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AI enabling technologies: a survey

Summary

Artificial Intelligence (AI) has the opportunity to revolutionize the way the United States Department of Defense (DoD) and Intelligence Community (IC) address the challenges of evolving threats, data deluge, and rapid courses of action. Developing an end-to-end artificial intelligence system involves parallel development of different pieces that must work together in order to provide capabilities that can be used by decision makers, warfighters and analysts. These pieces include data collection, data conditioning, algorithms, computing, robust artificial intelligence, and human-machine teaming. While much of the popular press today surrounds advances in algorithms and computing, most modern AI systems leverage advances across numerous different fields. Further, while certain components may not be as visible to end-users as others, our experience has shown that each of these interrelated components play a major role in the success or failure of an AI system. This article is meant to highlight many of these technologies that are involved in an end-to-end AI system. The goal of this article is to provide readers with an overview of terminology, technical details and recent highlights from academia, industry and government. Where possible, we indicate relevant resources that can be used for further reading and understanding.
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Summary

Artificial Intelligence (AI) has the opportunity to revolutionize the way the United States Department of Defense (DoD) and Intelligence Community (IC) address the challenges of evolving threats, data deluge, and rapid courses of action. Developing an end-to-end artificial intelligence system involves parallel development of different pieces that must work together...

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Cognitive workload and visual attention analyses of the air traffic control Tower Flight Data Manager (TFDM) prototype demonstration

Published in:
HFES 2012, Human Factors and Ergonomics Society 56th Annual Mtg., 22-26 October 2012.

Summary

This paper presents two methods of analyzing air traffic controller activity: cognitive workload measurement through the novel comparison of controller-pilot verbal communications, and visual attention quantification through manual eye gaze analysis. These analyses were performed as part of an evaluation of the Tower Flight Data Manager (TFDM) prototype system. Cognitive workload analyses revealed that, when comparing participant controllers utilizing TFDM to a control group utilizing existing air traffic control (ATC) equipment, participants issued commands sooner than the control, and thus were perceived to have a lower workload. While visual attention data were not available for the control group, analyses of participant gaze data revealed 81.9% of time was spent in a head-down position, and 17.2% of time was spent head-up. Results are related back to system inefficiencies to find potential areas of improvement in design.
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Summary

This paper presents two methods of analyzing air traffic controller activity: cognitive workload measurement through the novel comparison of controller-pilot verbal communications, and visual attention quantification through manual eye gaze analysis. These analyses were performed as part of an evaluation of the Tower Flight Data Manager (TFDM) prototype system. Cognitive...

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Dallas/Fort Worth field demonstration #2 (DFW-2) final report for Tower Flight Data Manager (TFDM)

Summary

The Tower Flight Data Manager (TFDM) is the next generation air traffic control tower (ATCT) information system that integrates surveillance, flight data, and other sources, which enables advanced decision support tools (DSTs) to improve departure and arrival efficiency and reduce fuel burn at the airport. TFDM was exercised as a prototype installed at the Dallas / Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) during a two-week demonstration in the spring of 2011 termed DFW-2. MIT Lincoln Laboratory conducted this demonstration for the FAA in coordination with DFW air traffic control (ATC) and the DFW airport authority. The objective of this TFDM field demonstration was to validate the operational suitability and refine production system requirements of the Tower Information Display System (TIDS) surface surveillance display and Flight Data Manager (FDM) electronic flight data display and to evaluate the first iteration of the Supervisor Display and DSTs. These objectives were met during the two-week field demonstration. Results indicated that the TIDS and FDM exhibited capabilities considered operationally suitable for the tower as an advisory system and as a primary means for control given surface surveillance that is approved for operational use. Human factors data indicated that TIDS and FDM could be beneficial. The prototype Supervisor Display and DSTs met a majority of the technical performance criteria, but fewer than half of the human factors success criteria were met. As this was the first iteration of the Supervisor Display and DST capabilities, subsequent prototype iterations to achieve the target concept of operations, functionality and information presentation with accompanying field demonstrations to evaluate these honed capabilities were recommended and expected. FLM/TMC feedback will help refine subsequent system design.
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Summary

The Tower Flight Data Manager (TFDM) is the next generation air traffic control tower (ATCT) information system that integrates surveillance, flight data, and other sources, which enables advanced decision support tools (DSTs) to improve departure and arrival efficiency and reduce fuel burn at the airport. TFDM was exercised as a...

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The Tower Flight Data Manager prototype system

Published in:
DASC 2011, 30th IEEE/AIAA Digital Avionics Systems Conference, 16-20 October 2011, pp. 2C5.

Summary

The Tower Flight Data Manager (TFDM) will serve as the next generation air traffic control tower automation platform for surface and local airspace operations. TFDM provides three primary enhancements over current systems: consolidation of diverse data and information sources into a single platform; electronic data exchange, including flight data entries, within and outside the tower cab; and a suite of decision support capabilities leveraging TFDM's access to external data sources and systems. This paper describes a TFDM prototype system that includes integrated surveillance, flight data, and decision support display components. Enhancements in airport configuration management, runway assignment, taxi routing, sequencing and scheduling, and departure route assurance are expected to yield significant benefits in delay reduction, fuel savings, additional capacity, improved access, enhanced safety, and reduced environmental impact. Data are provided on system performance and air traffic controller acceptance from simulation studies and a preliminary field demonstration at Dallas / Ft. Worth International Airport.
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Summary

The Tower Flight Data Manager (TFDM) will serve as the next generation air traffic control tower automation platform for surface and local airspace operations. TFDM provides three primary enhancements over current systems: consolidation of diverse data and information sources into a single platform; electronic data exchange, including flight data entries...

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A field demonstration of the air traffic control Tower Flight Data Manager prototype

Published in:
HFES 2011, Human Factors and Ergonomics Society 55th Annual Mtg., 19-23 September 2011, p. 61-65.

Summary

The development and evaluation process of the Tower Flight Data Manager prototype at Dallas Ft. Worth airport is described. Key results from the first field evaluation are presented, including lessons learned about making electronic flight information acceptable to controllers. Iteration of the field evaluation methods are discussed for practitioner benefit.
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Summary

The development and evaluation process of the Tower Flight Data Manager prototype at Dallas Ft. Worth airport is described. Key results from the first field evaluation are presented, including lessons learned about making electronic flight information acceptable to controllers. Iteration of the field evaluation methods are discussed for practitioner benefit.

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Concept of operations for the Integrated Departure Route Planning (IDRP) tool

Published in:
MIT Lincoln Laboratory Report ATC-379

Summary

A concept of operations for the Integrated Departure Route Planner (IDRP) tool is proposed to address issues in the area of departure route management. By combining information about weather and departure demand, IDRP can both identify potential demand/capacity imbalances and recommend a rerouting option, if appropriate. To effectively implement IDRP into the operational environment, a twophase approach is suggested. The first phase appends IDRP functionality onto the CIWS/RAPT platform, combining departure demand information with the convective weather information, creating a live prototype. This initial phase allows a gradual introduction of functionality into an existing display and enables the gathering of operational data to appropriately evolve IDRP to phase 2. The second phase involves introducing airline route preferences, along with any operational improvements discovered during the initial phase.
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Summary

A concept of operations for the Integrated Departure Route Planner (IDRP) tool is proposed to address issues in the area of departure route management. By combining information about weather and departure demand, IDRP can both identify potential demand/capacity imbalances and recommend a rerouting option, if appropriate. To effectively implement IDRP...

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Uses for field communication data in designing air traffic management decision support

Published in:
10th Conf. on Naturalistic Decision Making, 31 May 2011.

Summary

In this paper, example uses of field communication data are provided and how these data impact the evolution of the Route Availability Planning Tool (RAPT) for air traffic management is introduced. Simple communications analyses are provided that illustrate how communications can be used to improve what decision support is provided, who it is provided to, and in what context to present the support. Communications data is also shown to aid in contextualizing the decision support to better fit within the decision support framework in existence, which is critical to the success of situation awareness systems.
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Summary

In this paper, example uses of field communication data are provided and how these data impact the evolution of the Route Availability Planning Tool (RAPT) for air traffic management is introduced. Simple communications analyses are provided that illustrate how communications can be used to improve what decision support is provided...

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Field & (data) stream: a method for functional evolution of the Air Traffic Management Route Availability Planning Tool (RAPT)

Published in:
HFES 2010, Proc. of the 54th Human Factors and Ergonomics Society Annual Mtg., 27 September 2010, pp. 104-108.

Summary

A method coupling field evaluation with operations data analysis is presented as an effective means to functionally evolve a decision support system. The case study used to illustrate this method is the evaluation of the Route Availability Planning Tool (RAPT), a decision support tool to improve departure efficiency in convective weather in New York air traffic facilities. It was only through a combination of quantitative performance data analysis and field observations to identify key elements of the decision making process that the designers were able to determine the most critical departure management decision requiring support, leading to significant improvements in departure efficiency.
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Summary

A method coupling field evaluation with operations data analysis is presented as an effective means to functionally evolve a decision support system. The case study used to illustrate this method is the evaluation of the Route Availability Planning Tool (RAPT), a decision support tool to improve departure efficiency in convective...

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Traffic Management Advisor (TMA) weather integration

Published in:
MIT Lincoln Laboratory Report ATC-364

Summary

TCAS behavior in New England airspace is being monitored and analyzed, making use of an omni-directional 1030/1090 MHz receiver. The receiver system, located in Lexington, MA, and operated by M.I.T. Lincoln Laboratory, is used to record Resolution Advisories (RAs). Omni-directional receptions make it possible to examine the air-to-air messages exchanged between aircraft for coordination of RAs. Omni-directional reception rates are also being studied. THe results indicated the percentage of aircraft that are TCAS equipped and the percentage of received signals that originate from TCAS and other systems. A third aspect of the program evaluates the availablity of 1090 MHz Extended Squitter data for use in collision avoidance systems. Data is recorded continuously, and the busiest periods are selected for focused attention.
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Summary

TCAS behavior in New England airspace is being monitored and analyzed, making use of an omni-directional 1030/1090 MHz receiver. The receiver system, located in Lexington, MA, and operated by M.I.T. Lincoln Laboratory, is used to record Resolution Advisories (RAs). Omni-directional receptions make it possible to examine the air-to-air messages exchanged...

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Traffic Management Advisor (TMA) -- weather integration

Published in:
14th Conf. on Aviaton, Range, and Aerospace Meteorology, ARAM, 16-21 January 2010.

Summary

Time-based flow metering (TBFM) of traffic to capacity-constrained areas such as airport runways and arrival fixes is considered a key element of the Next Generation (NextGEN) Air Transportation System operational concept for managing high density air traffic. The principal operational TBFM system today is the Traffic Management Advisor (TMA). TMA is used to optimize the flow of aircraft through various control points (e.g., arrival fixes, final approach fixes, and runway thresholds) so as to maximize airspace capacity without compromising safety. TMA makes continuous predictions of aircraft Estimated Time of Arrivals (ETAs) at various metering points along the flight's trajectory. Scheduling algorithms use the ETAs to compute Scheduled Times of Arrival (STAs) for each aircraft to specific scheduling points. The desired change in aircraft arrival time to the meter fix is provided to en route controllers who then accomplish speed and/or trajectory changes such that the plane passes over the arrival fix at the desired time. The required arrival fix time adjustment is continually updated as the plane proceeds to the arrival fix to provide closed loop control. During non-convective weather, TMA usage has resulted in increased capacity, reduced aircraft fuel burn, and decreased delay. If significant convective weather is present, the TMA software currently still assumes that an aircraft will fly the normal fair weather trajectory to a metering fix. However, if an aircraft deviates around a storm, the flying time to a metering point will generally be different from the fair weather flight time. Therefore, the TMA ETAs will be in error. Currently, the TMA usage is often halted during convective weather events because the arrival time adjustments provided to the controllers may be unmanageable or in error. A study is underway to determine the potential benefits derived from various approaches to integrating weather information from the Corridor Integrated Weather System (CIWS) with TMA. Our focus is on near term weather-TMA integration capabilities that would provide enhanced decision support for the operational community that is successfully utilizing TMA in non-severe weather and/or seeking to increase its operational utility in severe weather. As part of this study, and in conjunction with case study analyses of TMA actions and air traffic operations during convective weather, Subject Matter Experts (SME) from the National TMA Workgroup and select FAA facilities were interviewed to determine TMA fair-weather practices and to identify current TMA capabilities and limitations during weather impact events. The SMEs were also asked to prioritize TMA weather integration needs and to discuss specific weather integration options for the TMA displays. Real-time observations of TMA operations during convective weather were also conducted at Atlanta (ZTL), Boston (ZBW), and Chicago (ZAU) Air Route Traffic Control Centers (ARTCC) to examine (a) the common TMA control actions executed to meter flows during adverse weather, (b) when and why the TBFM becomes unusable during convective weather, and (c) which approaches to providing integrated weather-TMA information would most effectively extend the current TMA capabilities and increase ATM efficiency. The paper will describe initial results of the study including specific options for TMA-CIWS integration and the anticipated operational benefits for these options.
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Summary

Time-based flow metering (TBFM) of traffic to capacity-constrained areas such as airport runways and arrival fixes is considered a key element of the Next Generation (NextGEN) Air Transportation System operational concept for managing high density air traffic. The principal operational TBFM system today is the Traffic Management Advisor (TMA). TMA...

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