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Comparison Between Two Wind-Optimal Strategic Flight Plannings for North Atlantic Traffic

Abstract : The North Atlantic oceanic airspace is considered the most congested oceanic airspace in the world. For many years, air traffic control in this airspace has experienced difficulties due to the limited radar coverage. To support conflict-free flight progress, a structure of routes, called the organized track system, is established in the North Atlantic airspace and very restrictive separation standards are applied. The development of the automated dependent surveillance-broadcast system provides an opportunity to improve the flight planning operations over the oceans by reducing separation norms. The aim of this study is to improve the traffic efficiency in the North Atlantic airspace by developing new approaches to organize the transatlantic traffic at the strategic level. The first considered approach proposes a new route structure, referred to as the wind-optimal track network, to replace the organized track system, whereas the second one is based on the wind-optimal free routes. The problem is modeled as an optimization problem and resolved further via simulated annealing combined with a sliding window algorithm. The results of the simulations performed on the real traffic data prove that about 76% of flights decrease their cruising times by more than half of an hour when flying wind-optimal tracks rather than using their great circle routes from the departure to the destination. Furthermore, by comparing the two proposed methods, it is concluded that using wind-optimal free routes implies lower cruising times, whereas the wind-optimal track network is much more robust under changing wind fields.
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Submitted on : Saturday, January 12, 2019 - 3:39:45 PM
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Imen Dhief, Daniel Delahaye, Nour Elhouda Dougui, Olga Rodionova. Comparison Between Two Wind-Optimal Strategic Flight Plannings for North Atlantic Traffic. Journal of Air Transportation, AIAA, 2019, 27 (1), pp. 26-38. ⟨10.2514/1.D0110⟩. ⟨hal-01974474⟩

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