The evolution of airport ground management systems can be categorised into 3 periods. A detailed review can be found here.

1) Before Surface Movement, Guidance and Control System (SMGCS) – (before 1974 ~ 1986)

2) SMGCS – (1986 ~ 2004)

For reference, see ICAO SMGCS Manual Doc 9476-AN/927. The key principles are:

  • ‘See and be seen’ to main spacing
  • Simple Visual aids for guidance
  • Control and Planning mostly down to Air Traffic Controllers, Air Traffic Service and the aerodrome authority
  • Establishment of Standard Taxi Routes mostly for high traffic volume operations
  • Limited surveillance information & radiotelephony for communication

3) Advanced SMGCS (A-SMGCS) – (2004 ~ to date)

For reference, see ICAO A-SMGCS Manual Doc 9830 – AN/452. The key features are:generations

  • Automated route assignment
  • Improved visual aids and guidance
  • Conflict prediction and/or detection, analysis and resolution
  • Automation and Human Factors engineering linking the surface and the terminal
  • Improved means of providing situational awareness
  • Improved means of surveillance

Within A-SMGCS, we can further distinguish 3 generations of research:

1st generation: Passive Routing and Guidance

  • standard mean taxi times or assumed constant speeds
  • any variances from the means resolved by adding a slack time

Examples of research include Lesire (2010), Clare and Richards (2011)Marín (2006).

2nd generation: Semi Active Routing and Guidance

  • realistic taxi speed predictions or
  • detailed 4DTs respecting time intervals given by the routing function in a post processing manner

Examples of research include Ravizza et al. (2014), Cheng (2007).

3rd generation: Active Routing and Guidance

  • 4DTs defined via optimised speed profiles, which are generated with respect to different objectives
  • 4DTs proactively embedded within the routing and scheduling function

Examples of research include Chen et al. (2015), Chen et al. (2016).