In an effort to allow to increase the number of aircraft and airport operations while mitigating their negative impacts (e.g., noise and pollutant emission) on near-airport communities, the optimal design of new departure routes with less noise and fuel consumption becomes more important. In this paper, a multi-objective evolutionary algorithm based on decomposition (MOEA/D), which recently emerged as a potential method for solving multi-objective optimization problems (MOPs), is developed for this kind of problem. First, to minimize aircraft noise for departure routes while taking into account the interests of various stakeholders, bi-objective optimization problems involving noise and fuel consumption are formulated where both the ground track and vertical profile of a departure route are optimized simultaneously. Second, in order to make the design space of vertical profiles feasible during the optimization process, a trajectory parameterization technique recently proposed is employed. Furthermore, some modifications to MOEA/D that are aimed at significantly reducing the computational cost are also introduced. Two different examples of departure routes at Schiphol Airport in the Netherlands are shown to demonstrate the applicability and reliability of the proposed method. The simulation results reveal that the proposed method is an effective and efficient approach for solving this kind of problem.
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