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HIGHLIGHTS ARCHIVE
Division Highlights


Visit to American Airlines Operations Center
September 4, 2014

Dr. Banavar Sridhar and Dr. Kapil Sheth visited the American Airlines (AA) Operations Center in Fort Worth, Texas on August 29. Paul Borchers and Keenan Roach from NASA's North Texas (NTX) Research Station also supported the meeting. Dr. Sridhar presented an overview of the potential benefits of wind-optimal routes compared to the current flight routes along the North Atlantic Track System to AA Flight Planning, Operations Coordinator/Dispatcher, Operations Planning and Decision Support, and Operations Research departments. The audience included Mike Sterenchuck and Desmond Keany, key AA collaborators in NASA's Dynamic Weather Routing (DWR) research. Using examples of specific AA flights, the group discussed the influence of aircraft weight, airspace costs, and winds on the generation of wind-optimal routes. The meeting provided NASA with an airline's view of non-fuel related costs associated with the generation of a good flight plan. AA has promised to provide data about the AA transatlantic flights for better comparison of the benefits. AA expressed interest in the analysis of the benefits of wind-optimal routes for flights within the United States. (POC: Dr. Banavar Sridhar)


Operational Integration Assessment (OIA) Progress Continues
September 4, 2014

Successful initial integration of the Terminal Sequencing and Spacing (TSS)-enhanced Standard Terminal Automation Replacement System (STARS) prototype into the FAA's William J. Hughes Technical Center (WJHTC) lab was achieved in August. The next integration activity at the WJHTC is scheduled for October and will utilize Time Based Flow Management (TBFM) v. 4.2 and test connectivity to the FAA's En Route Automation Modernization (ERAM) system. At NASA Ames Research Center, the OIA team is preparing for the next shakedown simulation for the Fully-Integrated ATD-1 Test (FIAT)-5 (September 9-11) for which Raytheon has installed an additional STARS terminal controller workstation in the Aviation Systems Division's air traffic control lab. This simulation will validate the integration of this fourth workstation and an updated version of the STARS-Controller Managed Spacing (CMS) OpEval Upleveled Tools (SCOUT), in preparation for OIA testing at the WJHTC. This shakedown will also be the first time at Ames that all four terminal controller positions are utilizing FAA hardware, rather than a combination of FAA STARS hardware and the Multi-Aircraft Control System (MACS) emulation of STARS. (POC: Kevin Witzberger)


American Airlines and FAA Participate in SARDA Simulation Data Collection
September 4, 2014

The Spot and Runway Departure Advisor (SARDA) airport surface research team completed a week of data collection August 25-29 in NASA Ames Research Center's FutureFlight Central (FFC) facility. The experiment is the fifth 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 simulated the new operational conditions added to scenarios previously simulated, including traffic flow management initiatives (e.g., Expected Departure Clearance Times and Miles-in-Trail restrictions). Also, a new feature for the scheduler function was added to advise ramp controllers of different taxiways to use in order to avoid congestion in the ramp area. Data was collected under “baseline” simulation conditions, representing current day operations with paper strips. An FAA tower controller and a supervisor from CLT also observed the simulation operations and provided valuable feedback. The SARDA data collection human-in-the-loop simulation is scheduled for three weeks beginning the week of September 29. 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: Ty Hoang)


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