Airspace Concept Evaluation System (aces) Capabilities December 5, 2008

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Airspace Concept Evaluation System (ACES) Capabilities

December 5, 2008

Based on CDRL 19 (see Reference)

Raytheon ACES Team

1001 Boston Post Road
Marlborough, MA 01752-3789



2 Modeling Overview 4

2.1 Current Functionality 7

2.2 Planned Capabilities 69

Appendix A: BADA Updated aircraft models 195



Figure 2 1 ACES Simplified Terminal Airspace Network 14

Figure 2 2 ACES Multiple Airport Simplified Terminal Airspace Network 15


[1] CTOD 7.36 ACES Modeling Systems Requirements Document, 28 August 2004

[2] CDRL 17 Airspace Concept Evaluation System (ACES) Software User Manual, 31 October 2005

[3] CDRL 19 System/Subsystem Design Description (SSDD) / Software Design Document (SDD) – Appendix A.3 – Terminal Area Operations, 29 September 2006

[4] EDD Swappable Trajectory Generator-SCR 1326, 13 October 2008

[5] EDD Dynamic Sector Capacity-SCR 1277, 17 June 2008

[6] EDD CNS Plug-ins 2.0-SCR 1289, 9 June 2008

[7] EDD Surface Traffic Limitations Enhancement-SCR 1288, 3 June 2008

[8] EDD Traffic Management Advisor-SCR 1233, 26 September 2008

[9] EDD Traffic Management Advisor-SCR 1037 V2.1, 31 October 2007 (ACES-X)

[10] ACES to MPAS ICD, 8 September 2006

[11] ACES STLE User Guide-SCR 1288, 3 June 2008


Increasing air traffic impacts passengers and airport operations. It results in airport congestion, lost revenues, longer delays for passengers, and shorter decision times for air traffic controllers. Researchers and planners are working on solutions to the nation’s air space capacity problems. The Airspace Conception Evaluation System (ACES) provides them with a tool to assess the system wide impacts of new aviation concepts and technologies. ACES simulates the complex interplay of the air traffic system using a software architecture based on agents. These are individual assemblies of mathematical models designed to emulate the functionality of air space entities using detailed information about the dynamic evolution of the traffic in the system. Researchers can evaluate how the National Air Space (NAS) will handle future flight demand and how the system will respond do disruptions such as inclement weather. ACES extraordinary flexibility allows the researcher to study the system-wide benefits and impacts of new ideas.

This document is intended to provide a description and top-level capabilities of the NAS models of the Airspace Concept Evaluation System (ACES) Build 6. For the purpose of this document, these builds represent the main copies. Other capabilities explored/developed in parallel in external copies are planned to be integrated into main builds in due time. This document is intended to evolve, incorporating new capabilities as built.

ACES is a combined architecture and modeling toolkit that provides the structure and NAS modeling capabilities to create a variety of simulations tailored to the researcher's specific needs. The purpose of this document is to provide an overview of the capabilities and NAS functionality enabled by the models included in ACES Build 6.

2Modeling Overview

From a user’s perspective (refer to Figure 1), the ACES modeling system provides the following capabilities:

  1. Day-in-the-NAS - The models support a simulation run that emulates an entire day-in-the-NAS operation. This provides a timeframe to study the interactions among the different NAS participants as they interact over the course of an entire day. How problems propagate through the NAS and how the NAS recovers also requires the ability to emulate the entire NAS for an extended period of time. The tool provides knobs for setting up a scenario of interest for studying a particular aspect of the NAS by focusing on a higher level of detail of the aspect, or the overall network effect of the entire NAS in a lower level of detail, or a combination of both.

  2. Gate-to-Gate - The models support a NAS-wide, gate-to-gate simulation. The models utilize various levels of fidelity to provide NAS-wide simulation. The simulation tracks each individual aircraft throughout the NAS. In the en route environment, high fidelity trajectory modeling along with TFM and ATC capabilities combine to provide a medium fidelity emulation of the en route domain. Traffic flow modeling in the terminal area and at the airports, along with basic models of the Airline Operations Centers (AOCs) and the Air Traffic Control System Command Center (ARTSCC) provide the necessary elements to emulate traffic flow across the NAS.

  3. Traffic Flow - The models emulate the Traffic Flow Management interactions of the current NAS environment. This build provides models for the traffic flow components of each ATC domain along with the influence of the ATCSCC and the AOCs. This provides the basic modeling necessary to show the propagation of delay throughout the NAS and the interactions between the airlines, the ATCSCC, and the various Air Traffic Control domains in dealing with capacity limitations.

  4. NAS Metrics - The models support the collection of NAS-wide metrics for flight time delay, departure delay, fuel costs, and controller workload measures. Research using this tool is expected to help answer the cost and benefits of various approaches to addressing our NAS system imbalances in demand, capacity, and safety areas.

Figure 1 - ACES Model Overview

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