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CAASD

The Center for Advanced Aviation System Development helps ensure safe, secure, equitable, and efficient solutions across the spectrum of transportation systems.

Shaping the future of aerospace and transportation

MITRE’s Center for Advanced Aviation System Development (CAASD) is sponsored by the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and has been its mission partner for over 60 years. 

By serving as a hub for collaboration across global aviation stakeholders, we ensure the FAA, international civil aviation authorities, civil aviation regulators, airport operators, airspace users and other aviation organizations are united in their efforts to maintain the safest, most efficient aerospace system in the world. And we bring that same lens to other transportation systems—from highways and railways to maritime channels and space.

Our partnership with the FAA began with the creation of a civilian airspace that evolved into today’s National Airspace System and became the basis for numerous, notable advances in aviation safety and efficiency. Today, the U.S. has the busiest, most complex, and safest airspace in the world, in part due to our work. 

For example, our work includes the Traffic Collision Avoidance System (TCAS), a nationally implemented on-board air traffic management system. MITRE also helped develop Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B), which enabled the shift from a radar-based surveillance system to one where aircraft transmit their locations and speed data to air traffic control centers as well as directly to other nearby pilots. 

Additionally, MITRE hosts the Aviation Safety Information Analysis and Sharing (ASIAS) initiative, which collects and aggregates data sets from the FAA and public sources, as well as proprietary airline and manufacturer safety data. Our analysts identify safety trends and help assess the impact of changes in the aviation operating environment through predictive, integrated, and advanced analytics, driving accident rates lower and enabling innovative new operations.

We’re now taking that model and applying it to other modes of transportation, including highway safety, in an initiative called PARTS—Partnership for Analytics Research in Traffic Safety—which includes government, industry, and academic stakeholders. This transfer of knowledge from one domain to another is a hallmark of MITRE’s federally funded research and development centers.

As we look to the future, we will continue to play a critical role in anticipating, innovating, and solving hard challenges that come with increasing congestion and complexity in our skies. Working with government and industry, we’re creating standards, operational principles, and frameworks that support the burgeoning commercial space industry, new entrants, and uncrewed vehicle operations. We use our laboratories, modeling and simulation expertise, and analytic capabilities to evaluate concepts and improvements to current and future systems and operations—in the U.S. and globally, such as at our research facility in Singapore

Our work has contributed to the significant improvement of commercial and general aviation safety and civil-military integration during the past two decades. Aerospace and transportation are critical to our global economy, and we’re working to keep passengers and goods safe—from surface to space.

Kerry Buckley, MITRE Vice President and Director, CAASD

ENHANCING SAFETY, SECURITY, EQUITY AND EFFICIENCY IN ALL TRANSPORTATION SYSTEMS

New types of vehicles are now entering the airspace system—and the space beyond—at a rapid pace. We’re approaching a future where the FAA, other government entities, and airspace users will increasingly collaborate to manage the system.

As with so many other things, the technology that powers our ability to get from Point A to Point B constantly shifts—and isn’t often a straight line.  MITRE is working to address the complex system of automated and connected systems to make sure our nation’s transportation infrastructure is the safest and most efficient in the world. 

Working together, we’re applying our rich heritage in aviation innovation to what lies beyond the horizon—from rockets and low-Earth orbit satellites to transportation on land and at sea.

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We partner with government and key stakeholders worldwide to help ensure safe, secure, and efficient transportation systems.