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Opinion

Managing the flights of the future

By Luis Rodrigues      

Our research on flight management systems (FMS) uses optimal control techniques to obtain analytic solutions for estimates of the flight speed, flight time and direct operating costs for all types of vehicles to minimize direct operating costs of an airline.

Around the world, airlines are working to manage a tricky-trade-off: fuel consumption versus flight time. To consume less fuel, the airplane has to go slower—but that means flying longer. Flying faster shortens the flight time, but the undesirable side effects are increased fuel consumption and a corresponding increase in emissions to the atmosphere. Photograph by Wikipedia
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Around the world, airlines are working to manage a tricky-trade-off: fuel consumption versus flight time. To consume less fuel, the airplane has to go slower—but that means flying longer. Flying faster shortens the flight time, but the undesirable side effects are increased fuel consumption and a corresponding increase in emissions to the atmosphere. If nothing is done, aircraft emissions are not likely to decrease: less than two years ago, the International Air Transport Association forecasted that passenger demand

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