PARTAKE’s main research objective has been to reduce the likelihood of tactical ATC interventions due to aircraft in conflict by identifying interdependent trajectories and determining feasible multi-airport departure configurations that relax them in a TBO framework.


The SESAR ATM master plan recognised that the modernisation of the European ATM system “should seek better knowledge of flights as a whole, as part of a flow within a network”. In fact, it is known that an important limitation of the current system is the loss of effectiveness due to the limited integration between layered planning decision support tools (DST). The current stratified planning approach fragments the ATM system at both functional and operational levels due to the lack of flexible TBO synchronization mechanisms that could deal with a compensation solution taking into account the optimization objectives of each stakeholder subject to infrastructure and security constraints.

The TBO paradigm improves the design of advanced DSTs relying on the new balance between demand and airspace capacity by re-evaluating the number of possible controller interventions that may be required in the future traffic scenario ordered by new cutting-edge procedures such as free flight, ASAS, RPA integration or soft flight level capping restrictions. Therefore, the demand-capacity balance of an airspace extension can be estimated by considering the number of potential upcoming events (such as the loss of safety distances between time-marked concurrent trajectories) that could arise due to scheduled traffic (based on airspace users’ preferences).

PARTAKE proposes a causal model to improve the potential synergies that can be achieved by exploiting to the maximum the gap provided by strategic decision variables (i.e. exit spaces set by ATFM) with tactical decision making at the airport level (i.e. exit sequence preserving the allocated space) and operational decision making at the flight execution level between areas that could affect trajectory compliance due to the close interdependencies between RBTs.

The proposed model formalizes the different events, to simulate and validate the exit time adjustment process that preserves the programmed spaces while relaxing the 4DT interdependencies to mitigate the imbalances between demand and capacity. In addition, it is extended and implemented as a constraint programming model to solve realistic scenarios that interact with SWIM through SOA applications. By means of the distribution of the time margin, the solidity of the different solutions is analyzed. These adjustments are computed in such a way that there is minimal disturbance to land resources, while there is no negative impact on air-side resources.

In summary, the PARTAKE solution is based, in addition to automation principles, on: when is the best time to make a decision; where is the best place to make a decision; and who is the best place to do it in an ATM context. The PARTAKE solution provides a parametric tool adapted to these criteria to identify the problem to be mitigated and the analysis mechanisms to provide the best solution.