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Feeder routing for air-to-air refueling operations

Hansknecht, Christoph and Joormann, Imke and Korn, Bernd and Morscheck, Fabian and Stiller, Sebastian (2022) Feeder routing for air-to-air refueling operations. European Journal of Operational Research. Elsevier. doi: 10.1016/j.ejor.2022.04.016. ISSN 0377-2217.

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Official URL: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0377221722003149


With the ever increasing volume of air traffic comes an enormous environmental impact, specifically due to carbon emissions. A promising approach to reduce this impact is the introduction of en route air-to-air refueling, allowing for the design of aircraft with reduced weight and a decreased fuel burn. Aside from the design of aircraft, the key challenge lies in the planning of the refueling operation in order to minimize the fuel burn of the feeder fleet. The air-to-air refueling problem is a variant of a vehicle routing problem in which a fleet of feeders are to perform air-to-air refueling operations for a fixed set of cruisers. In this paper, we devise an IP-based method capable of solving this problem supported by an ODE model of the feeders’ fuel consumption. The algorithmic key to solve the air-to-air refueling problem lies in separating the problem of finding routes serving cruisers and assigning sets of routes to individual feeders. We demonstrate the effectiveness of our methods both on real-world and artificial instances, solving all problems to optimality and significantly outperforming state-of-the-art heuristic methods.

Item URL in elib:https://elib.dlr.de/186279/
Document Type:Article
Title:Feeder routing for air-to-air refueling operations
AuthorsInstitution or Email of AuthorsAuthor's ORCID iDORCID Put Code
Hansknecht, ChristophUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0003-3948-9344UNSPECIFIED
Joormann, ImkeUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0002-0189-0557UNSPECIFIED
Korn, BerndUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0003-3598-8971UNSPECIFIED
Morscheck, FabianUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0002-4655-1057UNSPECIFIED
Stiller, SebastianUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0002-8792-4390UNSPECIFIED
Date:26 April 2022
Journal or Publication Title:European Journal of Operational Research
Refereed publication:Yes
Open Access:No
Gold Open Access:No
In ISI Web of Science:Yes
Keywords:RoutingBranch-and-PriceAir-to-Air RefuelingNP-hardness
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport
HGF - Program:Aeronautics
HGF - Program Themes:Air Transportation and Impact
DLR - Research area:Aeronautics
DLR - Program:L AI - Air Transportation and Impact
DLR - Research theme (Project):L - Air Transport Operations and Impact Assessment
Location: Braunschweig
Institutes and Institutions:Institute of Flight Guidance > Pilot Assistance
Deposited By: Morscheck, Fabian
Deposited On:03 May 2022 12:43
Last Modified:29 Jun 2023 07:23

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