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Small Business Innovation Research/Small Business Tech Transfer

Integrated Multi-Mode Automation for Trajectory Based Operations

Completed Technology Project

Project Description

Integrated Multi-Mode Automation for Trajectory Based Operations, Phase I
Air Traffic Management's lack of support for aircraft with different capabilities is a long standing and persistent issue that can limit the ability of the National Airspace System (NAS) to take full advantage of advanced aircraft capabilities. To fully utilize the variety of Trajectory Based Operations (TBO) concepts planned for the NAS, some of which utilize advanced aircraft capabilities for implementing trajectories, an air traffic controller (ATC) must be able to simultaneously support a variety of TBO concepts using different aircraft automation systems to fly the desired trajectory. To accomplish this, the ATC needs automation support to simplify the inherent complexities of using a variety of different TBO concepts and trajectory implementation strategies and provide the controller with the tools needed to execute the desired trajectories, maintain situational awareness at all times, and support off-nominal situations. As depicted in Figure 1, IMMA (Integrated Multi-Mode Automation) provides the automation to simplify the inherent complexities of using multiple TBO concepts by focusing the controller interactions on common core functions (e.g., the initial clearance, compliance monitoring) that all TBO concepts must support. For example, monitoring compliance for an aircraft using speed/path to control delivery time at a metering point is different than monitoring compliance for an aircraft executing Flight Interval Management (FIM) which maintains a time-based spacing interval with another aircraft. Using IMMA, the controller doesn't need to track compliance differently for the two different implementations because the automation accounts for the difference and simply informs him if an aircraft is out of compliance. More »

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