Initial Assessment of Wind Forecasts for Airport Acceptance Rate (AAR) and Ground Delay Program (GDP) Planning

The planning and execution of the Airport Acceptance Rate (AAR) for major metroplex airports is a complex and critical function of traffic managers in the National Airspace System (NAS). Despite the importance of AAR planning, traffic managers currently have no widely available decision support to provide guidance for runway selection and the determination of a sustainable AAR. The AAR Decision Support Capability (AARDSC), currently under development as part of the Collaborative Air Traffic Management Technology Work Package 4 (CATMT WP4), will provide such guidance. This report provides an initial analysis of the impacts of surface winds and winds aloft on the key factors associated with the AAR (the selection of runway configuration and aircraft ground speed and spacing on final approach) and the capabilities of currently available weather forecasts to accurately predict those impacts. The report was limited in scope by the schedule and available resources, and is intended as a foundation for a comprehensive forecast assessment in follow-on work. Surface wind forecasts from the Terminal Aerodrome Forecast (TAF) and numerical prediction models (the High Resolution Rapid Refresh [HRRR], Rapid Refresh [RAP] and Rapid Update Cycle [RUC], collectively described as “MODEL”) were compared to observed winds gathered from METAR reports at Newark International Airport (EWR). TAF and METAR were compared for 639 days of operations from 2011–2013. MODEL forecasts and METAR were compared for 21 days of operation, 16 of which had Traffic Management Initiatives (TMI) in place to mitigate adverse weather impacts. Winds aloft were translated into several wind impact metrics. The impacts of winds aloft forecast errors were evaluated by comparing impact metrics calculated from MODEL forecasts with those calculated from analysis fields for the 21 case days. Forecasts were evaluated at horizons of 2, 4, 6, and 8 hours.

Language

  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Digital/other
  • Edition: Project Report
  • Features: Appendices; Figures; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 64p

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01518934
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: ATC-414
  • Contract Numbers: FA8721-05-C-0002
  • Files: TRIS, ATRI, USDOT
  • Created Date: Mar 12 2014 10:40AM