NASA Software Leads to Fuel Savings For Airlines

Software developed at NASA’s Ames Research Center is enabling fuel savings for airlines while also increasing their planes’ environmental efficiency.

The Ames Direct-To software is a product of NASA aeronautics research in air traffic management. It enables airlines to save fuel and reduce emissions by automatically identifying flight shortcuts that are wind-favorable and acceptable to air traffic controllers.

It’s already been adopted by the Boeing Company for commercial use. Their offering a new air traffic efficiency service that uses the software.

Project directors say they’ve estimated a potential combined savings of about 900 flying minutes per day for all aircraft using the software. That means a potential savings of tens of thousands of flight minutes per year for a medium-sized airline.