Human factors impact of different ramp controller scheduling advisories for ATD-2 surface metering in a human-in-the-loop simulation

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Conference Proceeding

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A human-in-the-loop (HITL) simulation took place in 2019 at NASA Ames Research Center's Future Flight Central, an airport simulator with a full-scale 360-degree view that showed real-time airport operations at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport (DFW). The HITL was part of the NASA/FAA Airspace Technology Demonstration 2 (ATD-2) project which involves an on-going field demonstration at Charlotte Douglas International Airport (CLT). In the field demonstration, metering on the airport surface takes place with one of the goals being to reduce runway queue length by holding aircraft at the gate during busy times, thereby reducing fuel burn and CO2 emissions. This goal has been successfully accomplished at CLT by showing Ramp Controllers when to release aircraft at the gate so as to reduce aircraft waiting in the queue. Among the questions that the current simulation at DFW was designed to address were, "Which types of advisories to the Ramp Controllers work best, those that show a ±2 minute window for a release time from the gate, or a ±5 minute window for an arrival time at the spot (where Air Traffic Control takes over) or both?" and "How do these different types of advisories affect Ramp Controller workload and situation awareness?" Another question was, “Does a ramp that is less restrictive than the one at CLT affect compliance with these advisories?”


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