Threaded Track: Geospatial Data Fusion for Aircraft Flight Trajectories

June 2018
Topics: Aviation and Aeronautics, Signal Processing, Data (General), Computing Methodologies
Adric C. Eckstein, The MITRE Corporation
Chris Kurcz, The MITRE Corporation
Marcio O. Silva, The MITRE Corporation
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​Previous studies demonstrated the capability of associating surveillance trajectories to produce a synthetic track with the best possible coverage referred to as the threaded track. The previous process relied on synthesis of radar trajectories using identifying information (metadata) such as call sign, beacon code, and aircraft type. However, a substantial portion of general aviation flights contain no identifying information, and, thus were not included in the threaded track data repository.

This study improves upon the previous methodology by removing the requirement of populated metadata for fusing flight surveillance trajectories. Instead, the updated threaded track process associates trajectories based on their temporal and spatial proximity. By employing this approach, a significant amount of data to the threaded track repository has been added and the complexity and computational cost has increased. This report describes the modifications to the threaded track process workflow and the characteristics of the resulting flights.



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