We present a methodology to estimate the impacts of volcanic ash dispersal on civil aviation and a software tool aimed at assisting air traffic management in the event of ash-contaminated airspace. The tool merges atmospheric dispersal model forecasts with air traffic data in a map-based platform to produce tables and maps showing potentially affected airports, flights and airspace sectors. Impacts can be estimated based on user-defined ash concentration thresholds, or on the amount of ash potentially ingested by airplanes flying through diluted ash clouds. The impact can be assessed on single Flight Level (FL) slabs, or across the whole vertical airspace. The procedure is automated within a Geographical Information System (GIS). For illustrative purposes, we estimate the potential impacts on the European air traffic of an eruption from Katla volcano in Iceland, assuming a "worst-case" meteorological scenario. We compare the capabilities of the tool with those of similar existing software and justify our design choices. Finally, we discuss the use of the tool in current and future air traffic management strategies during explosive volcanic eruptions.

A GIS-based tool to support air traffic management during explosive volcanic eruptions

Scaini C.
;
2014-01-01

Abstract

We present a methodology to estimate the impacts of volcanic ash dispersal on civil aviation and a software tool aimed at assisting air traffic management in the event of ash-contaminated airspace. The tool merges atmospheric dispersal model forecasts with air traffic data in a map-based platform to produce tables and maps showing potentially affected airports, flights and airspace sectors. Impacts can be estimated based on user-defined ash concentration thresholds, or on the amount of ash potentially ingested by airplanes flying through diluted ash clouds. The impact can be assessed on single Flight Level (FL) slabs, or across the whole vertical airspace. The procedure is automated within a Geographical Information System (GIS). For illustrative purposes, we estimate the potential impacts on the European air traffic of an eruption from Katla volcano in Iceland, assuming a "worst-case" meteorological scenario. We compare the capabilities of the tool with those of similar existing software and justify our design choices. Finally, we discuss the use of the tool in current and future air traffic management strategies during explosive volcanic eruptions.
Air traffic management
Impact assessment
Map-based tool
Response strategies
Volcanic ash
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.14083/15155
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