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Strategic Planning of Efficient Oceanic Flights

Abstract : The efficiency of oceanic flights is low due to limited navigational and communication equipment, congestion and airspace restrictions. The availability of Automated Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) and other improvements provides opportunity for better strategic planning of trajectories. Transatlantic flights between US and Europe constitute one of the busiest oceanic airspace regions in the world. This paper examines the benefits of a wind-optimal trajectory concept with a strategic de-confliction component compared to the current flight planning using the North Atlantic Tracks. The methodology generates a wind-optimal route for each aircraft and a strategic reduction in the potential conflicts between aircraft by a combination of small adjustments to departure times and rerouting. The de-confliction is achieved by optimization techniques involving simulated annealing with local gradient searching. The fuel burn for the tracks in today’s Organized Track System are compared with the corresponding quantities for the wind-optimized routes to evaluate the potential benefits of flying wind-optimal routes in North Atlantic Airspace. The analysis is based on air traffic between US and Europe during July 2012.The potential fuel savings depend on existing inefficiencies in current flight plans, atmospheric conditions and location of the city-pairs. The paper provides both aggregate results and detailed examination of some of the most popular city-pairs. Results show that strategic planning can improve the efficiency of flight trajectories by 3 to 5%depending on city-pairs and aircraft type. This translates into a potential fuel savings in the range of (420-970) kg per flight for a Boeing 767-300, the most widely used aircraft between the city-pairs in this study.
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Submitted on : Friday, June 26, 2015 - 12:16:04 PM
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Banavar Sridhar, Neil Y Chen, K Ng Hok, Olga Rodionova, Daniel Delahaye, et al.. Strategic Planning of Efficient Oceanic Flights. ATM seminar 2015, 11th USA/EUROPE Air Traffic Management R&D Seminar, FAA & Eurocontrol, Jun 2015, Lisboa, Portugal. ⟨hal-01168653⟩

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