The relationship between aviation and corporate networks.

Frankfurt von Himmel 3

A new paper from the Journal of Transport Georgraphy explores the relationship between aviation and corporate networks. Is it just coincidence that cities like London, New York, Frankfurt, Hong Kong, Dubai, and Chicago have major air traffic and major corporations? According to the authors of "Exploring the co-evolution of the geographies of air transport aviation and corporate networks", there is:

In this paper we aim to contribute to the literature on the empirical parallels between urban hierarchies and the transport networks supporting and/or reflecting these hierarchies. We adopt a stochastic actor-based modeling framework to analyze the co-evolution of the world city hierarchy and global air passenger networks between 2000 and 2010/2011. The data are drawn from an inventory of the location strategies of globalized service firms across world cities and the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO). Major findings include (1) exogenous effects, such as the impact of economic development and regionality; (2) endogenous micro-level effects producing macro-level patterns, such as preferential attachment processes; and (3) the two-way impact of both networks. (i.e., cities that are well connected in the aviation network tend to attract more major offices of globalized service firms, while the co-presence of major offices of globalized service firms in cities in turn stimulates the development of aviation connections between them).

The full article can be found online here

Queueing Models for Trajectory-Based Aircraft Operations

Control Tower

ITS Berkeley's Tasos Nikoleris and Mark Hansen have an article in the current issue of Transportation Science. "Queueing Models for Trajectory-Based Aircraft Operations".

This paper develops a queueing model for aircraft arrivals at a single server under trajectory-based flight operations, which are expected to prevail in the Next Generation Air Transportation System. Aircraft are assigned scheduled times of arrival at a server, which they meet with some normally distributed stochastic error. The Clark approximation method is employed to estimate expected queueing delays, and it is shown, through comparison with simulation, that the method yields very accurate estimates. Exact results are derived for a special case in which aircraft are metered into a capacity-constrained area with constant excess time separation between them. This allows analysis of the tradeoff between the “stochastic delay” that results from imperfect adherence to metered times of arrival and the additional “deterministic delay” from metering at a headway above the minimum required.

The article can be found online.

Friday Seminar - Anthony Evans on Simulating Airline Operational Responses to Environmental Constraints


This week’s Friday TRANSOC Seminar has Anthony Evans, Postdoctoral Fellow, NASA Ames Research Center, presenting “Airline Operational Responses to Environmental Constraints.”

Significant growth is anticipated in global air transportation over the coming decades, which is expected to have local and global environmental impacts. This presentation describes a model that predicts airline flight network, frequency and fleet changes in response to policy measures that aim to reduce the environmental impact of aviation. Such airline operational responses to policy measures are not considered by most integrated aviation-environment modelling tools. By not modelling these effects the capability of the air transport system to adjust under changing conditions is neglected, resulting in the forecasting of potentially misleading system and local responses to constraints.


Friday Seminar: Mazyar Zeinali on Commercial Aviation and Climate Change

Airbus A380-800

This week's TRANSOC Friday Seminar is Mazyar Zeinali from the International Council on Clean Transportation presenting "Commercial Aviation and Climate Change: The Role of Technology."

The environmental impact of aviation has been of concern for several decades including specific concerns such as local air quality, impacts on Earth's protective ozone layer, and aircraft induced cloudiness. However, with the 1999 seminal publication by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) entitled 'Aviation and the Global Atmosphere', significant concern has arisen both in aviation climate change impact and mitigation possibilities. To quantify expected return from future technology implementation (near to mid term), the International Civil Aviation Organizational (ICAO) commissioned and published a study conducted by a panel of independent experts (IEs). The IE technology scenarios included returns under typical/continuation of current business-as-usual practices and also accelerated implementation under added future regulatory pressure. The ICCT was a contributing organization to this ICAO study and Dr. Zeinali will present his findings and interpretations for specific technological packages envisioned by the panel and efficiency gains from implementing technology in tighter aircraft designs, better matching operational norms and patterns.

The seminar will take place October 7 from 4-5 PM in 406 Davis Hall. Cookie Hour will be at 3:30, as usual, in the library. 

FAA shutdown continues.

In the wake of Congress' failure to pass FAA Reauthorization, the US has entered the fifth day of the FAA shutdown. The economic toll is already being calculated. Secretary LaHood urged Congress to look at the larger implications of the FAA shutdown:

Here are the facts. At a time when unemployment in the construction sector is in the double digits, Congress' inaction has forced the FAA to issue stop-work orders on dozens of control tower construction projects already underway, from Wilkes-Barre to Kalamazoo, from Gulfport to Las Vegas and from Oakland to Palm Springs.

The FAA was also on the verge of selecting contractors to build new towers in Cleveland and Fort Lauderdale. These projects are now at a standstill and could be forfeited altogether if this situation continues too much longer. Even worse, $2.5 billion slated for additional airport construction is sitting idle rather than paying salaries.

Furthermore, Congress' irresponsibility has left the FAA with no choice but to put approximately 4,000 public servants on unpaid leave in 35 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. This includes many of the agency's top engineers, scientists, planners, analysts and program managers.

The ripple effects of this crisis will be more destructive still. Middle-class households won't receive paychecks while their bills mount. Contractors will stop buying supplies. Small-business owners will buy fewer goods.

With our fragile economy teetering, these are blows America simply can't afford.

While Congress hasn't budged on the FAA Reauthorization, nevermind the Debt Ceiling, they are demanding that the airlines stop pocketing extra fares.  


LaHood Presses for FAA Reauthorization

Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood is pushing Congress to extend the FAA's authorization which expires at midnight tonight, July 22. More than $600,000,000 in airport construction projects are at stake, and about 4,000 FAA employees will be furloughed beginning tomorrow. The dispute over FAA's reauthorization mirrors the larger fight over surface transportation reauthorization which has the US Chamber of Congress, usually a staunch ally of the GOP, joining with the AFL-CIO to advocate for greater funding.

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