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10.09.07 Division Highlights

Modeling and Optimization of Traffic Flow Management: Dr. Banavar Sridhar presented the paper "Classification of Aggregate Delay Using Center-Based Weather Impacted Traffic Index" at the 7th AIAA Aviation Technology, Integration, and Operations Conference. The paper relates weather, traffic, and delay in today's airspace system. It provides a way to evaluate the overall airspace system behavior and to measure the effect of changes in operations. After the conference, Dr. Sridhar visited the Institute for Aviation and the Environment, University of Cambridge, U.K. He presented a seminar on "Modeling and Optimization of Traffic Flow Management" to faculty and students.

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Kickoff for Non-Convective Weather Impacts on Traffic Flow Management: Mosaic ATM and AvMet Applications International are the partners in this research. Here, a model will translate weather information, such as current marine strata forecasts, into a traffic-flow-management constraint. Initial focus will be on improved models of fog burn-off at San Francisco International Airport. These burn-off predictions strongly affect traffic flows due to inefficient Ground Delay Programs (GDPs). A research objective is to develop more efficient GDPs.

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Dynamic Critical Points in the National Airspace: The Dynamic Airspace Configuration Associate Principal Investigator submitted a report on dynamic critical points in the national airspace. Trajectory crossings from four hours of flight track data defined these points. Comparisons with static airway intersections showed closer correlation in the high-density east coast than elsewhere. Lessons learned will guide dynamic airspace designs around the points as traffic changes during the day.

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Human Factors and Ergonomics Conference Presentation: Savvy Verma presented the paper "Developing a Decision Support Interface for Surface domain Air Traffic Controllers" at the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society Conference. The paper described a study that examined a surface operations automation tool and its impact on controllers. The tool plans taxi operations for better efficiency on the ground. While additional automation reduced workload, undesired reductions occurred in controller decision-making and planning. The authors suggested a more careful balance in allocating automation and human roles when introducing additional automation into the tower environment. The study results will be applicable to the Airportal project by defining information requirements and presentation needs.

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Kickoff for Translation of Weather Information to Traffic Flow Management Impact: Dr. Jimmy Krozel of Metron Aviation led the kickoff meeting. "Hard" and "soft" constraints can characterize weather hazards. The approach models hard constraints as areas where no aircraft can pass and soft constraints where aircraft can, and prefer to, pass. A geometric multi-commodity flow problem can model and determine airspace flow capacity with hard and soft constraints. In the model, different points in the airspace receive commodity restrictions. Here, the "commodity" refers to the equipage of the aircraft in the domain. The optimization problem is a form of multi-criteria optimization. The goal is to determine if it is possible to route a specified amount of flow for each class. For example, air lanes might exist for aircraft that can fly through soft constraints versus air lanes for aircraft that cannot. This approach will ensure appropriate modeling of weather impacts as a function of weather forecasting uncertainties.

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Surface Modeling Connectivity Achieved: A one-way connection now exists between the Airspace Target Generator (ATG) and the Surface Management System (SMS). This achievement represents a major step for real-time surface simulations. SMS received and displayed track targets for arrivals and surface aircraft. Software developers and researchers are developing the ability for SMS to process and display departure aircraft. The communication interface is not complete, but is underway, for a two-way interface between ATG and SMS. A real-time surface simulation capability will enable the verification of optimization algorithms.

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Terminal Area and Airport Surface Editor Development: A kick-off meeting with Intelligent Automation Incorporated discussed a Terminal Area and Airport Surface Editor. It will support a standard set of terminal airspace and surface descriptions. The editor will be a global tool that supports the Airspace Concept Evaluation System, the Center TRACON Automation System, the Surface Management System, and the Airspace Traffic Generator. The tool will allow users to define waypoints and connect them with flight paths to create airport surface and terminal-area network models.

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Last Updated: November 7, 2018

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