Evaluating the Efficiency of a Small Aircraft Transportation System Network Using Planning and Simulation Models (2006)

This paper presents an evaluation scheme to determine network efficiency parameters (level of service) for an ondemand air transportation service using NASA's Small Aircraft Transportation System. The analysis employs a large-scale transportation planning model (TSAM) and an operational Monte Carlo network simulation model (MCATS) to study supply and demand network equilibrium conditions for on-demand services. The level of service is an important factor in determining the number of travelers who would use any transportation system including on-demand air taxi services proposed in the SATS Program. In the present version of the Transportation Systems Analysis Model (TSAM) developed by the Air Transportation Systems Laboratory at Virginia Tech (Trani.et al (2003)) it is assumed that SATS services are available within a prescribed accommodation time period (typically one or two hours). This factor is modeled as a schedule delay parameter to account for network inefficiencies. It is also assumed that the cost of using SATS is fixed throughout the network. A life cycle cost model has determined the cost of on-demand services using very light jets to vary from $1.50 to $2.00 per passenger mile.
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