Lightweight Simulation of Air Traffic Control Using Simple Temporal Networks

Russell Knight

Flight simulators are becoming more sophisticated and realistic, and the requirements of those using them are becoming more demanding. Air traffic control simulation for such simulators is now approaching the real problem of air traffic control, where several aircraft need to be scheduled for safe approach and landing or for safe passage through the air space that an air traffic controller is responsible for. Also, the computational resources available to dedicate to air traffic control simulation are sparse, given that most simulations focus on a realistic graphical user interface and aircraft physics modeling. We provide a formulation of the air traffic control problem and a solver for this problem that makes use of temporal constraint networks and simple geometric reasoning. We provide results showing that this approach is practical for realistic simulated problems.

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