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NASA Partners With Airlines to Save Fuel, Reduce Flight Delays

NASA Partners With Airlines to Save Fuel, Reduce Flight Delays

In order to continue developing an air traffic decision-making tool that will save over 24,000 pounds of jet fuel in 2022 for aircraft leaving from Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport and Dallas Love Field Airport, NASA has reached agreements with five major U.S. airlines.

NASA’s Digital Information Platform (DIP) machine-learning tool gave flight controllers at the two Dallas airports the ability to cut down on delays and fuel consumption over the course of 2022. They were able to find chances for more effective, alternate takeoff routes using traffic estimates from the DIP-developed Collaborative Digital Departure Reroute (CDDR) technology, which decreased delays and saved fuel.

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Now, DIP tools will be put to work with five new partner airlines: American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, JetBlue Airways, Southwest Airlines, and United Airlines. Researchers from DIP and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) will evaluate a cloud computing-based version of the CDDR tool as part of five-year NASA Space Act Agreements with these airlines.

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By combining air traffic and airspace limitation data from the FAA with flight-specific surface traffic data from the five airlines and two airports, CDDR seeks to enhance the present air traffic operations at commercial airports. In order to generate traffic predictions about future runway availability and expected departure and arrival times, the programme uses machine learning to this data.

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The five airlines will work with NASA to develop the CDDR tool further and find further possibilities to use data-driven approaches that can enhance flight planning and operations. DIP is a subproject of NASA’s Air Traffic Management (ATM-X) project and is led out of Ames. DIP’s work and partnerships contribute to the agency’s Sustainable Flight National Partnership efforts. 

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