Software of the Year

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2006 Award Winner

Award Title:

FACET—Future Air Traffic Management (ATM) Concepts Evaluation Tool

Lead NASA Center:

Ames Research Center (ARC)

Case Number:

ARC-14653-1

Summary:

FACET is a flexible software-based simulation environment for exploration, development, and evaluation of advanced Air Traffic Management (ATM) concepts. Examples of concepts studied using FACET are: aircraft self-separation for Free Flight, modeling and prediction of air traffic controller workload, a decision support tool for direct routing, integration of space launch vehicle operations into the U.S. National Airspace System (NAS), and advanced traffic flow management techniques using rerouting, metering and ground delay. FACET models system-wide airspace operations over the contiguous U.S. Airspace. Models (e.g., Center/sector boundaries, airways, locations of navigation aids and airports) are available from databases. Weather models (winds, temperature, bad weather cells, etc.) are also available. FACET models aircraft trajectories using round-earth equations. Aircraft can be flown along either flight plan routes or direct (great circle) routes as they climb, cruise and descend according to their individual aircraft-type performance models. Since this is about to be used by the Federal Aviation Administration for optimally rerouting aircraft during system upsets beginning this fall, the technology has become far more valuable to the Nation.

The Future Air Traffic Management Concepts Evaluation Tool (FACET) models, designs, and operates the large and complex U.S. National Airspace System

Above: The Future Air Traffic Management Concepts Evaluation Tool (FACET) models, designs, and operates
the large and complex U.S. National Airspace System (NAS). It has two primary uses: (1) as a simulation,
modeling, and analysis capability at the national level and (2) as an environment for the development and
evaluation of real-time decision support tools for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the airlines.