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Title: Agent based impact analysis of air traffic management systems
Author: Davies, Gary John
ISNI:       0000 0004 2741 8132
Awarding Body: Queen's University Belfast
Current Institution: Queen's University Belfast
Date of Award: 2012
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Increasing travel demand sees projections of 11.5 million flights in Europe annually by 2016. The current system is not capable of managing these increases, introducing the need for a redevelopment initiative, the Single Sky, to reduce environmental impact, improve efficiency and manage the increased capacity with even better safety. This is a challenging goal as these systems are characteristically complex arising from numerous interacting objects whose behaviour is affected by history or feedback in an open system resulting in emergent, ordered and disordered behaviour through the structure. It is difficult to understand the system behaviour, which is key to modifying, developing and implementing the desired configurations effectively. Ascertaining the behaviour of such systems requires an understanding of the coupling and interdependencies on a system wide scale, which is not available in the traditional approaches to ATM system analysis. This research addresses the need by developing a simple, inexpensive, non data intensive, qualitative analysis for identifying these relationships and interdependencies through a technique of invoking a change in the system architecture and measuring the deviation experienced by the other elements, with the deviation referred to as impact. An agent based modelling approach was identified as the most suitable and the method was therefore implemented in an agent based environment. The model was verified in a system of 21 airports from the UK and Ireland and a user defined number of flights with at least a departure or arrival airport within the system. Critical review and validation of the model is performed using a combination of scenarios comprising real world events. System analysis and changes in protocol were used to identify phenomenon such as impact propagation and absorption. The combination of impact analysis, approach and the model is shown to provide a simple means for ascertaining the relationships and interdependencies as impact propagates through the system due to aircraft moving through the operational hierarchy. The research identifies the applicability of the technique toward the analysis of other complex systems including ecosystems and financial markets.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available