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Small Business Innovation Research/Small Business Tech Transfer

360-Degree Analysis Engine for Autonomous NAS Operations and Control

Completed Technology Project

Project Description

360-Degree Analysis Engine for Autonomous NAS Operations and Control, Phase I
NASA researchers have been studying ground-based conflict detection and resolution for at least ten years. Under the tool proposed herein, these researchers will be able to evaluate both the performance impact and the environmental impact. The environmental impact is important for obtaining approval to move the ground-based conflict detection and resolutions algorithms to higher Technology Readiness Levels (TRLs). Besides helping advance the AAC and tAAC algorithms, NASA researchers can experiment with autonomous operations in the NAS under a variety of different traffic loads (including UAS traffic), weather patterns, and even degrees of autonomy—from full autonomy to autonomous operations that are restricted to certain classes of airspace (such as class A). Insights gained by these experiments in the virtual world will help the community understand the benefits—and potential limits—of future autonomous operations in the NAS. Some of the research questions that can be answered by such a tool include the following. To what extent does the noise footprint of an automated separation assurance algorithm hinder its acceptance by the public? To what extent is fuel burn reduced by using automated separation assurance? How great a flight density can an automated separation assurance function allow? Under what conditions might an automated separation assurance algorithm require manual intervention? More »

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