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Development of a wake vortex spacing system for airport capacity enhancement and delay reduction

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2 Author(s)
Hinton, D.A. ; NASA Langley Res. Center, Hampton, VA, USA ; O'Connor, C.J.

The Terminal Area Productivity project has developed the technologies required (weather measurement, wake prediction, and wake measurement) to determine the aircraft spacing needed to prevent wake vortex encounters in various weather conditions. The system performs weather measurements, predicts bounds on wake vortex behavior in those conditions, derives safe wake spacing criteria, and validates the wake predictions with wake vortex measurements. System performance to date indicates that the potential runway arrival rate increase with AVOSS, considering common path effects and ATC delivery variance, is 5% to 12% depending on the ratio of large and heavy aircraft. The concept demonstration system, using early generation algorithms and minimal optimization, is performing the wake predictions with adequate robustness such that only 4 “hard exceedances” have been observed in 1235 wake validation cases. This performance demonstrates the feasibility of predicting wake behavior bounds with multiple uncertainties present, including the unknown aircraft weight and speed, weather persistence between the wake prediction and the observations, and the location of the weather sensors several kilometers from the approach location. A concept for the use of the AVOSS system for parallel runway operations has been suggested, and an initial study at the JFK International Airport suggests that a simplified AVOSS system can be successfully operated using only a single lidar as both the weather sensor and the wake validation instrument. Such a self-contained AVOSS would be suitable for wake separation close to the airport, as is required for parallel approach concepts such as SOIA

Published in:

Digital Avionics Systems Conference, 2000. Proceedings. DASC. The 19th  (Volume:1 )

Date of Conference:

2000