NASA SBIR 2007 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 07-1 A3.01-8982
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Next Generation Air Transportation System - Airspace
PROPOSAL TITLE: Robust Traffic Flow Management: Coevolutionary Approach

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Metron Aviation, Inc.
131 Elden Street, Suite 200
Herndon, VA 20170 - 4758
(703) 456-0123

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Rafal Kicinger
131 Elden St., Ste 200
Herndon, VA 20170 - 4758
(703) 234-0771

Expected Technology Readiness Level (TRL) upon completion of contract: 2 to 3

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
We will develop a Coevolutionary Decision Support Tool (CDST) that explicitly incorporates weather uncertainty (non-probabilistically) into strategic Traffic Flow Management (TFM) and automatically generates robust rerouting strategies for the National Airspace System (NAS) operating in inclement weather. The CDST will utilize coevolutionary algorithms (CEAs) (an emerging class of algorithms extending traditional genetic algorithms) to concurrently search the solution spaces of aircraft routing strategies and hazardous weather scenarios. By using the tool, Airline Operations Control (AOC) and Air Traffic Control System Command Center (ATCSCC) Traffic Management Unit (TMU) personnel can achieve two key strategic TFM objectives:
1. Identification of robust aircraft rerouting strategies, i.e., strategies which perform well against a large spectrum of hazardous weather scenarios, and
2. Discovery of vulnerabilities of the NAS with respect to certain weather conditions.
The CDST will employ new theoretical and conceptual (non-probabilistic) methods of incorporating weather information into strategic TFM planning, also developed a part of this project. These methods will be subsequently utilized to create efficient computational representations of weather scenarios and aircraft rerouting strategies which can be manipulated by CEAs. In addition, a set of metrics for assessing the quality, or fitness, of produced solutions (both weather scenarios and rerouting strategies) will be developed as well as a metric for measuring the improvement of achieved TFM robustness. The CDST will be implemented in a prototype system which will be subsequently used to demonstrate feasibility of the proposed approach. This technology will be developed to Technology Readiness Level (TRL) 2 by the end of Phase I, and TRL 4 prototype system by the end of Phase II.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The proposed tool offers a R&D capability that enables NASA researchers to investigate new techniques for TFM for the future. When used in conjunction with the Future ATM Concept Evaluation Tool (FACET), the CDST can be utilized to study new TFM procedures that create robust strategies in weather constrained airspaces. It can also be combined with the Airspace Concept Evaluation System (ACES) simulation tool, to study future policies and procedures for TFM and to investigate the benefits of robust TFM strategies in severe weather type days.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The proposed tool has application to other Government agencies which involved with the development of NGATS, i.e., FAA, and the Departments of Defense, Commerce, and Transportation. Each of these agencies faces the need to properly address weather uncertainties in their strategic planning phase and use advanced decision support tools to discover robust strategies to improve the efficiency and predictability of TFM. It should also be useful to aviation-related commercial firms of all types (airlines, airports, aerospace companies, consultants, etc.) that need access to a methodology and algorithms that will help them identify and mitigate the effects of hazardous weather.

NASA's technology taxonomy has been developed by the SBIR-STTR program to disseminate awareness of proposed and awarded R/R&D in the agency. It is a listing of over 100 technologies, sorted into broad categories, of interest to NASA.

Airport Infrastructure and Safety
Guidance, Navigation, and Control

Form Generated on 09-18-07 17:50