Aviation consultants, the FAA itself, and other professionals can use this tool to gain a better understanding of the role of autonomous operations in the NAS. Suppose, for example, a UAS manufacturer is considering a particular autonomous algorithm that they want to include in their design. Using this tool, the manufacturer can determine whether the vehicle will fly correctly in the presence of a future autonomous NAS, and therefore whether the investment in building the aircraft will yield a positive net return. The FAA can use this tool to become acquainted with a partially or fully autonomous NAS operation, to determine to what extent autonomy should be introduced, and on what timetable and what the expected benefits will be. This information is important for producing an autonomy roadmap that will allow FAA program managers to specify the steps, and timetable, needed to further transform the NAS.
Air Transportation and Safety, Analytical Methods, Algorithms/Control Software and Systems, Simulation and Modeling