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Division Highlights

Tactical Departure Scheduling-Terminal Initial Shadow Evaluation Completed
August 8, 2014

Photo of NASA researchers and FAA subject matter experts observing TDS-T activity on computer monitors.

On July 31, NASA's Tactical Departure Scheduling – Terminal (TDS-T) team hosted FAA subject matter experts for an initial shadow evaluation at the North Texas Research Station (NTX) in Fort Worth, Texas. The TDS-T research activity addresses the challenge of simultaneously satisfying national, regional, and local departure constraints while accommodating traffic from both well-equipped and less-equipped airports. During the last year, the TDS-T team has: analyzed nationwide terminal departure operations to assess potential benefits and understand requirements, designed and evaluated a new terminal departure scheduling algorithm, and implemented the scheduling algorithm in a TDS-T prototype decision support tool. For this initial shadow evaluation, traffic management supervisors and front-line managers from Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW) TRACON and the air traffic control towers at DFW and Dallas Love airports interacted with the TDS-T prototype decision support tool in the NTX laboratory. The TDS-T prototype tool was running in shadow mode with live data feeds. Several TDS-T prototype user interfaces were configured to represent different terminal departure control environments: TRACON traffic management unit (TMU), large airport Tower, and small airport Tower. The FAA subject matter experts provided feedback on the TDS-T concept and the prototype tool. The TDS-T team will use this feedback to further refine the concept and technology in preparation for shadow evaluations in operational environments slated to begin late this year. (POC: Shawn Engelland)

Fully-Integrated ATD-1 Test (FIAT) Shakedown Simulation #5 Completed
August 8, 2014

The second shakedown simulation of FIAT-5 was conducted from July 28-31 and focused on Albuquerque Center (ZAB) airspace. The objectives of the shakedown were to validate the interoperability of Time-based Flow Management (TBFM) version 4.2 in NASA Ames Research Center's air traffic control lab environment and to test the ground interval management for spacing (GIM-S) tool. GIM-S is a new capability in TBFM 4.2 that provides speed advisories to Center controllers with the expectation that it will reduce the amount of radar vector instructions required. GIM-S started operational testing and evaluation (OT&E) simulations at the William J. Hughes Tech Center (WJHTC) in May 2014, and is planned to be operational in ZAB in September 2014. GIM-S is expected to provide the required meter-fix delivery accuracy needed for the Terminal Sequencing and Spacing (TSS) technologies. For FIAT-5, new user interfaces had to be developed for Center controllers' GIM-S displays. During the course of the shakedown, variations in operational concepts and phraseology were developed to accommodate GIM-S. By the end of the shakedown, a strategy was devised for GIM-S adaptation and usage to be tested in future FIAT-5 simulations. The next FIAT-5 shakedown starts on September 9, 2014. (POC: Kevin Witzberger)

DLR Research Collaboration Continues in Airport Surface Research
August 8, 2014

Dr. Jörn Jakobi from the German Aerospace Agency (Deutsche Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt, DLR) visited NASA Ames Research Center on July 28, 2014 to continue collaboration on a harmonized concept of operations of 4D airport surface taxi operations. The team members further defined the scope of concept and gained agreement on high level concept elements. A draft of the concept is due by the end of December 2014. (POC: Yoon Jung)

American Airlines and FAA Participate in SARDA Simulation Data Collection
August 8, 2014

The Spot and Runway Departure Advisor (SARDA) airport surface research team completed a week of data collection July 28 to August 1 in NASA Ames Research Center's FutureFlight Central (FFC) facility. The experiment is the fourth in a series of six planned human-in-the-loop simulations to evaluate a surface scheduling technology, including ramp tower displays, using the Charlotte-Douglas International Airport (Charlotte, North Carolina) (CLT) as the target airport in the simulation. American Airlines (formerly US Airways) personnel participated as ramp tower controllers in the experiment in which the team, for the first time, simulated the entire turnaround operation for a bank of flights from arrival to departure. FAA tower controllers from CLT also observed the simulation operations. It is expected that the SARDA capability will eventually be tested in the American Airlines ramp tower at CLT within the next 2 years. (POC: Yoon Jung)

American Airlines and FAA Meet with NASA Surface Researchers
August 8, 2014

On July 29-30, 2014, NASA Ames airport surface researchers developing the SARDA tool met with an FAA surface operations office representative, Charlotte-Douglas International Airport (CLT) tower controllers, and American Airlines ramp tower and operations planning leads to discuss their interest in supporting a field test of the SARDA capability at the American Airlines CLT ramp tower. Current surface automation technologies and surface operations at CLT were discussed. NASA provided an overview of its surface research and simulation efforts, and details on the core functions and user interface of SARDA. (POC: Yoon Jung)

Aviation Systems Division Participation at the International Conference on Human-Computer Interaction in Aerospace (HCI-Aero 2014)
August 8, 2014

Researchers and managers from the Aviation Systems Division at NASA Ames Research Center participated in a recent conference held in Santa Clara, CA, which highlights research and advancements in airspace operations. The HCI-Aero 2014 conference, which was sponsored by the Florida Institute of Technology, San Jose State University Research Foundation, and the University of Glasgow, was focused on advancements in integration and functional allocation, and also had a number of paper presentations focused on the concept and technologies supporting Single Pilot Operations and Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (or Remotely-Piloted Airspace Systems). The Division participants presented technical work on Single Pilot Operations, Modeling and Simulation of Function Allocation concepts, and Augmented Reality technologies and moderated a panel on the measurement of user workload in aviation and air traffic management research. The conference was attended by researchers from government, industry and academia from the United States and Europe. (POC: Katharine Lee)

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