Mosaic Situation Viewer, 24/7 Airline Situational Awareness
Running an airline operations hub efficiently is extremely complex. Many technologies aiming to optimize air traffic flow in the United States undergo decades of software development funded by NASA and FAA. These comprehensive efforts result in sophisticated systems designed to support air traffic control, the necessary core of air traffic management, but airlines are often an afterthought. Airlines are forced to choose between clunky, outdated tools with a fraction of the ATC system capabilities or expensive, overly complex commercial applications that attempt to replicate ATC systems but are slow to innovate and don’t provide sufficient situational awareness.
what we did
In collaboration with our launch customers, Mosaic Software, a leader in geospatial displays and data analysis, adapted a complex desktop application developed over years of NASA R&D and experimental use with major air carriers to become a web-based application, allowing us to quickly and easily customize the tool for our clients. Mosaic Situation Viewer acquires, parses and fuses multiple FAA data feeds that fall within two main groups – the first is airborne data used to monitor aircraft flying overhead; the second is ground surveillance data used to track aircraft and other support vehicles moving about the airport surface. This complex fusion and matching enables Mosaic Situation Viewer to show an airport-centric view of the airport surface that can be zoomed out to display all flights that originated from or are planned to arrive at the airport, filtering out the rest of air traffic. More importantly, the tool incorporates data-driven algorithms that accurately predict when flights will arrive or depart from an airport, providing the airline with a planning horizon that supports proactive decision-making such as how to sequence flights moving from the gate through the movement area and how to minimize or eliminate taxiway congestion.
Mosaic Situation Viewer has proven to be an invaluable, cost-effective resource to clients including FedEx, Delta, and Hawaiian Airlines, where it is deployed at major hubs. Mosaic Software has worked with airline staff and air traffic control at each location to adapt its algorithms to specific airport characteristics and operational procedures. This collaborative adaptation process ensures that our algorithms accurately capture and predict operations at an airport, and facilitates requests for customizations. The Viewer is a huge step toward Collaborative Decision Making (CDM) as it allows multiple stakeholders to have a common view of the situation and the near future. Staff ranging from ramp control coordinators to traffic managers to ground service crews can see the current situation and a preview of the next few hours. In short, Mosaic Situation Viewer has become essential to daily operations.