Aiplane Boarding

Mathematical models, algorithms, and complexity for a minimized boarding time for passenger airplanes due to an optimal passenger boarding order.

Abstract

It is folklore knowledge in the aviation industry that a passenger airplane can only generate revenue while in the air, as ground handling operations and the time a plane spends, e.g., at the gate effectively cost airlines money. Furthermore, a reduced boarding time is also beneficial for passengers and airport operators. For passengers, it results in reduced average individual boarding times, and airport operators are possibly able to offer more flights per day per gate. Thus, airlines wish to minimize the turn-around times of their airplanes, i.e., the times between the last landing and the next takeoff. Although there are many steps involved in turning around an airplane, passenger boarding is one of the steps that most affect the turn-around time.

In this project, we study the process of boarding through a jet-bridge, where each passenger has a preassigned seat. Our explicit goal is to minimize the overall boarding time, where we focus on the time elapsing between the first passenger entering the airplane cabin and the last passenger sitting down on his/her seat.

Projectinfo

Duration:
ongoing
Involved:
Contact:

Instances for the Airplane Boarding Problem

  • Passenger-dependent moving times and passenger-dependent settle-in times
  • Constant moving time for all passengers and passenger-dependent settle-in times
  • Passenger-dependent moving times and constant settle-in time for all passengers

Results for the Airplane Boarding Problem

Passenger-dependent moving times and passenger-dependent settle-in times

Constant moving time for all passengers and passenger-dependent settle-in times

Passenger-dependent moving times and constant settle-in time for all passengers

Publications

Willamowski, F.J.L. and Tillmann, A.M.
Minimizing Airplane Boarding Time. repORt 2019—56, Lehrstuhl für Operations Research, RWTH Aachen University, November 2019.