In this paper, we present an airspace planning model (APM) that has been developed for use in both tactical and strategic planning contexts under various airspace scenarios. Given a set of flights for a particular time horizon, along with (possibly several) alternative flight-plans for each flight that are based on delays and diversions, due to special-use airspace (SUA) restrictions prompted by launches at spaceports or adverse weather conditions, this model prescribes a set of flight-plans to be implemented. The model formulation seeks to minimize and delay fuel-cost-based objective function, subject to the constraints that each flight is assigned one of the designated flight-plans, and that the resulting set of flight-plans satisfies certain specified workload, safety, and equity criteria. These requirements ensure that the workload for air-traffic controllers in each sector is held under a permissible limit, that any potential conflicts are routinely resolvable, and that the various airlines involved derive equitable levels of benefits from the overall implemented schedule. To solve the resulting 0-1 mixed-integer programming problem more effectively using commercial software (e.g., CPLEX-MIP), we explore the use of reformulation techniques designed to more closely approximate the convex hull of feasible solutions to the problem. We also prescribe a polynomial-time heuristic procedure that is demonstrated to provide solutions to the problem within 0.01% of optimality. Computational results are reported on several scenarios based on actual flight data obtained from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to demonstrate the efficacy of the proposed approach for air-traffic management (ATM) purposes.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Civil and Structural Engineering