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Reducing Flight Delays Through Better Traffic Management Essay (Article Review)

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Updated: Jun 9th, 2022

The article by Sud et al. (2009) addresses the efforts of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to mitigate the inefficiencies in managing traffic flows. The article introduces the overall scope of responsibilities of the FAA in terms of resolving traffic-related issues and describes the problem that the innovation team was tasked to resolve. The authors structured their article by dividing the content into the problem identification section, applying interactive simulation described as a solution and the benefits of the implemented solution to the stakeholders.

The problem that the FAA faced was impacted by the increase in aviation transportation use in recent years and the consequential difficulties in regulating and controlling traffic and flow of aircraft. Two problematic issues needed urgent technology-informed resolution, namely, air traffic control and flow management. It was tested and claimed that previously applied tools, including ETMS-based Flow Constrained Area (FCA) tool and Ground Delay Program (GDP) for controlling and tracking weather- and traffic-related delays were insufficient for the increased demands. A more efficient and equitable technological tool was necessary to address the underperformance of GDPs utilization.

A vivid illustration of the old system’s ineffectiveness was the frequent occurrence of underperformance that resulted in system disruptions and significant monetary losses. The GDP approach does not effectively differentiate the flights and causes delays in routes where no weather problems are identified. The new tool was expected to eliminate the management problems and ensure effective evaluation of multiple traffic management initiatives.

The solution proposed by the team included a newly designed operational aviation initiative called the Airspace Flow Program (AFP). Such traffic management solutions as “network flow models and integer programming solutions” were first applied to operational aviation to integrate multiple task resolution in one tool (Sud et al., 2009, p. 39). Notably, the developers managed to utilize a minimum of new software within a short period to suffice with the requirements of a complex system of civilian aviation without disrupting its operations. The existing tools and software were uses as a basis for significant improvements in en route weather management.

The solution updated user interface for faster and more efficient use by managers. AFP included automated flight planning procedure capable of incorporating multiple factors. In addition, graphical comparison of capacity to demand, algorithms for accurate delay computing, improved communication infrastructure for timely sharing of delay details between flight operators, and specific procedures for testing user-friendly utilization. Since AFP utilized currently existing infrastructure, it helped minimize costs and ensure the benefits for multiple stakeholders.

The developed solution to aviation traffic-flow management problem in the form of AFP benefited both airlines and passengers. The airlines obtained a new highly-efficient and affordable system capable of regulating weather-related costs. The tool included a regression model that predicted costs related to severe weather days and minimized operational disruptions. The monetary benefits of the newly applied program constituted $118.5 million as of the first two years since launching (Sud et al., 2009).

As for the passengers, they obtained an option for rebooking their flights if their initial flights were canceled. In such a manner, airlines increased their safety and capacity, and passengers benefited from efficient and reliable aviation means. Thus, the tool designed based on an interactive simulation model addressing the traffic and flow management problems was capable of incorporating the latest technologies to minimize costs and ensure the efficiency of the new tool.

Reference

Sud, V. P., Tanino, M., Wetherly, J., Brennan, M., Lehky, M., Howard, K., & Oiesen, R. (2009). Reducing flight delays through better traffic management. Interfaces, 39(1), 35–45.

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IvyPanda. (2022, June 9). Reducing Flight Delays Through Better Traffic Management. https://ivypanda.com/essays/reducing-flight-delays-through-better-traffic-management-by-sud-et-al/

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"Reducing Flight Delays Through Better Traffic Management." IvyPanda, 9 June 2022, ivypanda.com/essays/reducing-flight-delays-through-better-traffic-management-by-sud-et-al/.

1. IvyPanda. "Reducing Flight Delays Through Better Traffic Management." June 9, 2022. https://ivypanda.com/essays/reducing-flight-delays-through-better-traffic-management-by-sud-et-al/.


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IvyPanda. "Reducing Flight Delays Through Better Traffic Management." June 9, 2022. https://ivypanda.com/essays/reducing-flight-delays-through-better-traffic-management-by-sud-et-al/.

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IvyPanda. 2022. "Reducing Flight Delays Through Better Traffic Management." June 9, 2022. https://ivypanda.com/essays/reducing-flight-delays-through-better-traffic-management-by-sud-et-al/.

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IvyPanda. (2022) 'Reducing Flight Delays Through Better Traffic Management'. 9 June.

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