This proposal is highly relevant to NASA’s SBIR Topic A3.01, “Advanced Air Traffic Management System Concepts,” within Focus Area 20, “Airspace Operations and Safety.”
In the NAS, approximately 70 percent of flight delays are caused by weather, according to FAA statistics. By providing a planning tool to explore alternate routes in a timely manner using the most up-to-date Traffic Management Initiative (TMI) and weather information, flight delays can be mitigated or reduced. The Alternate Route Availability Tool (ARAT) will apply TMI information consumed from NASA’s Digital Information Platform (DIP) with current and forecasted weather to assess alternate routes between city pairs. Flight routes impacted by these conditions will be recommended to be avoided based on the severity of the restriction or weather phenomena.
ARAT applies to this specific topic because it allows flight operators to better understand weather implications on proposed alternate routes and efficiently choose the best route amendment to file.
ARAT will accelerate the implementation of NASA technologies in the current and future National Airspace System (NAS) by leveraging the DIP platform and providing a means to demonstrate the benefits of DIP.
Under the Digital Information Platform (DIP) project, NASA is demonstrating collaborative rerouting capabilities from the Airspace Technology Demonstration 2 project using the Collaborative Digital Departure Re-routing tool, with a focus in the D10 TRACON area. By developing the Alternate Route Availability Tool (ARAT), we extend this concept of optimal alternate routes between city pairs within a lightweight capability that will apply NAS-wide. ARAT will connect to DIP and demonstrate its potential to improve air traffic decision making.
The Alternate Route Availability Tool (ARAT) has a market in the aviation community, specifically for airlines as well as Air Traffic Control. Prospective customers in the airline industry include all major commercial (Part 121) airline and air taxi services (Part 135). Other potential customers include companies that market route generation tools.