Elise Miller-Hooks

A Systems Approach to Updating Routes for In-Flight Aircraft given Unexpected Disruptions

Project 10Inclement weather and other disruptions, such as a security breach at an airport, can lead to reduced landing capacity or complete closure of airports. Weather, as well as excessive air traffic and communications blackout areas caused by equipment failures, can also affect the course of an aircraft while in flight to an airport. Reduction in these airway and landing capacities may make it impossible for airlines to execute planned routes through the National Airspace System (NAS) and may require updates to the course that these aircraft follow.

Air traffic congestion demands on the NAS coupled with the urgency with which such rerouting decisions are made may compromise safety levels. To compensate for a lack of decision support tools, excessively conservative decisions are often made to guarantee that safety levels are maintained. Such conservative decisions result in suboptimal use of the NAS.

This effort focused on the development of optimization algorithms for determining system-wide optimal or near-optimal rerouting strategies for use by in-flight aircraft, where disruptions that lead to reductions in the capacity of the NAS or for landing at airports is considered.

Award Period:
Aug. 2003- Aug. 2006
Source of Funding:
Minta Martin Fellowship, University of Maryland
Total Award Amount:

Project 10


Elise Miller-Hooks, Ph.D.
Bill & Eleanor Hazel Chair in Infrastructure Engineering

Phone: 703.993.1685
Email: miller@gmu.edu

Office: 4614 Nguyen Engineering Building

Sid and Reva Dewberry Department of Civil, Environmental and Infrastructure Engineering
George Mason University
4400 University Drive, MS 6C1
Fairfax, VA 22030


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