Topical Collection "Air Transportation—Operations and Management"

A topical collection in Aerospace (ISSN 2226-4310). This collection belongs to the section "Air Traffic and Transportation".

Editors

Prof. Dr. Michael Schultz
E-Mail Website1 Website2
Collection Editor
Institute of Flight Systems, Bundeswehr University Munich, 85577 Neubiberg, Germany
Interests: air transportation; data-driven and model-based environments; predictive analysis; integrated airspace and airport management
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Dr. Judith Rosenow
E-Mail Website
Collection Editor
Institute of Logistics and Aviation, Technische Universität Dresden, 01062 Dresden, Germany
Interests: contrails; ATM; air traffic; trajectory optimization; flight performance
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Topical Collection Information

Dear Colleagues,

Future air traffic demand requires air traffic providers, operators, and researchers, implementing new procedures and technologies to handle the dense air traffic network. The bottlenecks in capacity, which are already partly present, challenge air traffic control on landside, ground, and airside. The economic pressure further forces air traffic stakeholders to sustainably increase the transport efficiency considering upcoming societal and environmental issues without a deterioration of the safety level. Inefficiencies indicating a high improvement potential have been identified in the time-based operations of aircraft, of interdependencies aircraft and passenger trajectories, economic and ecology impact of air traffic, network operations and handling of uncertainties, disturbances, and disruptions in the aviation system. Current approaches will provide solutions, such as resilient air transport network management, green airport taxi procedures, optimal control of scarce resources (e.g., slots, runway or apron capacity, fleet allocation), and mitigation of impact of severe weather conditions. Focusing aircraft operations, new optimization algorithms deal with time based trajectory management considering conflicting goals of increased efficiency and environmental awareness, noise abatement strategies, efficient air space design and increased target levels of safety. This collection invites papers that present solutions for the areas of air traffic operations and economics. Of interest are papers that address solutions to deal with challenges of all air traffic stakeholders. In particular, the collection wants to focus on dynamic airspace management, flight centered operations, turnaround management, air transport performance (e.g., new metrics, inter-airport coordination), trajectory management, eco-efficient aircraft operations (e.g., formation flight, contrail avoidance), airport management (e.g., integrated approaches, pre-tactical planning), delay mitigation in the transport network, and holistic optimization approaches. Innovative solutions are being sought to enable versatile investigations of the air transport domain and provide multi-disciplinary approaches.

Dr. Michael Schultz
Dr. Judith Rosenow
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • aviation
  • transportation
  • airport
  • air space
  • traffic management
  • operations

Published Papers (48 papers)

2022

Jump to: 2021, 2020, 2019, 2018, 2017

Article
Aircraft Autonomous Separation Assurance Based on Cooperative Game Theory
Aerospace 2022, 9(8), 421; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace9080421 - 02 Aug 2022
Viewed by 257
Abstract
Transferring part of the separation assurance responsibilities from air traffic controllers to pilots during en route phases of flight can reduce the controllers’ workload while ensuring operational safety and improving operational efficiency in the airspace. For this new generation of distributed air traffic [...] Read more.
Transferring part of the separation assurance responsibilities from air traffic controllers to pilots during en route phases of flight can reduce the controllers’ workload while ensuring operational safety and improving operational efficiency in the airspace. For this new generation of distributed air traffic management mode, firstly use the conflict detection algorithm to determine whether a potential conflict exists between two aircraft, introduce cooperative game theory to autonomous separation assurance model for horizontal cross-conflict in a static wind field by forming a coalition of all aircraft involved in the potential conflict. The convex combination of minimum yaw angle and maneuver flight time is used as the strategic gain of the aircraft, and the welfare function of the coalition is maximized by changing the behavioral strategy of the aircraft. Finally, a horizontal cross-conflict scenario is set up for simulation experiments and compared with a centralized separation assurance strategy. The simulation results show the effectiveness of cooperative game theory, which is applied in distributed autonomous separation assurance. Full article
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Article
A Queuing Network Model of a Multi-Airport System Based on Point-Wise Stationary Approximation
Aerospace 2022, 9(7), 390; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace9070390 - 19 Jul 2022
Viewed by 260
Abstract
A multiple-airport system (MAS) consists of more than two airports in a metropolitan area under a large block of terminal airspace that is managed by one or two air traffic control units. When the capacity of an airport or of the terminal airspace [...] Read more.
A multiple-airport system (MAS) consists of more than two airports in a metropolitan area under a large block of terminal airspace that is managed by one or two air traffic control units. When the capacity of an airport or of the terminal airspace drops, flight delays occur in the MAS system. A quick estimation and predication of traffic congestion in the MAS is important yet challenging. This paper aims to develop a queuing network model of MAS using point-wise stationary queues. The model analyzes the changes of non-stationary queues under the principle of flow conservation to capture flight delay propagation in the system. Regression analyses are performed to examine the relationship between the arrival and departure efficiencies of different airports. The model is validated with the data of Guangdong–Hong Kong–Macao Greater Bay Area airports. Simulation results show that the model can effectively estimate flight delays in the MAS. Full article
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Article
OpenAP.top: Open Flight Trajectory Optimization for Air Transport and Sustainability Research
Aerospace 2022, 9(7), 383; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace9070383 - 15 Jul 2022
Viewed by 373
Abstract
Trajectory optimization has been an active area of research for air transport studies for several decades. But almost all flight optimizers proposed in the literature remain close-sourced, which presents a major disadvantage for the advancement of scientific research. This optimization depends on aircraft [...] Read more.
Trajectory optimization has been an active area of research for air transport studies for several decades. But almost all flight optimizers proposed in the literature remain close-sourced, which presents a major disadvantage for the advancement of scientific research. This optimization depends on aircraft performance models, emission models, and operational constraints. In this paper, I present a fully open trajectory optimizer, OpenAP.top, which offers researchers easy access to the complex but efficient non-linear optimal control approach. Full flights can be generated without specifying flight phases, and specific flight segments can also be independently created. The optimizer adapts to meteorological conditions and includes conventional fuel and cost index objectives. Based on global warming and temperature potentials, its climate objectives form the basis for climate optimal air transport studies. The optimizer’s performance and uncertainties under different factors like varying mass, cost index, and wind conditions are analyzed. Overall, this new optimizer brings a high performance for optimal trajectory generations by providing four-dimensional and wind-enabled full-phase optimal trajectories in a few seconds. Full article
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Article
Quantifying the Resilience Performance of Airport Flight Operation to Severe Weather
Aerospace 2022, 9(7), 344; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace9070344 - 27 Jun 2022
Viewed by 377
Abstract
The increased number of severe weather events caused by global warming in recent years is a major turbulence factor for airport operation and results in more irregular flights. Quantifying the system response status towards turbulence is critical, in order for airports to deal [...] Read more.
The increased number of severe weather events caused by global warming in recent years is a major turbulence factor for airport operation and results in more irregular flights. Quantifying the system response status towards turbulence is critical, in order for airports to deal with severe weather. For this reason, we propose a resilience framework that is in compliance with resilience theory to evaluate airport flight operations. In this framework, the departure rate (DPR), normal weather baseline (NWB), and nonnegative general resilience (NGR) were defined and used. Meanwhile, the whole process is divided into five phases before and after disturbance, and the system capacities of susceptibility, absorption, adaptation, and recovery are assessed. In order to clarify the performance of the framework towards various severe weather conditions, an analysis was conducted at Beijing Capital Airport in China based on a dataset that includes both the meteorological terminal aviation weather report (METAR) and flight operations from January to July 2021. The results show that the newly proposed resilience framework can commendably reflect airport flight operation performance. The airport flight operation resilience characteristic is different with severe weather. Compared to sandstorms and snow, airport flight operation with stronger robustness was observed during thunderstorm events. The study also confirms that, as the weather warning level increases, the disruption time increases and response time decreases accordingly. The above results could assist researchers and policy makers in clearly understanding the real-world resilience of airport flight operation, in both theory and practice, and responding to emergent disruptive events effectively. Full article
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Article
Flight Anomaly Detection via a Deep Hybrid Model
Aerospace 2022, 9(6), 329; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace9060329 - 19 Jun 2022
Viewed by 468
Abstract
In the civil aviation industry, security risk management has shifted from post-accident investigations and analyses to pre-accident warnings in an attempt to reduce flight risks by identifying currently untracked flight events and their trends and effectively preventing risks before they occur. The use [...] Read more.
In the civil aviation industry, security risk management has shifted from post-accident investigations and analyses to pre-accident warnings in an attempt to reduce flight risks by identifying currently untracked flight events and their trends and effectively preventing risks before they occur. The use of flight monitoring data for flight anomaly detection is effective in discovering unknown and potential flight incidents. In this paper, we propose a time-feature attention mechanism and construct a deep hybrid model for flight anomaly detection. The hybrid model combines a time-feature attention-based convolutional autoencoder with the HDBSCAN clustering algorithm, where the autoencoder is constructed and trained to extract flight features while the HDBSCAN works as an anomaly detector. Quick access record (QAR) flight data containing information of aircraft landing at Kunming Changshui International and Chengdu Shuangliu International airports are used as the experimental data, and the results show that (1) the time-feature-based convolutional autoencoder proposed in this paper can better extract the flight features and further discover the different landing patterns; (2) in the representation space of the flights, anomalous flight objects are better separated from normal objects to provide a quality database for subsequent anomaly detection; and (3) the discovered flight patterns are consistent with those at the airports, resulting in anomalies that could be interpreted with the corresponding pattern. Moreover, several examples of anomalous flights at each airport are presented to analyze the characteristics of anomalies. Full article
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Article
Effects on Taxiing Conflicts at Intersections by Pilots’ Sensitive Speed Adjustment
Aerospace 2022, 9(6), 288; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace9060288 - 25 May 2022
Viewed by 557
Abstract
The pilot is the main person in charge of taxiing safety while moving on the airport surface. The visual separation and speed adjustment are directly related to safety and efficiency of airport surface operation. According to the actual taxiing procedures and airport control [...] Read more.
The pilot is the main person in charge of taxiing safety while moving on the airport surface. The visual separation and speed adjustment are directly related to safety and efficiency of airport surface operation. According to the actual taxiing procedures and airport control rules in China, this paper proposes a novel microscopic simulation model based on the pilots’ visual separation. This model is also built by refining the aircraft taxiing procedures at intersections. The observation range, the separation judgment, pilots’ visual distance, rate of proximity and the intention for speed governing are discussed as parameters in the model. The rules for aircraft separation judgment, pilots’ autonomous speed governing, and position updates are also set up and discussed. The proposed simulation can accurately simulate the acceleration and deceleration intentions under different motion trends while reproducing the motion process including the following acceleration, following deceleration and delayed deceleration caused by separation changes. The results demonstrate that the number of conflicts can be reduced to 50% based on visual separation adjustment of 50 s when the convergence angle is 30°. The pilot’s visual distance is inversely proportional to the fluctuation range of the speed of the rear aircraft, the proximity rate of the front and rear aircraft and the probability of conflict. The simulation results of this model conform to the actual taxiing routes and control rules, which provides technical support for improving the safety level of airport surface operation and presents certain reference value and practicability. Full article
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Article
Improvement of Airport Surface Operation at Tokyo International Airport Using Optimization Approach
Aerospace 2022, 9(3), 145; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace9030145 - 07 Mar 2022
Viewed by 1057
Abstract
Congestion and delays occur on airport surfaces as a result of a rapid increase in the demand for air transport. The aim of this study is to determine the differences between optimized and observed operations to improve airport surface operation at Tokyo International [...] Read more.
Congestion and delays occur on airport surfaces as a result of a rapid increase in the demand for air transport. The aim of this study is to determine the differences between optimized and observed operations to improve airport surface operation at Tokyo International Airport by using mixed-integer linear programming to minimize the total ground movement distance and time based on real-time flight information. Receding horizon schemes are considered to adapt to dynamic environments. The model obtains results that reduce the taxi distance by 18.54% and taxi time by 29.77% compared with the observed data. A comparison of taxiway usage patterns between the optimization results and observed data provides insight into the optimization process, for example, changes in runway cross strategies and taxiway direction rules. Factors such as the objective function weights and airline–terminal relationship were found to significantly affect the optimization result. This study suggests improvements that can be made at airports to achieve a more efficient surface operation. Full article
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Article
Investigation of Merge Assist Policies to Improve Safety of Drone Traffic in a Constrained Urban Airspace
Aerospace 2022, 9(3), 120; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace9030120 - 25 Feb 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 677
Abstract
Package delivery via autonomous drones is often presumed to hold commercial and societal value when applied to urban environments. However, to realise the benefits, the challenge of safely managing high traffic densities of drones in heavily constrained urban spaces needs to be addressed. [...] Read more.
Package delivery via autonomous drones is often presumed to hold commercial and societal value when applied to urban environments. However, to realise the benefits, the challenge of safely managing high traffic densities of drones in heavily constrained urban spaces needs to be addressed. This paper applies the principles of traffic segmentation and alignment to a constrained airspace in efforts to mitigate the probability of conflict. The study proposes an en-route airspace concept in which drone flights are directly guided along a one-way street network. This one-way airspace concept uses heading-altitude rules to vertically segment cruising traffic as well as transitioning flights with respect to their travel direction. However, transition flights trigger a substantial number of merging conflicts, thus negating a large part of the benefits gained from airspace structuring. In this paper, we aim to reduce the occurrence of merging conflicts and intrusions by using a delay-based and speed-based merge-assist strategy, both well-established methods from road traffic research. We apply these merge assistance strategies to the one-way airspace design and perform simulations for three traffic densities for the experiment area of Manhattan, New York. The results indicate, at most, a 9–16% decrease in total number of intrusions with the use of merge assistance. By investigating mesoscopic features of the urban street network, the data suggest that the relatively low efficacy of the merge strategies is mainly caused by insufficient space for safe manoeuvrability and the inability for the strategies to fully respond and thus resolve conflicts on short-distance streets. Full article
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Article
Modeling Aircraft Departure at a Runway Using a Time-Varying Fluid Queue
Aerospace 2022, 9(3), 119; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace9030119 - 25 Feb 2022
Viewed by 686
Abstract
Reducing the length of departure queues at runway entry points is one of the most important requirements for reducing aircraft traffic congestion and fuel consumption at airports. This study designs an aircraft departure model at a runway using a time-varying fluid queue. The [...] Read more.
Reducing the length of departure queues at runway entry points is one of the most important requirements for reducing aircraft traffic congestion and fuel consumption at airports. This study designs an aircraft departure model at a runway using a time-varying fluid queue. The proposed model enables us to determine the aircraft waiting time in the departure queue and to evaluate effective control approaches for assigning suitable holds at gates rather than runway entry points. As a case study, this study modeled the departure queue at runway 05 of Tokyo International Airport for an entire day of operations. Using actual traffic data of departures at the airport, the model estimates that aircraft spend a total of 2.5 h departure waiting time in a day at runway 05. Considering the stochastic nature of actual departure traffic, the relevance of the proposed model is discussed using validation criteria. The model estimation shows a reasonable, expected order of magnitude compared with the departure queue recorded in the actual traffic data. Furthermore, ecological and economic benefits are quantitatively evaluated assuming a reduction in the departure queue length. Our results show that about one kiloton of fuel oil per year is wasted due to aircraft waiting to depart from a single departure runway. Full article
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Article
Factors Impacting Chinese and European Vertical Fight Efficiency
Aerospace 2022, 9(2), 76; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace9020076 - 01 Feb 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 574
Abstract
Increasing complexity due to a constantly growing number of target functions turns air traffic trajectory optimization into a multidimensional and nonlinear task that in turn necessitates a focus on the case-sensitive most important criteria. The criteria vary by continent and involve operational, economic, [...] Read more.
Increasing complexity due to a constantly growing number of target functions turns air traffic trajectory optimization into a multidimensional and nonlinear task that in turn necessitates a focus on the case-sensitive most important criteria. The criteria vary by continent and involve operational, economic, environmental, political, and social concerns. Furthermore, the requirements may alter for a single flight along its journey since air traffic is a transcontinental, segment-wise differently affected transportation mode. Tracked flight data allow for the observation and evaluation of large numbers of flights, as well as the extraction of criteria relevant to flight efficiency and to derive optimization strategies to improve it. In this study, flight track data of China and Europe were compared toward flight efficiency. We found major disparities in both continents’ routing structures. Historical ADS-B data considered to be reference trajectories were assessed for flight efficiency while putting a dedicated focus on the vertical profile. Criteria to optimize vertical flight efficiency (VFE) were derived. Based on the findings, suggestions for improvement towards trajectories with minimum fuel are formulated. Different optimization strategies were tested to identify important input variables and, if possible, to determine differences between operation in China and in Europe. On average and in both regions, the influence of weather (e.g., wind speed and wind direction) exceeds the influence of aerodynamics (aircraft type, mass), as the weather-optimized vertical profile more often results in minimum fuel consumption than the aerodynamically optimized trajectory. Atmospheric conditions, network requirements, aircraft types and flight planning procedures are similar in China and Europe and only have a minor impact on flight efficiency during the cruise phase. In a multi-criteria trajectory optimization of the extracted reference trajectories considering the weather, operational constraints and prohibited areas, we found that in China, on average, just under 13% fuel could be saved through optimal vertical and horizontal routing. In Europe, the figure is a good 10%. Furthermore, we calculated a fuel-saving potential of 8% in China and 3% in Europe through vertical adjustments of the trajectory alone. The resultant reference trajectories will be used for further analysis to increase the efficiency of continental air traffic flows. Full article
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Technical Note
Correlated Bayesian Model of Aircraft Encounters in the Terminal Area Given a Straight Takeoff or Landing
Aerospace 2022, 9(2), 58; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace9020058 - 24 Jan 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 957
Abstract
The integration of new airspace entrants into terminal operations requires design and evaluation of Detect and Avoid systems that prevent loss of well clear from and collision with other aircraft. Prior to standardization or deployment, an analysis of the safety performance of those [...] Read more.
The integration of new airspace entrants into terminal operations requires design and evaluation of Detect and Avoid systems that prevent loss of well clear from and collision with other aircraft. Prior to standardization or deployment, an analysis of the safety performance of those systems is required. This type of analysis has typically been conducted by Monte Carlo simulation with synthetic, statistically representative encounters between aircraft drawn from an appropriate encounter model. While existing encounter models include terminal airspace classes, none explicitly represents the structure expected while engaged in terminal operations, e.g., aircraft in a traffic pattern. The work described herein is an initial model of such operations where an aircraft landing or taking off via a straight trajectory encounters another aircraft landing or taking off, or transiting by any means. The model shares the Bayesian network foundation of other Massachusetts Institute of Technology Lincoln Laboratory encounter models but tailors those networks to address structured terminal operations, i.e., correlations between trajectories and the airfield and each other. This initial model release is intended to elicit feedback from the standards-writing community. Full article
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Article
Travel Bubbles in Air Transportation: Myth or Reality?
Aerospace 2022, 9(1), 38; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace9010038 - 13 Jan 2022
Viewed by 555
Abstract
Aviation has been hit hard by COVID-19, with passengers stranded in remote destinations, airlines filing for bankruptcy, and uncertain demand scenarios for the future. Travel bubbles are discussed as one possible solution, meaning countries which have successfully constrained the spread of COVID-19 gradually [...] Read more.
Aviation has been hit hard by COVID-19, with passengers stranded in remote destinations, airlines filing for bankruptcy, and uncertain demand scenarios for the future. Travel bubbles are discussed as one possible solution, meaning countries which have successfully constrained the spread of COVID-19 gradually increase their mutual international flights, returning to a degree of normality. This study aims to answer the question of whether travel bubbles are indeed observable in flight data for the year 2020. We take the year 2019 as reference and then search for anomalies in countries’ flight bans and recoveries, which could possibly be explained by having successfully implemented a travel bubble. To the best of our knowledge, this study is the first to try to address the identification of COVID-19 travel bubbles in real data. Our methodology and findings lead to several important insights regarding policy making, problems associated with the concept of travel bubbles, and raise interesting avenues for future research. Full article
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2021

Jump to: 2022, 2020, 2019, 2018, 2017

Article
A System Dynamics Prediction Model of Airport Environmental Carrying Capacity: Airport Development Mode Planning and Case Study
Aerospace 2021, 8(12), 397; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace8120397 - 14 Dec 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 787
Abstract
Airport environmental carrying capacity (AECC) provides the fundamental conditions for airport development and operation activities. The prediction of AECC is a necessary condition for planning an appropriate development mode for the airport. This paper studies the dynamic prediction method of the AECC to [...] Read more.
Airport environmental carrying capacity (AECC) provides the fundamental conditions for airport development and operation activities. The prediction of AECC is a necessary condition for planning an appropriate development mode for the airport. This paper studies the dynamic prediction method of the AECC to explore the development characteristics of AECC in different airports. Based on the driving force-pressure-state-response (DPSR) framework, the method selects 17 main variables from economic, social, environmental and operational dimensions, and then combines the drawing of causal loop diagrams and the establishment of system flow diagrams to construct the system dynamics (SD) model of AECC. The predicted values of AECC are obtained through SD model simulation and accelerated genetic algorithm projection pursuit (AGA-PP) model calculation. Considering sustainable development needs, different scenarios are set to analyze the appropriate development mode of the airport. The case study of the Pearl River Delta airports resulted in two main conclusions. First, in the same economic zone, different airports with similar aircraft movements have similar development characteristics of AECC. Second, the appropriate development modes for different airports are different, and the appropriate development modes for the airport in different periods are also different. The case study also proves that the AECC prediction based on SD model and AGA-PP model can realize short-term policy formulation and long-term planning for the airport development mode, and provide decision-making support for relevant departments of airport. Full article
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Article
Spatiotemporal Graph Indicators for Air Traffic Complexity Analysis
Aerospace 2021, 8(12), 364; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace8120364 - 25 Nov 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 745
Abstract
There has been extensive research in formalising air traffic complexity, but existing works focus mainly on a metric to tie down the peak air traffic controllers workload rather than a dynamic approach to complexity that could guide both strategical, pre-tactical and tactical actions [...] Read more.
There has been extensive research in formalising air traffic complexity, but existing works focus mainly on a metric to tie down the peak air traffic controllers workload rather than a dynamic approach to complexity that could guide both strategical, pre-tactical and tactical actions for a smooth flow of aircraft. In this paper, aircraft interdependencies are formalized using graph theory and four complexity indicators are described, which combine spatiotemporal topological information with the severity of the interdependencies. These indicators can be used to predict the dynamic evolution of complexity, by not giving one single score, but measuring complexity in a time window. Results show that these indicators can capture complex spatiotemporal areas in a sector and give a detailed and nuanced view of sector complexity. Full article
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Article
Impact of Chinese and European Airspace Constraints on Trajectory Optimization
Aerospace 2021, 8(11), 338; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace8110338 - 10 Nov 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 648
Abstract
Air traffic trajectory optimization is a complex, multidimensional and non-linear optimization problem and requires a firm focus on the essential criteria. The criteria cover operational, economical, environmental, political, and social factors and differ from continent to continent. Since air traffic is a transcontinental [...] Read more.
Air traffic trajectory optimization is a complex, multidimensional and non-linear optimization problem and requires a firm focus on the essential criteria. The criteria cover operational, economical, environmental, political, and social factors and differ from continent to continent. Since air traffic is a transcontinental transport system, the criteria may also change during a single flight. Historic flight track data allow observation and assess real flights, to extract essential criteria and to derive optimization strategies to increase air traffic efficiency. Real flight track data from the Chinese and European air traffic show significant differences in the routing structure in both regions. For that reason, reference trajectories of historic ADS-B 24-h air traffic data in China and Europe have been extracted and analyzed regarding horizontal flight efficiency and the most restrictive criteria of trajectory optimization. We found that prohibited areas might be the most powerful reason to describe deviations from the great circle distance in the Chinese air traffic system. Atmospheric conditions, network requirements, aircraft types and flight planning procedures are similar in China and Europe and only have a minor impact on flight efficiency during the cruise phase. In a multi-criteria trajectory optimization of the extracted reference trajectories considering the weather, operational constraints and prohibited areas, we found that flown ground distances could be reduced by 255 km in the Chinese airspace and 2.3 km in the European airspace. The resultant reference trajectories can be used for further analysis to increase the efficiency of continental air traffic flows. Full article
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Article
Aircraft Trajectory Clustering in Terminal Airspace Based on Deep Autoencoder and Gaussian Mixture Model
Aerospace 2021, 8(9), 266; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace8090266 - 16 Sep 2021
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 955
Abstract
The aircraft trajectory clustering analysis in the terminal airspace is conducive to determining the representative route structure of the arrival and departure trajectory and extracting their typical patterns, which is important for air traffic management such as airspace structure optimization, trajectory planning, and [...] Read more.
The aircraft trajectory clustering analysis in the terminal airspace is conducive to determining the representative route structure of the arrival and departure trajectory and extracting their typical patterns, which is important for air traffic management such as airspace structure optimization, trajectory planning, and trajectory prediction. However, the current clustering methods perform poorly due to the large flight traffic, high density, and complex airspace structure in the terminal airspace. In recent years, the continuous development of Deep Learning has demonstrated its powerful ability to extract internal potential features of large dataset. Therefore, this paper mainly tries a deep trajectory clustering method based on deep autoencoder (DAE). To this end, this paper proposes a trajectory clustering method based on deep autoencoder (DAE) and Gaussian mixture model (GMM) to mine the prevailing traffic flow patterns in the terminal airspace. The DAE is trained to extract feature representations from historical high-dimensional trajectory data. Subsequently, the output of DAE is input into GMM for clustering. This paper takes the terminal airspace of Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport in China as a case to verify the proposed method. Through the direct visualization and dimensionality reduction visualization of the clustering results, it is found that the traffic flow patterns identified by the clustering method in this paper are intuitive and separable. Full article
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Article
The Impact of Automation on Air Traffic Controller’s Behaviors
Aerospace 2021, 8(9), 260; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace8090260 - 13 Sep 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 860
Abstract
Air traffic controllers have to make quick decisions to keep air traffic safe. Their behaviors have a significant impact on the operation of the air traffic management (ATM) system. Automation tools have enhanced the ATM system’s capability by reducing the controller’s task-load. Much [...] Read more.
Air traffic controllers have to make quick decisions to keep air traffic safe. Their behaviors have a significant impact on the operation of the air traffic management (ATM) system. Automation tools have enhanced the ATM system’s capability by reducing the controller’s task-load. Much attention has been devoted to developing advanced automation in the last decade. However, less is known about the impact of automation on the behaviors of air traffic controllers. Here, we empirically tested the effects of three levels of automation—including manual, attention-guided, and automated—as well as varying traffic levels on eye movements, situation awareness and mental workload. The results showed that there are significant differences in the gaze and saccade behaviors between the attention-guided group and automated group. Traffic affected eye movements under the manual mode or under the attention-guided mode, but had no effect on eye movements under the automated mode. The results also supported the use of automation for enhancing situation awareness while reducing mental workload. Our work has potential implications for the design of automation and operation procedures. Full article
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Article
A Holistic Approach for Optimal Pre-Planning of Multi-Path Standardized Taxiing Routes
Aerospace 2021, 8(9), 241; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace8090241 - 01 Sep 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 814
Abstract
Standardized Taxiing Routes (STRs) are defined as published taxiing-in and taxiing-out routes for aircraft between gates and runways, aiming at improving ground movement safety at busy or complex airports. Most of the STRs specify only one path between each O–D (Origin–Destination) pair, which [...] Read more.
Standardized Taxiing Routes (STRs) are defined as published taxiing-in and taxiing-out routes for aircraft between gates and runways, aiming at improving ground movement safety at busy or complex airports. Most of the STRs specify only one path between each O–D (Origin–Destination) pair, which compromises the flexibility of route choice in time-varying traffic scenarios. In this paper, we present a holistic approach of planning and validating Multi-Path Standardized Taxiing Routes (MPSTRs) based on System-Optimal Traffic Assignment (SOTA), by firstly defining the flow-based congestion cost of runway, taxiway, and sectorized apron operation at a macroscopic level. A human-in-the-loop experiment comprised of six operation scenarios follows to investigate the impact of the pre-planned MPSTRs on human controllers’ performance. Results confirm the positive effect of the MPSTRs on taxiing performance without increasing the controllers’ workload, which also implies that the MPSTRs would be a promising approach for balancing safety and efficiency for the STRs-based taxiing operation and dynamic routing optimization without substantial investment. Full article
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Article
Explanation of Machine-Learning Solutions in Air-Traffic Management
Aerospace 2021, 8(8), 224; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace8080224 - 12 Aug 2021
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 1474
Abstract
Advances in the trusted autonomy of air-traffic management (ATM) systems are currently being pursued to cope with the predicted growth in air-traffic densities in all classes of airspace. Highly automated ATM systems relying on artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms for anomaly detection, pattern identification, [...] Read more.
Advances in the trusted autonomy of air-traffic management (ATM) systems are currently being pursued to cope with the predicted growth in air-traffic densities in all classes of airspace. Highly automated ATM systems relying on artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms for anomaly detection, pattern identification, accurate inference, and optimal conflict resolution are technically feasible and demonstrably able to take on a wide variety of tasks currently accomplished by humans. However, the opaqueness and inexplicability of most intelligent algorithms restrict the usability of such technology. Consequently, AI-based ATM decision-support systems (DSS) are foreseen to integrate eXplainable AI (XAI) in order to increase interpretability and transparency of the system reasoning and, consequently, build the human operators’ trust in these systems. This research presents a viable solution to implement XAI in ATM DSS, providing explanations that can be appraised and analysed by the human air-traffic control operator (ATCO). The maturity of XAI approaches and their application in ATM operational risk prediction is investigated in this paper, which can support both existing ATM advisory services in uncontrolled airspace (Classes E and F) and also drive the inflation of avoidance volumes in emerging performance-driven autonomy concepts. In particular, aviation occurrences and meteorological databases are exploited to train a machine learning (ML)-based risk-prediction tool capable of real-time situation analysis and operational risk monitoring. The proposed approach is based on the XGBoost library, which is a gradient-boost decision tree algorithm for which post-hoc explanations are produced by SHapley Additive exPlanations (SHAP) and Local Interpretable Model-Agnostic Explanations (LIME). Results are presented and discussed, and considerations are made on the most promising strategies for evolving the human–machine interactions (HMI) to strengthen the mutual trust between ATCO and systems. The presented approach is not limited only to conventional applications but also suitable for UAS-traffic management (UTM) and other emerging applications. Full article
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Article
Data-Driven Simulation for Evaluating the Impact of Lower Arrival Aircraft Separation on Available Airspace and Runway Capacity at Tokyo International Airport
Aerospace 2021, 8(6), 165; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace8060165 - 13 Jun 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1530
Abstract
Although the application of new wake turbulence categories, the so-called “RECAT (wake turbulence category re-categorization)”, will realize lower aircraft separation minima and directly increase runway throughput, the impacts of increasing arrival traffic on the surrounding airspace and arrival traffic flow as a whole [...] Read more.
Although the application of new wake turbulence categories, the so-called “RECAT (wake turbulence category re-categorization)”, will realize lower aircraft separation minima and directly increase runway throughput, the impacts of increasing arrival traffic on the surrounding airspace and arrival traffic flow as a whole have not yet been discussed. This paper proposes a data-driven simulation approach and evaluates the effectiveness of the lower aircraft separation in the arrival traffic at the target airport. The maximum runway capacity was clarified using statistics on aircraft types, stochastic distributions of inter-aircraft time and runway occupancy time, and the levels of the automation systems that supported air traffic controllers’ separation work. Based on the estimated available runway capacity, simulation models were proposed by analyzing actual radar track and flight plan data during the 6 months between September 2019 and February 2020, under actual operational constraints and weather conditions. The simulation results showed that the application of RECAT would reduce vectoring time in the terminal area by 7% to 10% under the current airspace and runway capacity when following a first-come first-served arrival sequence. In addition, increasing airspace capacity by 10% in the terminal area could dramatically reduce en-route and takeoff delay times while keeping vectoring time the same as under the current operation in the terminal area. These findings clarified that applying RECAT would contribute to mitigating air traffic congestion close to the airport, and to reducing delay times in arrival traffic as a whole while increasing runway throughput. The simulation results demonstrated the relevance of the theoretical results given by queue-based approaches in the authors’ past studies. Full article
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Article
Influence of the Apron Parking Stand Management Policy on Aircraft and Ground Support Equipment (GSE) Gaseous Emissions at Airports
Aerospace 2021, 8(3), 87; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace8030087 - 19 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1011
Abstract
The purpose of this study is to analyze the concept of a hybrid apron with a fixed number of parking positions considering the management model influence for the average delay per aircraft and the gaseous emissions generated by aircraft and ground support equipment [...] Read more.
The purpose of this study is to analyze the concept of a hybrid apron with a fixed number of parking positions considering the management model influence for the average delay per aircraft and the gaseous emissions generated by aircraft and ground support equipment (GSE) altogether. The apron is studied based on two gate management models: in the first model, the aircraft are allocated in each gate due to operational factors only; in the second model, the rules of exclusive use of each gate according to the airline are included. The emissions generated by aircraft operations and that of their GSE (produced by the service and movements on the apron) are quantified and compared in the two gate management models: operation in the standard LTO cycle of the studied aircraft, GSE emissions have a similar relation with the compared gasses (NOx and CO), ranging between 1% and 3%. Further, if it compares the emissions between support vehicles and aircraft taking only into account the in-out taxiway, the relation between both CO sources shows similar values to those of the previous comparison, whereas NOx emissions produced by GSE reach an approximately 20%. The study considers different demand conditions obtained from the average day of the peak month of Aeroparque Jorge Newbery airport. Subsequently, through the SIMMOD PLUS software, the aircraft operations are simulated. The gates assignment and the arrival timetables are used as inputs for the GSE study due to an analytical model developed by us. Once the operational dimension is characterized and evaluated, the necessary data to quantify the gaseous emissions from the sources (Aircraft-GSE), based on the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) guidelines, is obtained. Full article
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Article
Analysis of Risk-Based Operational Bird Strike Prevention
Aerospace 2021, 8(2), 32; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace8020032 - 28 Jan 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1391
Abstract
Bird strike prevention in civil aviation has traditionally focused on the airport perimeter. Since the risk of especially damaging bird strikes outside the airport boundaries is rising, this paper investigates the safety potential of operational bird strike prevention involving pilots and controllers. In [...] Read more.
Bird strike prevention in civil aviation has traditionally focused on the airport perimeter. Since the risk of especially damaging bird strikes outside the airport boundaries is rising, this paper investigates the safety potential of operational bird strike prevention involving pilots and controllers. In such a concept, controllers would be equipped with a bird strike advisory system, allowing them to delay departures which are most vulnerable to the consequences of bird strikes in case of high bird strike risk. An initial study has shown the strong potential of the concept to prevent bird strikes in case of perfect bird movement prediction. This paper takes the research to the next level by taking into account the limited predictability of bird tracks. As such, the collision avoidance algorithm is extended to a bird strike risk algorithm. The risk of bird strikes is calculated for birds expected to cross the extended runway center line and to cause aircraft damage upon impact. By specifically targeting these birds and excluding birds lingering on the runway which are taken care of by the local wildlife control, capacity reductions should be limited, and the implementation remain feasible. The extrapolation of bird tracks is performed by simple linear regression based on the bird positions known at the intended take-off times. To calculate the probability of collision, uncertainties resulting from variability in bird velocity and track are included. The study demonstrates the necessity to limit alerts to potentially damaging strikes with birds crossing the extended runway center line to keep the imposed delays tolerable for airports operating at their capacity limits. It is shown that predicting bird movements based on simple linear regression without considering individual bird behavior is insufficient to achieve a safety-effect. Hence, in-depth studies of multi-year bird data to develop bird behavior models and reliable predictions are recommended for future research. This is expected to facilitate the implementation of a bird strike advisory system satisfying both safety and capacity aspects. Full article
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Article
The Efficacy of Operational Bird Strike Prevention
Aerospace 2021, 8(1), 17; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace8010017 - 14 Jan 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1470
Abstract
Involving air traffic controllers and pilots into the bird strike prevention process is considered an essential step to increase aviation and avian safety. Prior to implementing operational measures such as real-time warning systems, it is vital to evaluate their feasibility. This paper studies [...] Read more.
Involving air traffic controllers and pilots into the bird strike prevention process is considered an essential step to increase aviation and avian safety. Prior to implementing operational measures such as real-time warning systems, it is vital to evaluate their feasibility. This paper studies the efficacy of a bird strike advisory system for air traffic control. In addition to the potential safety benefit, the possible impact on airport operations is analyzed. To this end, a previously developed collision avoidance algorithm underlying the system was tested in fast-time Monte Carlo simulations involving various air traffic and bird densities to obtain representative conclusions for different operational conditions. The results demonstrate the strong safety potential of operational bird strike prevention in case of precise bird movement prediction. Unless airports operate close to their capacity limits while bird abundance is high, the induced delays remain tolerable. Prioritization of hazardous strikes involving large individuals as well as flocks of birds are expected to support operational feasibility in all conditions. Full article
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2020

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Article
Traffic Network Identification Using Trajectory Intersection Clustering
Aerospace 2020, 7(12), 175; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7120175 - 10 Dec 2020
Viewed by 1062
Abstract
The current airspace route system consists mainly of pre-defined routes with a low number of intersections to facilitate air traffic controllers to oversee the traffic. Our aim is a method to create an artificial and reliable route network based on planned or as-flown [...] Read more.
The current airspace route system consists mainly of pre-defined routes with a low number of intersections to facilitate air traffic controllers to oversee the traffic. Our aim is a method to create an artificial and reliable route network based on planned or as-flown trajectories. The application possibilities of the resulting network are manifold, reaching from the assessment of new air traffic management (ATM) strategies or historical data to a basis for simulation systems. Trajectories are defined as sequences of common points at intersections with other trajectories. All common points of a traffic sample are clustered, and, after further optimization, the cluster centers are used as nodes in the new main-flow network. To build almost-realistic flight trajectories based on this network, additional parameters such as speed and altitude are added to the nodes and the possibility to take detours into account to avoid congested areas is introduced. As optimization criteria, the trajectory length and the structural complexity of the main-flow system are used. Based on these criteria, we develop a new cost function for the optimization process. In addition, we show how different traffic situations are covered by the network. To illustrate the capabilities of our approach, traffic is exemplarily divided into separate classes and class-dependent parameters are assigned. Applied to two real traffic scenarios, the approach was able to emulate the underlying route systems with a difference in median trajectory length of 0.2%, resp. 0.5% compared to the original routes. Full article
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Article
Evaluation of Strategies to Reduce the Cost Impacts of Flight Delays on Total Network Costs
Aerospace 2020, 7(11), 165; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7110165 - 18 Nov 2020
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1679
Abstract
Competitive price pressure and economic cost pressure constantly force airlines to improve their optimization strategies. Besides predictable operational costs, delay costs are a significant cost driver for airlines. Especially reactionary delay costs can endanger the profitability of such a company. These time-dependent costs [...] Read more.
Competitive price pressure and economic cost pressure constantly force airlines to improve their optimization strategies. Besides predictable operational costs, delay costs are a significant cost driver for airlines. Especially reactionary delay costs can endanger the profitability of such a company. These time-dependent costs depend on the number of sensitive transfer passengers. This cost component is represented by the number of missed flights and the connectivity of onward flights, i.e., the offer of alternative flight connections. The airline has several options to compensate for reactionary delays, for example, by increasing cruising speeds, shortening turnaround times, rebookings and cancellations. The effects of these options on the cost balance of airline total operating costs have been examined in detail, considering a flight-specific number of transfer passengers. The results have been applied to a 24-h rotation schedule of a large German hub airport. We found, that the fast turnaround and increasing cruise speed are the most effective strategies to compensate for passenger-specific delay costs. The results could be used in a multi-criteria trajectory optimization to find a balance between environmentally-driven and cost-index-driven detours and speed adjustments. Full article
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Article
In-Flight Aircraft Trajectory Optimization within Corridors Defined by Ensemble Weather Forecasts
Aerospace 2020, 7(10), 144; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7100144 - 01 Oct 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1721
Abstract
Today, each flight is filed as a static route not later than one hour before departure. From there on, changes of the lateral route initiated by the pilot are only possible with air traffic control clearance and in the minority. Thus, the initially [...] Read more.
Today, each flight is filed as a static route not later than one hour before departure. From there on, changes of the lateral route initiated by the pilot are only possible with air traffic control clearance and in the minority. Thus, the initially optimized trajectory of the flight plan is flown, although the optimization may already be based upon outdated weather data at take-off. Global weather data as those modeled by the Global Forecast System do, however, contain hints on forecast uncertainties itself, which is quantified by considering so-called ensemble forecast data. In this study, the variability in these weather parameter uncertainties is analyzed, before the trajectory optimization model TOMATO is applied to single trajectories considering the previously quantified uncertainties. TOMATO generates, based on the set of input data as provided by the ensembles, a 3D corridor encasing all resulting optimized trajectories. Assuming that this corridor is filed in addition to the initial flight plan, the optimum trajectory can be updated even during flight, as soon as updated weather forecasts are available. In return and as a compromise, flights would have to stay within the corridor to provide planning stability for Air Traffic Management compared to full free in-flight optimization. Although the corridor restricts the re-optimized trajectory, fuel savings of up to 1.1%, compared to the initially filed flight, could be shown. Full article
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Article
OpenAP: An Open-Source Aircraft Performance Model for Air Transportation Studies and Simulations
Aerospace 2020, 7(8), 104; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7080104 - 23 Jul 2020
Cited by 15 | Viewed by 3359
Abstract
Air traffic simulations serve as common practice to evaluate different concepts and methods for air transportation studies. The aircraft performance model is a key element that supports these simulation-based studies. It is also an important component for simulation-independent studies, such as air traffic [...] Read more.
Air traffic simulations serve as common practice to evaluate different concepts and methods for air transportation studies. The aircraft performance model is a key element that supports these simulation-based studies. It is also an important component for simulation-independent studies, such as air traffic optimization and prediction studies. Commonly, contemporary studies have to rely on proprietary aircraft performance models that restrict the redistribution of the data and code. To promote openness and research comparability, an alternative open performance model would be beneficial for the air transportation research community. In this paper, we introduce an open aircraft performance model (OpenAP). It is an open-source model that is based on a number of our previous studies, which were focused on different components of the aircraft performance. The unique characteristic of OpenAP is that it was built upon open aircraft surveillance data and open literature models. The model is composed of four main components, including aircraft and engine properties, kinematic performances, dynamic performances, and utility libraries. Alongside the performance model, we are publishing an open-source toolkit to facilitate the use of this model. The main objective of this paper is to describe each main component, their connections, and how they can be used for simulation and research in practice. Finally, we analyzed the performance of OpenAP by comparing it with an existing performance model and sample flight data. Full article
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Article
Evaluation of Asphalt Concrete Airport Pavement Conditions Based on the Airfield Pavement Condition Index (APCI) in Scope of Flight Safety
Aerospace 2020, 7(6), 78; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7060078 - 15 Jun 2020
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2097
Abstract
Airoport infrastructure development requires care to maintain it in proper technical condition. Due to this, airport pavements should be constantly monitored, and, above all, correctly managed. High-level airport pavement management requires access to reliable information about their current technical condition as well as [...] Read more.
Airoport infrastructure development requires care to maintain it in proper technical condition. Due to this, airport pavements should be constantly monitored, and, above all, correctly managed. High-level airport pavement management requires access to reliable information about their current technical condition as well as proper forecasting of this condition in the future. Obtaining good quality information about the technical condition of airport pavement should be based on a proven methodology, taking into account the introduced quality management system. The authors propose a method of technical pavement condition assessment based on the Airfield Pavement Condition Index (APCI), taking into account not only the results of the surface deterioration inventory, but also repair overviews, load bearing capacity, evenness and roughness of the surface, as well as the surface tensile bond strength. The method was developed during long-term work financed by the Ministry of Science and Higher Education. At the beginning of the article, the authors focus on reviewing the currently available methods of assessing the technical condition of the pavement. Then they briefly present the most popular surface assessment method based on the PCI indicator. Afterwards, a proprietary asphalt pavement assessment method based on the APCI indicator is proposed and an example of how to use the method is presented. Finally, they discuss the results and summarize the work done, and present further directions of work. Full article
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Concept Paper
A Collaborative Approach for an Integrated Modeling of Urban Air Transportation Systems
Aerospace 2020, 7(5), 50; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7050050 - 28 Apr 2020
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 3446
Abstract
The current push in automation, communication, and electrical energy storage technologies has the potential to lift urban mobility into the sky. As several urban air mobility (UAM) concepts are conceivable, all relevant physical effects as well as mutual interrelations of the UAM system [...] Read more.
The current push in automation, communication, and electrical energy storage technologies has the potential to lift urban mobility into the sky. As several urban air mobility (UAM) concepts are conceivable, all relevant physical effects as well as mutual interrelations of the UAM system have to be addressed and evaluated at a sufficient level of fidelity before implementation. Therefore, a collaborative system of systems modeling approach for UAM is presented. To quickly identify physical effects and cross-disciplinary influences of UAM, a pool of low-fidelity physical analysis components is developed and integrated into the Remote Component Environment (RCE) workflow engine. This includes, i. a., the disciplines of demand forecast, trajectory, vertiport, and cost modeling as well as air traffic flow and capacity management. The definition and clarification of technical interfaces require intensive cooperation between specialists with different areas of expertise. To reduce this communication effort, the Common Parametric Aircraft Configuration Schema (CPACS) is adapted and used as central data exchange format. The UAM system module is initially applied for a 24-hour simulation of three generic networks in Hamburg City. After understanding the basic system-level behavior, higher level analysis components and feedback loops must be integrated in the UAM system module for evaluation and optimization of explicit operating concepts. Full article
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Review
The Bird Strike Challenge
Aerospace 2020, 7(3), 26; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7030026 - 13 Mar 2020
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 4450
Abstract
Collisions between birds and aircraft pose a severe threat to aviation and avian safety. To understand and prevent these bird strikes, knowledge about the factors leading to these bird strikes is vital. However, even though it is a global issue, data availability strongly [...] Read more.
Collisions between birds and aircraft pose a severe threat to aviation and avian safety. To understand and prevent these bird strikes, knowledge about the factors leading to these bird strikes is vital. However, even though it is a global issue, data availability strongly varies and is difficult to put into a global picture. This paper aims to close this gap by providing an in-depth review of studies and statistics to obtain a concise overview of the bird strike problem in commercial aviation on an international level. The paper illustrates the factors contributing to the occurrence and the potential consequences in terms of effect on flight and damage. This is followed by a presentation of the risk-reducing measures currently in place as well as their limitations. The paper closes with an insight into current research investigating novel methods to prevent bird strikes. Full article
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Article
Go-Around Detection Using Crowd-Sourced ADS-B Position Data
Aerospace 2020, 7(2), 16; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7020016 - 21 Feb 2020
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 3557
Abstract
The decision of a flight crew to undertake a go-around, aborting a landing attempt, is primarily to ensure the safe conduct of a flight. Although go-arounds are rare, they do cause air traffic disruption, especially in busy airspace, due to the need to [...] Read more.
The decision of a flight crew to undertake a go-around, aborting a landing attempt, is primarily to ensure the safe conduct of a flight. Although go-arounds are rare, they do cause air traffic disruption, especially in busy airspace, due to the need to accommodate an aircraft in an unusual position, and a go-around can also result in knock-on delays due to the time taken for the aircraft to re-position, fit into the landing sequence and execute a successful landing. Therefore, it is important to understand and alleviate the factors that can result in a go-around. In this paper, I present a new method for automatically detecting go-around events in aircraft position data, such as that sent via the ADS-B system, and apply the method to one year of approach data for Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport (VABB) in Mumbai, India. I show that the method is significantly more accurate than other methods, detecting go-arounds with very few false positives or negatives. Finally, I use the new method to reveal that while there is no one cause for go-arounds at this airport, the majority can be attributed to weather and/or an unstable approach. I also show that one runway (14/32) has a significantly higher proportion of go-arounds than the other (09/27). Full article
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Article
Operational Feasibility Analysis of the Multimodal Controller Working Position “TriControl”
Aerospace 2020, 7(2), 15; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7020015 - 20 Feb 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2639
Abstract
Current Air Traffic Controller working positions (CWPs) are reaching their capacity owing to increasing levels of air traffic. The multimodal CWP prototype TriControl combines automatic speech recognition, multitouch gestures, and eye-tracking, aiming for more natural and improved human interaction with air traffic control [...] Read more.
Current Air Traffic Controller working positions (CWPs) are reaching their capacity owing to increasing levels of air traffic. The multimodal CWP prototype TriControl combines automatic speech recognition, multitouch gestures, and eye-tracking, aiming for more natural and improved human interaction with air traffic control systems. However, the prototype has not yet undergone systematic evaluation with respect to feasibility. This paper evaluates the operational feasibility, focusing on the system usability of the approach CWP TriControl and its fulfillment of operational requirements. Fourteen controllers took part in a simulation study to evaluate the TriControl concept. The active approach controllers among the group of participants served as the main core target subgroup. The ratings of all controllers in the TriControl assessment were, on average, generally in slight agreement, with just a few showing statistical significance. However, the active approach controllers performed better and rated the system much more positively. The active approach controllers were strongly positive regarding the system usability and acceptance of this early-stage prototype. Particularly, ease of use, user-friendliness, and learnability were perceived very positively. Overall, they were also satisfied with the command input procedure, and would use it for their daily work. Thus, the participating controllers encourage further enhancements to be made to TriControl. Full article
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2019

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Review
Recent Advances in Anomaly Detection Methods Applied to Aviation
Aerospace 2019, 6(11), 117; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace6110117 - 30 Oct 2019
Cited by 57 | Viewed by 6143
Abstract
Anomaly detection is an active area of research with numerous methods and applications. This survey reviews the state-of-the-art of data-driven anomaly detection techniques and their application to the aviation domain. After a brief introduction to the main traditional data-driven methods for anomaly detection, [...] Read more.
Anomaly detection is an active area of research with numerous methods and applications. This survey reviews the state-of-the-art of data-driven anomaly detection techniques and their application to the aviation domain. After a brief introduction to the main traditional data-driven methods for anomaly detection, we review the recent advances in the area of neural networks, deep learning and temporal-logic based learning. In particular, we cover unsupervised techniques applicable to time series data because of their relevance to the aviation domain, where the lack of labeled data is the most usual case, and the nature of flight trajectories and sensor data is sequential, or temporal. The advantages and disadvantages of each method are presented in terms of computational efficiency and detection efficacy. The second part of the survey explores the application of anomaly detection techniques to aviation and their contributions to the improvement of the safety and performance of flight operations and aviation systems. As far as we know, some of the presented methods have not yet found an application in the aviation domain. We review applications ranging from the identification of significant operational events in air traffic operations to the prediction of potential aviation system failures for predictive maintenance. Full article
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Article
Queue-Based Modeling of the Aircraft Arrival Process at a Single Airport
Aerospace 2019, 6(10), 103; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace6100103 - 20 Sep 2019
Cited by 14 | Viewed by 4491
Abstract
This paper proposes data-driven queuing models and solutions to reduce arrival time delays originating from aircraft arrival processing bottlenecks at Tokyo International Airport. A data-driven analysis was conducted using two years of radar tracks and flight plans from 2016 and 2017. This analysis [...] Read more.
This paper proposes data-driven queuing models and solutions to reduce arrival time delays originating from aircraft arrival processing bottlenecks at Tokyo International Airport. A data-driven analysis was conducted using two years of radar tracks and flight plans from 2016 and 2017. This analysis helps not only to understand the bottlenecks and operational strategies of air traffic controllers, but also to develop mathematical models to predict arrival delays resulting from increased, future aircraft traffic. The queue-based modeling approach suggests that one potential solution is to expand the realization of time-based operations, efficiently shifting from traffic flow control to time-based arrival management. Furthermore, the proposed approach estimates the most effective range of transition points, which is a key requirement for designing extended arrival management systems while offering automation support to air traffic controllers. Full article
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Article
Interdependent Uncertainty Handling in Trajectory Prediction
Aerospace 2019, 6(2), 15; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace6020015 - 12 Feb 2019
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 3383
Abstract
The concept of 4D trajectory management relies on the prediction of aircraft trajectories in time and space. Due to changes in atmospheric conditions and complexity of the air traffic itself, the reliable prediction of system states is an ongoing challenge. The emerging uncertainties [...] Read more.
The concept of 4D trajectory management relies on the prediction of aircraft trajectories in time and space. Due to changes in atmospheric conditions and complexity of the air traffic itself, the reliable prediction of system states is an ongoing challenge. The emerging uncertainties have to be modeled properly and considered in decision support tools for efficient air traffic flow management. Therefore, the subjacent causes for uncertainties, their effects on the aircraft trajectory and their dependencies to each other must be understood in detail. Besides the atmospheric conditions as the main external cause, the aircraft itself induces uncertainties to its trajectory. In this study, a cause-and-effect model is introduced, which deals with multiple interdependent uncertainties with different stochastic behavior and their impact on trajectory prediction. The approach is applied to typical uncertainties in trajectory prediction, such as the actual take-off mass, non-constant true air speeds, and uncertain weather conditions. The continuous climb profiles of those disturbed trajectories are successfully predicted. In general, our approach is applicable to all sources of quantifiable interdependent uncertainties. Therewith, ground-based trajectory prediction can be improved and a successful implementation of trajectory-based operations in the European air traffic system can be advanced. Full article
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2018

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Article
Simulation Model to Calculate Bird-Aircraft Collisions and Near Misses in the Airport Vicinity
Aerospace 2018, 5(4), 112; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace5040112 - 25 Oct 2018
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 3350
Abstract
Annually, thousands of birds collide with aircraft. The impact usually has lethal consequences for the bird, the involved aircraft can experience severe damage. The highest bird strike risk occurs at low altitudes. Therefore, aircraft within the airport area as well as the adjacent [...] Read more.
Annually, thousands of birds collide with aircraft. The impact usually has lethal consequences for the bird, the involved aircraft can experience severe damage. The highest bird strike risk occurs at low altitudes. Therefore, aircraft within the airport area as well as the adjacent approach and departure corridors are especially vulnerable to collisions with birds. To analyse risk-reducing measures in these areas, a fast-time bird strike simulation environment was developed. An open-source Air Traffic Management simulator was enhanced with a model to represent bird movements and to recognize bird strikes. To confirm the reproducibility of the outcome, Monte Carlo simulations were performed. They included bird movement data from one year and air traffic flight plans for various air traffic volumes. The number of strikes and near misses showed an expected variance within the individual replications. The results indicate that the predictability of the number of strikes and near misses increases with rising number of birds, and rising air traffic intensity. Thus, by considering simulation scenarios including bird movement information from all seasons and a sufficient air traffic volume, the described set-up leads to stable results. Full article
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Article
Weather Impact on Airport Performance
Aerospace 2018, 5(4), 109; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace5040109 - 15 Oct 2018
Cited by 25 | Viewed by 4608
Abstract
Weather events have a significant impact on airport performance and cause delayed operations if the airport capacity is constrained. We provide quantification of the individual airport performance with regards to an aggregated weather-performance metric. Specific weather phenomena are categorized by the air traffic [...] Read more.
Weather events have a significant impact on airport performance and cause delayed operations if the airport capacity is constrained. We provide quantification of the individual airport performance with regards to an aggregated weather-performance metric. Specific weather phenomena are categorized by the air traffic management airport performance weather algorithm, which aims to quantify weather conditions at airports based on aviation routine meteorological reports. Our results are computed from a data set of 20.5 million European flights of 2013 and local weather data. A methodology is presented to evaluate the impact of weather events on the airport performance and to select the appropriate threshold for significant weather conditions. To provide an efficient method to capture the impact of weather, we modelled departing and arrival delays with probability distributions, which depend on airport size and meteorological impacts. These derived airport performance scores could be used in comprehensive air traffic network simulations to evaluate the network impact caused by weather induced local performance deterioration. Full article
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Article
A Cooperative Co-Evolutionary Optimisation Model for Best-Fit Aircraft Sequence and Feasible Runway Configuration in a Multi-Runway Airport
Aerospace 2018, 5(3), 85; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace5030085 - 09 Aug 2018
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 3805
Abstract
A careful arrival and departure sequencing of aircraft can reduce the inter-arrival/departure time, thereby opening up opportunities for new landing and/or take-off slots, which may increase the runway throughput. This sequence when serviced with a suitable runway configuration may result in an optimal [...] Read more.
A careful arrival and departure sequencing of aircraft can reduce the inter-arrival/departure time, thereby opening up opportunities for new landing and/or take-off slots, which may increase the runway throughput. This sequence when serviced with a suitable runway configuration may result in an optimal aircraft sequence with a runway configuration that can process the maximum number of aircraft within a given time interval. In this paper, we propose a Cooperative Co-evolutionary Genetic Algorithm (CCoGA) to find the combined solution of a best-fit sequence with a feasible runway configuration for a given traffic demand at an airport. The aircraft sequence and the runway configuration are modelled as individual species, which can cooperatively interact with each other. Therefore, we computationally evolve the best possible combination of aircraft sequence (arrival and departure) and the feasible runway configuration. The proposed CCoGA algorithm is evaluated for Chicago O’Hare International Airport runway layout and resulting configurations. Arrival and departure traffic demand is modelled through a Poisson distribution. Two different arrival/departure sequencing methods, i.e., constraint position shifting with one, two and N-position shifting and first come first serve, are modelled. Runway configuration and traffic sequence (arrivals and departure) are modelled as two species, which are evolved co-operatively, through the CCoGA algorithm, to achieve the optimal traffic sequencing with a feasible runway configuration. Time-space diagrams are presented for the best-evolved population of arrival-departure sequence and runway configuration to illustrate the possibility of using available departure slots between arrivals to maximize capacity. Arrival-departure capacity envelopes are then presented to illustrate the trade-off between the arrivals and departures, given a runway configuration for each sequencing method. Results demonstrate the high mutual dependence between arrival-departure sequence and the runway configuration, as well as its effect on overall runway capacity. The results also demonstrate the viability of using evolutionary computation-based methods for modelling and evaluating complex problems in the air transport domain. Full article
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Article
Robust Optimization of Airplane Passenger Seating Assignments
Aerospace 2018, 5(3), 80; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace5030080 - 01 Aug 2018
Cited by 20 | Viewed by 2979
Abstract
We present a method that reduces the time it takes to complete the passenger boarding of an airplane. In particular, we describe a two-stage mixed integer programming (MIP) approach, which assigns passengers to seats on an airplane based on the number of bags [...] Read more.
We present a method that reduces the time it takes to complete the passenger boarding of an airplane. In particular, we describe a two-stage mixed integer programming (MIP) approach, which assigns passengers to seats on an airplane based on the number of bags they carry aboard the plane. The first stage is an MIP that assigns passengers to seats to minimize the time to complete the boarding of the plane. The second-stage MIP also determines seating assignments, while constraining the total boarding time to that determined by the stage-one MIP and maximizing weighted slack times to provide a more robust assignment. Numerical results show that this two-stage approach results in lower average boarding times than the one-stage approach, when the time it takes passengers to walk and sit in their seats is random. Experiments indicate that the magnitude of the improvement is not very sensitive to variations in the slack time weights. Full article
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Article
Uncertainty Management at the Airport Transit View
Aerospace 2018, 5(2), 59; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace5020059 - 01 Jun 2018
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 4082
Abstract
Air traffic networks, where airports are the nodes that interconnect the entire system, have a time-varying and stochastic nature. An incident in the airport environment may easily propagate through the network and generate system-level effects. This paper analyses the aircraft flow through the [...] Read more.
Air traffic networks, where airports are the nodes that interconnect the entire system, have a time-varying and stochastic nature. An incident in the airport environment may easily propagate through the network and generate system-level effects. This paper analyses the aircraft flow through the Airport Transit View framework, focusing on the airspace/airside integrated operations. In this analysis, we use a dynamic spatial boundary associated with the Extended Terminal Manoeuvring Area concept. Aircraft operations are characterised by different temporal milestones, which arise from the combination of a Business Process Model for the aircraft flow and the Airport Collaborative Decision-Making methodology. Relationships between factors influencing aircraft processes are evaluated to create a probabilistic graphical model, using a Bayesian network approach. This model manages uncertainty and increases predictability, hence improving the system’s robustness. The methodology is validated through a case study at the Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas Airport, through the collection of nearly 34,000 turnaround operations. We present several lessons learned regarding delay propagation, time saturation, uncertainty precursors and system recovery. The contribution of the paper is two-fold: it presents a novel methodological approach for tackling uncertainty when linking inbound and outbound flights and it also provides insight on the interdependencies among factors driving performance. Full article
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Article
Faster Command Input Using the Multimodal Controller Working Position “TriControl”
Aerospace 2018, 5(2), 54; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace5020054 - 08 May 2018
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 3345
Abstract
TriControl is a controller working position (CWP) prototype developed by German Aerospace Center (DLR) to enable more natural, efficient, and faster command inputs. The prototype integrates three input modalities: speech recognition, eye tracking, and multi-touch sensing. Air traffic controllers may use all three [...] Read more.
TriControl is a controller working position (CWP) prototype developed by German Aerospace Center (DLR) to enable more natural, efficient, and faster command inputs. The prototype integrates three input modalities: speech recognition, eye tracking, and multi-touch sensing. Air traffic controllers may use all three modalities simultaneously to build commands that will be forwarded to the pilot and to the air traffic management (ATM) system. This paper evaluates possible speed improvements of TriControl compared to conventional systems involving voice transmission and manual data entry. 26 air traffic controllers participated in one of two air traffic control simulation sub-studies, one with each input system. Results show potential of a 15% speed gain for multimodal controller command input in contrast to conventional inputs. Thus, the use and combination of modern human machine interface (HMI) technologies at the CWP can increase controller productivity. Full article
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Article
Simulation of Random Events for Air Traffic Applications
Aerospace 2018, 5(2), 53; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace5020053 - 03 May 2018
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2893
Abstract
Resilience to uncertainties must be ensured in air traffic management. Unexpected events can either be disruptive, like thunderstorms or the famous volcano ash cloud resulting from the Eyjafjallajökull eruption in Iceland, or simply due to imprecise measurements or incomplete knowledge of the environment. [...] Read more.
Resilience to uncertainties must be ensured in air traffic management. Unexpected events can either be disruptive, like thunderstorms or the famous volcano ash cloud resulting from the Eyjafjallajökull eruption in Iceland, or simply due to imprecise measurements or incomplete knowledge of the environment. While human operators are able to cope with such situations, it is generally not the case for automated decision support tools. Important examples originate from the numerous attempts made to design algorithms able to solve conflicts between aircraft occurring during flights. The STARGATE (STochastic AppRoach for naviGATion functions in uncertain Environment) project was initiated in order to study the feasibility of inherently robust automated planning algorithms that will not fail when submitted to random perturbations. A mandatory first step is the ability to simulate the usual stochastic phenomenons impairing the system: delays due to airport platforms or air traffic control (ATC) and uncertainties on the wind velocity. The work presented here will detail algorithms suitable for the simulation task. Full article
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Article
The Public Safety Zones around Small and Medium Airports
Aerospace 2018, 5(2), 46; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace5020046 - 23 Apr 2018
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 3158
Abstract
Proper planning around airports safeguards the surrounding territory from risks of air accidents. Many countries have defined Public Safety Zones (PSZs) beyond the runway thresholds as a result of targeted risk assessment methods. Therefore, national aviation Authorities could limit building construction and industrial [...] Read more.
Proper planning around airports safeguards the surrounding territory from risks of air accidents. Many countries have defined Public Safety Zones (PSZs) beyond the runway thresholds as a result of targeted risk assessment methods. Therefore, national aviation Authorities could limit building construction and industrial development in order to contain the risk for dwellers to be involved in aircraft accidents. The number of people who live, work or congregate in these areas should be limited. The procedure to set Public Safety Zones is based on advanced technical analyses for major infrastructures. For smaller airports, simplified schemes are used, but, sometimes, they are not as effective when considering the actual safety conditions. This article aims to identify the shape and size of the Public Safety Zones for small and medium one-runway airports. The influence of the volume and mix of traffic on the PSZ geometry has been evaluated using the program named SARA (Sapienza Airport Risk Analysis); the results are correlated with the current Risk Plans generally adopted in Italy. According to the air traffic, the Risk Plans are characterized by a dynamic definition and fit the results obtained from risk assessment. Full article
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Article
Simulation-Based Virtual Cycle for Multi-Level Airport Analysis
Aerospace 2018, 5(2), 44; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace5020044 - 19 Apr 2018
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 3547
Abstract
The aeronautical industry is expanding after a period of economic turmoil. For this reason, a growing number of airports are facing capacity problems that can sometimes only be resolved by expanding infrastructure, with the inherent risks that such decisions create. In order to [...] Read more.
The aeronautical industry is expanding after a period of economic turmoil. For this reason, a growing number of airports are facing capacity problems that can sometimes only be resolved by expanding infrastructure, with the inherent risks that such decisions create. In order to deal with uncertainty at different levels, it is necessary to have relevant tools during an expansion project or during the planning phases of new infrastructure. This article presents a methodology that combines simulation approaches with different description levels that complement each other when applied to the development of a new airport. The methodology is illustrated with an example that uses two models for an expansion project of an airport in The Netherlands. One model focuses on the operation of the airport from a high-level position, while the second focuses on other technical aspects of the operation that challenge the feasibility of the proposed configuration of the apron. The results show that by applying the methodology, analytical power is enhanced and the risk of making the wrong decisions is reduced. We identified the limitations that the future facility will have and the impact of the physical characteristics of the traffic that will operate in the airport. The methodology can be used for tackling different problems and studying particular performance indicators to help decision-makers take more informed decisions. Full article
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Article
Fast Aircraft Turnaround Enabled by Reliable Passenger Boarding
Aerospace 2018, 5(1), 8; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace5010008 - 15 Jan 2018
Cited by 44 | Viewed by 5712
Abstract
Future 4D aircraft trajectories demand comprehensive consideration of environmental, economic, and operational constraints, as well as reliable prediction of all aircraft-related processes. Mutual interdependencies between airports result in system-wide, far-reaching effects in the air traffic network (reactionary delays). To comply with airline/airport challenges [...] Read more.
Future 4D aircraft trajectories demand comprehensive consideration of environmental, economic, and operational constraints, as well as reliable prediction of all aircraft-related processes. Mutual interdependencies between airports result in system-wide, far-reaching effects in the air traffic network (reactionary delays). To comply with airline/airport challenges over the day of operations, a change to an air-to-air perspective is necessary, with a specific focus on the aircraft ground operations as major driver for airline punctuality. Aircraft ground trajectories primarily consists of handling processes at the stand (deboarding, catering, fueling, cleaning, boarding, unloading, loading), which are defined as the aircraft turnaround. Turnaround processes are mainly controlled by ground handling, airport, or airline staff, except the aircraft boarding, which is driven by passengers’ experience and willingness/ability to follow the proposed boarding procedures. This paper provides an overview of the research done in the field of aircraft boarding and introduces a reliable, calibrated, and stochastic aircraft boarding model. The stochastic boarding model is implemented in a simulation environment to evaluate specific boarding scenarios using different boarding strategies and innovative technologies. Furthermore, the potential of a connected aircraft cabin as sensor network is emphasized, which could provide information on the current and future status of the boarding process. Full article
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2017

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Article
Comparative Study of Aircraft Boarding Strategies Using Cellular Discrete Event Simulation
Aerospace 2017, 4(4), 57; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace4040057 - 28 Nov 2017
Cited by 18 | Viewed by 4660
Abstract
Time is crucial in the airlines industry. Among all factors contributing to an aircraft turnaround time; passenger boarding delays is the most challenging one. Airlines do not have control over the behavior of passengers; thus, focusing their effort on reducing passenger boarding time [...] Read more.
Time is crucial in the airlines industry. Among all factors contributing to an aircraft turnaround time; passenger boarding delays is the most challenging one. Airlines do not have control over the behavior of passengers; thus, focusing their effort on reducing passenger boarding time through implementing efficient boarding strategies. In this work, we attempt to use cellular Discrete-Event System Specification (Cell-DEVS) modeling and simulation to provide a comprehensive evaluation of aircraft boarding strategies. We have developed a simulation benchmark consisting of eight boarding strategies including Back-to-Front; Window Middle Aisle; Random; Zone Rotate; Reverse Pyramid; Optimal; Optimal Practical; and Efficient. Our simulation models are scalable and adaptive; providing a powerful analysis apparatus for investigating any existing or yet to be discovered boarding strategy. We explain the details of our models and present the results both visually and numerically to evaluate the eight implemented boarding strategies. We also compare our results with other studies that have used different modeling techniques; reporting nearly identical performance results. The simulations revealed that Window Middle Aisle provides the least boarding delay; with a small fraction of time difference compared to the optimal strategy. The results of this work could highly benefit the commercial airlines industry by optimizing and reducing passenger boarding delays. Full article
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Article
An Efficient Application of the MOEA/D Algorithm for Designing Noise Abatement Departure Trajectories
Aerospace 2017, 4(4), 54; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace4040054 - 01 Nov 2017
Cited by 16 | Viewed by 4773
Abstract
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. [...] Read more.
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. Full article
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Article
Optimization of Air Traffic Control Training at the Federal Aviation Administration Academy
Aerospace 2017, 4(4), 50; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace4040050 - 28 Oct 2017
Cited by 14 | Viewed by 5296
Abstract
This paper investigates current and future uses of simulation in the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Academy’s Air Traffic Control (ATC) training program to identify potential improvement areas in the areas of simulation technologies and course content. Once identified, recommendations for changes to the [...] Read more.
This paper investigates current and future uses of simulation in the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Academy’s Air Traffic Control (ATC) training program to identify potential improvement areas in the areas of simulation technologies and course content. Once identified, recommendations for changes to the current training program are made. A literature review of the current training techniques used at the FAA Academy and training centers was conducted. In addition, interviews were held and surveys were distributed to collect data regarding a variety of ATC training interest areas, such as virtual reality, current maintenance schedules, and simulator features. Finally, a cost-benefit analysis was conducted to determine the potential improvement areas with the highest feasibility for implementation and the highest potential to reduce training costs and/or time. The primary findings of this research revealed three feasible improvement areas to the current training process and simulation technologies: (1) reducing the dependence on instructors during simulation training, (2) utilizing web-based training methods, and (3) updating current simulator systems to include new features, such as recording and playback features. These changes were recommended to be implemented first, with voice recognition and virtual reality improvement areas being recommended as priority focus areas for future studies and/or implementation. Full article
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