NASA selected Saab Sensis for the NASA Research Announcement (NRA) “Adaptation of a Surface Management Tool to Multiple, Capacity-Constrained Airports.” Under the NRA, Saab Sensis will identify three current-day capacity-constrained airports and create departure scheduling schemes to be tested within NASA’s Surface Operations Simulator and Scheduler (SOSS). Through the research, Saab Sensis will broaden the scope of the NASA airport surface traffic optimization research beyond current trials to further determine their ability to enhance airport capacity through improved sequencing and scheduling, the company said.
As part of the research into effective strategies for mitigating capacity issues, NASA is researching, developing and testing a number of decision support tools (DST) for future deployment in the National Airspace System (NAS) to assist air traffic controllers in addressing capacity issues.
The NRA will examine taxi-out delays, scheduled departure demand versus airport departure capacity and other characteristics. For the three airports, Saab Sensis will develop airport surface traffic scheduling approaches along with the ability to interject real-world operational constraints for testing within the SOSS tool.
“Addressing capacity issues through new Decision Support Tools that improve utilization of current runways and taxiways will positively impact air travel for the public through reduced delays and better on-time performance,” said Ken Kaminski, vice president and general manager of Saab Sensis. “Saab Sensis will apply its surface traffic management modeling, simulation and DST development experience to accelerate the adaptation of these promising new tools for use in the NAS as a less costly capacity-reduction alternative to capital improvement projects like building more runways.”