefit, that doesn’t work and still requires manual attention around each light to maintain the grass?


The patented anchoring system and elongated “football” shape was designed to allow maintenance crews with larger mowers to mow in a line, from light-to-light and make only one pass on each side of the light. The Football Mat is 4 feet wide by 7 feet long. The Football Mat uses 8 ground anchors to secure it in place. Mowers can move in a more natural mowing arc around airfield lights, expediting the mowing process even further. The Airfield Mats are large enough to prevent lights from disappearing into the tall grass letting the mowing crew better visually identify the light location preventing “accidental breakage”. Other smaller mats do not accomplish this same efficiency and often still require line-trimming to complete the job. When lighting, sign and fencing projects are bid under the Airport Improvement Programs(AIP) this Airfield Mat System qualifies as part of the funded project. Plan on protecting your airport’s investment with the time and cost savings of the Airfield Mat system.  See our documents page for AIP funding info

Reviewing the mowing path taken by the mowing vehicles
it can be concluded the football mat the most optimal design.
Mowers weave around the perimeter of a light as they proceed along a directional path down the runway or taxiway. The blue line depicts the path of a mower decks edge as it passes by a light.

A = Recommended
B&C = Less Desirable

“I save money and the value of my time having the large mats around the lights at the airport. About $10-15 per light, per month… less labor, no need for herbicides, less wear and tear on my equipment and me. They keep the lights looking tidy.”

Jerry Leturmy, Maintenance Contractor, Boca Raton, Florida


“The small rounds ones, they didn’t impress me none. Tried to cut over them, had to orbit them, they didn’t stay in place…. The football ones, the mower goes over them really nice, they will save me a lot of time and a lot of trouble.”

Sparky, Airport Mgr., Benton County Airport, Camden Tennessee

It is important that the efficient end result is accomplished. Too often, in efforts to cut corners, smaller inadequate mat sizes are settled for. Look out for the BEST interest of your airport. Insist on the right solution. Whether you are the airport manager, the engineer, the consultants or contractor be knowledgeable about the Airfield Mat Systems Football Mat as the best solution that will have the best end results.

In the same way the new LED lights save lots of money on the “backend” in electrical utility bills and light bulb replacement. These mats save lots of money on the “backend” in labor, material and time costs. The right time to implement them is NOW and in future projects. When implementing them now financing can be arranged to accommodate reoccurring budget requirements. When implemented in future projects AIP and other funding options are available. Make sure the funding goes towards the actual solution not just a settled for oversized Frisbee.


This voice generally needs to pass through several levels of authority before the airport implement the solution. The airport managers, airport engineers consultants, state project managers, state engineers, project engineers, state and federal funding, suppliers, general contractors, electrical contractors and finally the installation crews can all contribute before the airfield gets to experience the benefits of the airfield mats.


See our NAFTA certificate on our documents page


The Airfield Mats Anchoring System features:

  • Zero Profile Anchors
  • Allow Mowing Equipment Overlap
    Prevents Mats from Being Dislodged
  • All our anchoring formats have been tested against the military V-22 Osprey tilt-rotor aircraft
  • All Airfield Mats installed at Boca Raton Airport remained anchored in place and did not move during Hurricane Wilma
  • Easy one person installation with a 3-5 pound sledge
  • If an impenetrable obstacle is encountered a straight hammer 5/8” drill bit
    can be used to pilot the hole for the straight anchor.

Performance Results Report

In January of 2005 The Boca Raton Airport installed the Airfield Mats on each of its runway lights. These mats are anchored by the Airfield Mats Systems’ Anchoring System.

On October 24, 2005, Hurricane Wilma presented the Boca Raton Airport with a direct hit and winds estimated at 120 miles per hour.

The Airport suffered extreme damage to countless aircraft and almost every structure on the airfield. Hanger doors were complete ripped off many of the T-Hangers. Two very large corporate hangers completely collapsed in the force of Hurricane Wilma winds.

Upon inspection of the airfield it was found that NONE of the Airfield Mats were dislodged. The Anchoring system performed its duties and survived one of the worst tests nature has to offer.

Airfield Mats Anchoring System tested against V-22 Osprey Tilt-Rotor Aircraft:



Benefits of the Airfield Mat System:
• Saves Money
• Protects Airfield Lights
• Saves Labor Time
• Reduces Health Risks
• Environmentally Friendly
• Installs Quickly and Easily
• Long Lasting Durability

Saves Labor Costs. Countless man-hours are accrued during the tedious task of line-trimming airfield lights to ensure visibility. With the, mowing equipment can overlap the mat the Airfield Mat System, eliminating the need for grass trimming, thus saving Time, Money, and Labor.

Prevents Health and Safety Hazards. The light saver system eliminates the need to spread toxic chemicals, reducing the time a ground crew will need to be performing hazardous tasks in potentially dangerous locations.

Prevents Costly Equipment Breakage. During routine grounds maintenance using large and imprecise mowing equipment, crews often report broken lights and posts. Using the Airfield Mat allows the mower to cruise past each light with a wider contingency space.

Environmentally Friendly. Some airports use weed and grass-killers to control growth around airfield lights. The Airfield Mat eliminates the use of such chemicals, protecting ground water and wildlife and eliminating airfield crew exposure.

Wise Planning. Some types of chemicals used for vegetation control around runway lights may be restricted by the EPA in the near future. Airfield Mats’ System is a step towards being prepared for any such restrictions.

Long Lasting. Ground Anchors are hardened steel while the Airfield Mats are made from a durable synthetic rubber compounds. Both materials have proven resistance to nature’s elements. The Airfield Mat System can be installed and forgotten, while the benefits continue year after year, decade after decade. 20+ years and going. 

Quick and Easy Installation. Airfield Mats are secured to the earth with Airfield Mat Systems recessed Ground Anchoring System. The anchors can be quickly and easily installed by one person either by hand, a ratchet, or with a cordless drill. These durable anchors will hold the mat securely even in the most adverse weather conditions, and prevent displacement from prop-wash or jet-blast.


*All prices approximate.  See our pricing page for more exact pricing.